Unknown gunmen ambushed Hassan, director of the Shabelle Media Network,
as he was entering his home and shot
him five times in the head and chest, according to local journalists. The
murder occurred around 6:30 p.m. in the government-controlled Wadajir District
of the capital, Mogadishu, according to the same sources.
Police announced the arrests of four suspects, two of whom
they said matched the descriptions given by eyewitnesses to the killing. A few
hours before the murder, a man claiming to be a businessman entered the
station’s offices and spoke to Hassan about an advertising contract, according
to his colleagues. The man was allegedly overheard asking Hassan about the time
and manner in which he got home and requested a meeting with him, Shabelle’s
head of development and international relations, Ali Dahir Abdi, told CPJ.
Nicknamed “Fantastic,” Hassan was the producer and presenter
of three major news programs: a daily news analysis program called “Diirada,” a
monthly investigative magazine, and a call-in program, according to Ali. In
recent weeks, he had aired investigative reports detailing alleged corruption
at Mogadishu’s seaport and in the Banadir regional administration, Ali said.
Information Minister Abdulkadir Hussein condemned the murder
in a statement and called the Shabelle Media Network “one of the most important
and pioneering media houses serving the country.” He said police were
investigating and would “not leave a stone unturned,” according to news
reports. The African Union offered to assist the government in its
investigation, AU spokesman Lt. Col. Paddy Ankunda said in a statement.
Hassan, who was in his mid-30s, is survived by a wife and
three children, according to Ali.