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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

SOMALIAN EX-PM, MOHAMMAD A. MOHAMED: Return 'home' surreal after Somalia sojourn!


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By Jay Rey, NEWS STAFF REPORTER, buffalonews.com / Updated: August 7, 2011, 11:37 AM.

Mohamed A. Mohamed tries to settle in at his state job after spending nine months as prime minister of Somalia / Morgan Walker / Buffalo News.


His first day back to work was a bit surreal.
Less than two months ago, he was prime minister of Somalia. He battled terrorists, pirates and warlords. He addressed dignitaries from the United Nations.
Now, Mohamed A. Mohamed is back at his old job at the state Department of Transportation downtown, back to his little cubicle with a window overlooking Swan Street.
A few photos of him as premier were tacked to his wall by colleagues, the only visible reminder that these last nine months weren't a dream.
"It's a different feeling when you're heading a whole nation and you come back to your normal life," Mohamed said. "It's a little awkward, to tell you the truth."
Mohamed, 49, a Somali native who resettled in Buffalo more than 20 years ago, was forced out as Somalia's prime minister in June, ending his remarkable months-long odyssey as abruptly as it began.
He returned to his job at the DOT on Thursday, as he tries to settle into his old life as civil servant, husband and father living on Grand Island.
But his heart is still with Somalia. He still grapples with what he saw, what's happening and lessons learned.
As prime minister, Mohamed pleaded with international leaders to pay closer attention to his homeland in East Africa, and now we understand why.


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