The story of former Somali refugee at the Daadab camp now seeking a leadership role in the City Council of Minneapolis has inspired a local musician to produce a song of hope.
Howard Kranz a songwriter and a voter in Minneapolis says he has been touched by the story of Suud Olat, a 29-year-old candidate for the Council who was talking about his experiences in the Kenyan refugee camp eight years ago.
“His (Olat’s) words have inspired me to write about a song of hope and unity,” says Kranz.
Kranz says voting should be used as a tool to make one’s voice be heard.
In his brief composition, he says people want hope, people want to build and be a part of the larger American community.
He says: “People want a voice, we want to be humble, generous, kind and help each other to resolve their differences.”
Olat has been campaigning across Minneapolis over the last few weeks since the seat fell vacant.
He has been campaigning on the platform of inclusivity, equity and equality among all races in the city that was hard hit by demonstrations following the killing of George Floyd by police two months ago.
Inspired by the tribulations he went through as a refugee in Dadaab and the undying urge to touch lives, Olat is venturing into politics to help change the lives of Minnesotans of different backgrounds in ward 6.
“I want to show the world that being a refugee is not an impediment, its conditions that make one flee from the home country,” Olat has said.
Olat’s key rallying point in his campaign includes addressing affordable housing, community-led public safety and empowering small business and entrepreneurs, caring for seniors and persons living with disabilities and addressing educational, economic and social gaps in the wider community.
“I am here because I was lucky to get a chance to read. But what of the millions of young boys and girls in refugee camps who cannot access education.”
The elections will be held on August 11.
BY ODINDO AYIEKO