Recalling the legacy of Somali Youth League (SYL)

Recalling the legacy of Somali Youth League (SYL)



On this day of 15 May 1943, 13 young men with big dreams came together in a club in Mogadishu to establish the Somali Youth League aka (SYL) in order to emancipate Somali nation from the yoke of colonialism and as a result went down on the golden pages of history as liberators, warriors and founding fathers of motherland.

In the eyes of many, what these 13 young heroes were dreaming of (a sovereign Somalia) was a fantasy as their resource remained meagre, their education level low and their managerial skills almost non-existent, however, what many Somalis and other in west hardly realized was the strong conviction for self-determination and the unity among the freedom loving people of Somalia.

Building on the goodwill and yearning for freedom among Somalis, these young men ,united only by common conviction of liberty and self-determination(unlike many Somalis today),galvanized people behind them and finally led Somalia to independence from Britain and Italy.

Now this day has become a day we only celebrate and remember the good old days when Somali youth were the leaders of the society. What we frequently hear today is organizations formed with the same name (SYL) to keep alive the psychological nationalistic fervor and unforgettable legacy left behind by the thirteen young heroes of SYL. We also often sing on 15 May celebrations the Somali Youth League era songs for tribute and societal uplifting.

All of these celebrations will only last a few days and will be forgotten until the next May arrives and the same routine celebrations are carried out. However, most of us forget about the challenges currently faced by our youth which I would like to enlighten three of them in the following lines: