Jowhar: A Hidden Gem in Somalia

The Hirshabelle state of Somalia is headquartered in the city of Jowhar. Jowhar serves as the seat of government for Somalia’s Middle Shabelle area. North of Mogadishu, the country’s capital, the city is located 90 kilometers along the main route. Because of a variety of factors, this city is regarded as a hidden treasure in Somalia. Discover more by reading on!

jowhar, somalia
Jowhar, Somalia

Historical Background

The Quranic name Jowhar, which translates to “essence” and “precious stone,” is used for both boys and girls. It is Jowhara’s plural form. It comes from the J-H26-R root, which frequently appears in the Quran and means “visible, manifest, open, loud.”

The Ajuran Empire ruled over Jowhar and a large portion of the surrounding region in southern Somalia throughout the Middle Ages. After the mighty Ajuran Empire was overthrown, the town was later governed by the Hiraab Imamate in the late 17th century.

Jowhar was included in Italian Somaliland at the turn of the century. The city was designated as the official Jowhar District’s center upon independence in 1960.

A Federal Member State in south-central Somalia, Hirshabelle is formally known as the Hirshabelle State of Somalia. Its borders include Ethiopia to the west, the Indian Ocean to the east, the South West State of Somalia, the Banadir region to the south, and the Galmudug State of Somalia to the north. Jowhar is the capital of the Somalian Hirshabelle state.


A 2004 agreement stipulated that for security reasons, the administrative capital of the Transitional Federal Government would be split between Jowhar and the town of Baidoa. However, fighting persisted, endangering the peace effort.

To speed up the process and join Prime Minister Ali Mohammed Ghedi, who had already been a resident in the town for a month, President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed moved from his base in Bosaso to the town in July 2005. Some ministries were established in Mogadishu, while a portion of the parliament relocated to Jowhar.

Despite Ghedi’s security worries, the two leaders traveled to Baidoa in February 2006, where it was decided the parliament would meet.


With a square area of 25 square kilometers, Jowhar city is considered to be a very laid-back city. Therefore, it makes a perfect place for travelers looking for a peaceful, rural setting without the commotion of major towns.

Because of the low cost of rooms in this town, you can use Jowhar as a base to travel throughout Somalia or as a destination close to attractions. It is 100 meters above mean sea level or meters above mean sea level.

Read more: Mogadishu Beaches with photos

However, Jowhar is no stranger to the internal political issues taking over Somalia. Ultimately, the political conditions have affected necessities, including safe transportation within the country.

The route connecting Jalalaqsi and Mogadishu through Jowhar is regarded as being reasonably secure. The route from Jalalaqsi to Buloburde is used to provide supplies to the city, although it is vulnerable to Al-Shabaab attacks.

 Al-Shabab attacks are more likely to occur on the road from Bulobarde through the Halgan settlement in Beledwayne since it runs through their territory. The Al-Shabaab region is accessible when civil transit is being operated.

Hidden jewels in the city of Jowhar Somalia

jowhar, hirshabelle, somalia

Despite frequent attacks on public spaces in Jowhar, including Jowhar Airport, the city lends itself to a unique blend of Somalian culture. Moreover, Jowhar’s weather stays relatively cool throughout the year, allowing daredevil tourists to embark on the expedition to explore the city.

Jowhar Somalia is known for its highly economical food, which showcases Somalian cuisine in its full authenticity. Jowhar Restaurant has earned the reputation of being the first top-rated restaurant in the city, and for all the good reasons.

Fisheries, rain-fed and irrigated agriculture, and animal farming are all supported in the area. Access to Jowhar, which was long under Al-Shabaab control, was severely restricted for aid organizations until the Somali national army, with the assistance of AMISOM, recaptured the city in February 2013.

Read more: Best Beaches in Hirshabelle State

But that has done little to affect the natural topographical beauty of the city of Jowhar. The land is relatively flat and is home to beautiful nature in the form of greenery and several animal species.

Way forward for Jowhar

The city of Jowhar is indeed one of the most valuable assets of the Somalian state. It is a gem that may be lost if it continues to fall prey to the political destruction in the country. That is where the Jowhar Resilience Plan comes into play.

The primary components of resilience in the city and its surroundings are summarized in the Jowhar Resilience Plan. It provides a brief analysis of the present development issues, emphasizing the dangers associated with the environment and the climate that affect vulnerable populations.

It is a technical paper that complements a number of other planning studies and reports to help Jowhar design its future in a way that is more sustainable, leaving no community behind and offering all communities access to essential urban amenities.

From a vulnerability viewpoint, this resilience plan identifies the primary processes now occurring in Jowhar. The goal of the vision and the sample interventions is to at least partially reverse those processes.

It is hoped that this working paper will aid in the crucial public debate about the future development of Jowhar and speed up local, regional, state, and federal decision-making.

Other studies and data updates carried out by UN organizations and other international partners, such as SWALIM (Somalia Water and Land Information Management), IOM, World Bank-FAO, and CCCM Cluster, are being referred to.

Keep reading: The most beautiful places in Somalia

The Jowhar Core Facilitation team of the Midnimo II (Unity) project, “Support for the Attainment of Durable Solutions in Areas Impacted by Displacement and Returns in Galmudug and Hirshabelle States,” assisted with the creation of this resilience strategy.

To conclude

Over the years, Jowhar has indeed struggled to live up to its name. But what gives this city its heartbeat is the resilience of the people. With a long and difficult political history under its belt, the city of Jowhar continues to strive for better.

Writer: Mustafa Mmj

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