The 10th Hargeysa International Book Fair will open its doors at 8.30am on Saturday the 22nd of July 2017 and will run for full six days. Our theme this year will be connectivity and the guest country South Africa. So far the themes explored at Hargeysa International Book Fair have included freedom, censorship, citizenship, collective memory, visualization the future, Journey, Imagination, Spaces and Leadership & Creativity.

As we accelerate into a future increasingly shaped and dominated by technology, movement of people and increase global closeness, connectivity seems to be our destiny. Connectivity is impacting the world in ways we could never have imagined, through roads, railways, airlines and most importantly Internet cables. Through connectivity we are reshaping the world map and as a result we become stronger and better community.

In the Africa continent, connectivity in all forms is taking root- but some forms are growing at much faster rate than others. Connectivity through infrastructural activities such as transportation, energy and communications is revolutionary development backed by many of our government to pull our society, economy and country forward. On the other hand the Internet has grown in our continent unprompted and increasingly the world online is borderless experiences shared in real time. As result we were able to live stream the entire HIBF2016 online for free to a wide audience across different time zones. As a result of greater connectivity we were able to project our ideas, our values and principles to a much greater audience, and because of greater connectivity- each year we have been able to invite guests from all over the world to travel here- to Somaliland to participate in Hargeysa International Book Fair.

Connectivity is the key to our connectedness, it allows us to share our literature, our culture, our music, our ideas and values with each other and find a common ground. We connect between the societies and individuals thought the humankind created knowledge, literature, art, culture and music. With enough care, creative confidence and a willingness to change things, together, we can all benefit from the increased connectivity.

At our 10th anniversary we want to celebrate our collective achievement, as a society, as a country, as an organization, as esteemed guests and all our guest countries. We want to celebrate all that connects us, all that keeps us connected and find ways for greater connectedness and cooperation.

In this year’s program, we are pleased to have a diverse set of speakers who will reflect on the way the world is connected globally but also societies level up to individual level.

The Guest Country is South Africa. On account of its heroic victory over the most heinous system of apartheid, oppression, and exploitation followed by the judicious adoption of its highly plausible policy of peace, reconciliation and togetherness among its multi-ethnic, multi- cultural nation state, has deservedly symbolised both the African continent’s historical pride as well as its hopeful future. We are delighted to have Ambassador Dr. Iqbal Jhazbhay, Dr David Monyae, Co-Director at the University of Johannesburg Confucius Institute (UJCI) and Dr. Raphael d’Abdon, writer, scholar, spoken word poet, editor and translator who teaches UNISA.

On the top of the two specific panels for the theme and guest country of the year, the program covers a mix range of current issues: from pure literature critique and poetry reading sessions, to discussions on climate change and its effects on Somaliland, including the current droughts; from Sustainable Development Goals seen in the eyes of Somali culture and with words of Somali traditional poetry and wisdom, to purely entertainment events of live music and theatre performances; from children’s literature and entertainment sessions including circus plays to high level economic development debates and the current state of democratization process in Somaliland. The book launches and presentations will however make the major pillar of the program and the line-up of debut authors and acclaimed international and local authors will launch their newly published books.

The 10th Anniversary of the HIBF plans 10 major panels and debates on current issues, 10 international authors presenting their books, 10 renowned Somaliland based authors launching their books, 10 young debut authors presenting their first published works; 10 special side-events including children entertainment, circus and community cohesion dinner; 10 films or documentary films, including 5 children films/cartoons, will be screened in different places of the city and 10 cultural and tourist visits both in cultural and historical places of the city (HCC, Saryan Museum, National Library, the National Theatre) and outside of Hargeysa (including Laasgeel, Berbera, Bullaxaar, Camuud and Gacan Libaax highlands); and the program will take place in 10 different locations of the city.


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