Op-Ed: Dr. Edna Adan Ismail: “Represents the invincible spirit & perseverance character known by Somaliland people!”

Dr. Edna Adan Ismail photo by Edna Adan Foundation

By Hussein Adan Igeh (Deyr):

Dr. Edna’s life and legacy are a testament compellingly pointing to us that serving your country and people is a noble cause. Her hardworking nature, humbleness, decency, and determination are what make her a unique woman in the middle of a male-dominated and patriarchal Somaliland society.

Her hopeful attitude and commanding sense of responsibility, compassion, propensity, and disposition are an inspiration and noble character to be emulated for generations to come. Her individual quality and ability reflect the true character, perseverance, resilience, bravery, and invincible spirit of the Somaliland people as a whole.

The multiple roles that Dr Edna Adan has been performing ever since such as:

(a) speaking up tirelessly about the very often ignored Somaliland’s statehood and right for self-determination on international stages;

(b) building, managing, and maintaining an iconic maternity hospital & an academic teaching institution (Edna Adan University) and so contributing to the country’s healthcare service;

(c) guiding and nurturing multidisciplinary young medical professionals;

(d) and helping those people in need;

All these are the unique individual quality and abilities that apparently distinguish Dr. Edna from the rest of Somaliland’s politicians and leaders of political groups, past and present. In reality, these particular characters are what capture the hearts & minds of Dr. Edna’s fellow Somaliland citizens worldwide.

For more than 60 years, Dr. Edna Adan had spared no effort to serve her own people and country in whatever, wherever, and in whichever capacity she can. We (the people of Somaliland) will be eternally grateful for Dr. Edna’s commitment, her exemplary and unparalleled determination, and her endeavor to advocate for Somaliland’s plea for recognition.

With Allah’s help and blessing, Dr. Edna keeps speaking up without fear or favor, remembering that there has never been and there will never be any power -(except the Power of Almighty Allah)- that would affect the choice of Somaliland and its people in any shape or form.

The stakes in this battle for our country’s independence and statehood are as high as they’ve never been before. The tone of Somaliland’s antagonists at home and abroad has reached new levels of acrimony and enmity. However, the destiny of the Republic of Somaliland will always be determined only and exclusively by the people of Somaliland.


Dr Edna Adan Ismail won a prestigious and the largest international award prize ever given to an individual African woman: The Templeton Prize!

Her commitment to the highest moral and scientific standards makes her such an exemplary and rightful winner of the Templeton Prize.

Dr. Edna Adan Ismail has worked tirelessly and courageously to change cultural, religious, and medical norms surrounding women’s health in Somaliland, improving the lives of thousands of women and girls in the East Africa region and beyond. Edna has dedicated herself to helping a community that did not have adequate medical care, thereby achieving a global impact.

She receives this year’s award in recognition of her extraordinary efforts to harness the power of the sciences to affirm the dignity of women and help them to flourish physically and spiritually.

Dr. Edna Adan’s accumulated Awards, Honorary Doctorates, and International recognitions are included:

  1. Officer of the French Legion d’Honneur,
  2. Commandeur Dans l’Ordre National du 27 Juin, Djibouti;
  3. The Medical Mission Hall of Fame, University of Toledo, Ohio;
  4. Honorary doctorate from Clark University in Massachusetts,
  5. Honorary doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania;
  6. Honorary fellow of Cardiff University School of Nursing in Wales;
  7. The Chancellor’s Gold Medal from the University of Pretoria;
  8. The Renfield Foundation Award for Global Women’s Health;
  9. An honorary doctorate from London South Bank University (formerly Borough Polytechnic, where she was trained);
  10. An honorary fellowship by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists;
  11. Short-listed for the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.,
  12. Templeton International Award.

By Hussein Adan Igeh (Deyr):

Former Somaliland Minister of Trade and Investment & Presidential spokesman

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the Horndiplomat editorial policy.
If you want to submit an opinion piece or an analysis, please email it to Opinion@horndiplomat.com
Horndiplomat reserves the right to edit articles before publication. Please include your full name, relevant personal information and political affiliations

Leave a Reply