LONDON: Former Olympic champion Mo Farah revealed in an article published on Monday (July 11) that he was illegally brought to Britain under the name of another child to work as a domestic worker.
Farah told the BBC he was given the name Mohamed Farah by a woman who flew him to Britain from the east African country of Djibouti when he was nine years old.
The 39-year-old, whose father was killed in Somalia when he was four, said his real name was Hussein Abdi Kahin and claimed he was supposed to be looking after another family’s children in the UK.
“The truth is I’m not who you think I am,” he said in a documentary to air on Wednesday.
“Most people know me as Mo Farah, but it’s not my name or it doesn’t reflect reality.
“The real story is that I was born Hussein Abdi Kahin in Somaliland, north of Somalia. Despite what I have said in the past, my parents have never lived in the UK.
“When I was four years old my father was killed in the civil war, you know we were torn apart as a family.
“I was separated from my mother and brought to the UK illegally under the name of another child named Mohamed Farah.”
Farah, who became the first British track and field athlete to win four Olympic gold medals, said his children motivated him to be honest about his past.
“I’ve kept it for so long, it was difficult because you don’t want to see it, and a lot of times my kids ask, ‘Dad, how come?’ And you always have an answer for everything, but you don’t have an answer for that,” he said.
“That’s the main reason I’m telling my story, because I want to feel normal and not feel like you’re stuck on something.”