Former Somaliland Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohamed Abdullahi Omar has been appointed an Ambassador for ‘Grain from Ukraine’ Programme.

Following the appointment, Dr. Omar will be unveiled by Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at a food security summit in Kyiv on Saturday, November 25.

The summit will commemorate the first anniversary of the Grain from Ukraine initiative. Global leaders, including the presidents of Latvia and Switzerland and prime ministers of Lithuania, Croatia, The Netherlands, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Portugal, and Sweden, will grace the event.

“The world is facing a devastating food crisis due to Russia’s illegal war of aggression against Ukraine and the disruption of global food supplies. Despite all the challenges, Ukraine is committed to acting responsibly on the international stage. The Grain from Ukraine humanitarian initiative was launched by President Zelenskyy last year to tackle famine worldwide, particularly in Africa. I am proud to be appointed honorary ambassador to support the programme. In this critical role, I will do my best to support the initiative and tackle hunger in Africa,” says Dr. Mohammad Abdullahi Omar who was Somaliland’s Minister of Foreign Affairs from 2010 to 2013.

He later served as Somaliland’s Minister of Commerce until May 20, 2014, when he was fired by presidential decree due to an internal dispute within the ruling Peace, Unity, and Development Party over leadership succession.

Before becoming Foreign Minister, Mr Omar was the Kulmiye party’s Foreign Affairs Spokesman.

As a spokesman, he led the formulation of a foreign policy strategy that challenged the government in power and contributed to his party’s victory in the June 2010 elections.

He has also taught at Brunel University and the Institute of Education at the University of London in the United Kingdom.

He also worked as a Senior Education Policy Advisor for Birmingham City Council in the United Kingdom.

Dr. Omar is the latest African to be appointed to the initiative. Others who are already part of it are Christopher Fomunyoh, former Nigerian Minister for Education Obiageli Katryn Ezekwesili and ex-Malawi President Joyce Banda.

President Zelenskyy launched the “Grain from Ukraine” initiative during the International Summit on Food Security in November 2022.

The “Grain from Ukraine” initiative was launched by President Zelenskyy in November 2022 during the International Summit on Food Security. It is an international humanitarian program to supply Ukrainian grain to African and Asian countries to combat the global food crisis and counteract the humanitarian and economic consequences of the Russian war of aggression. As of June 2023, over 170,000 tons of grain have been delivered to Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Yemen via six vessels.

Others expected to be unveiled as Grain Ambassadors include Neven Mimica a Croatian politician and diplomat who served as the European Union’s Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development from 2014 to 2019, Charlotte Leslie a British politician who served as a member of parliament for Bristol Northwest and currently the Director of the Conservative Middle East Council, and Manav Sachdeva  who has over 25 years of experience spearheading initiatives in different environments such as Afghanistan, India, Lebanon, Somalia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Guyana, Liberia and Kosovo, as well as being located in HQ roles at UNHQ in New York City and within US entities in Washington DC.