SIR Mo Farah has revealed he has been hiding the truth about his life for decades – and even his name is fake.
The four-time Olympic gold medalist, 39, bravely admitted making up key details about the move to the UK.
He previously claimed to have joined his father but was killed in the Somali civil war.
Sir Mo – real name Hussein Abdi Kahin – tells a TV documentary that he was trafficked here to work as a servant.
The running legend fears losing her British citizenship.
The married father of three bravely admitted: “There’s something about me you don’t know. It’s a secret I’ve been hiding since childhood.
“I kept it for so long, it was difficult because you don’t want to see it. My children often ask questions – ‘Dad, how come?’ And you always have an answer for everything, but you don’t have an answer for that.
“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.
“Being able to face that and talk about the facts, how it happened, why it happened is tough. The truth is, I’m not who you think I am. And now I must tell my true story at all costs.”
The revelations will be revealed in a bombastic new BBC1 documentary, The Real Mo Farah, which airs tomorrow night.
In it, Sir Mo – who has opted to keep his assumed identity – fears he could have his British citizenship revoked for providing false information in his application.
The 2012 Olympics legend, who was knighted five years ago, had always insisted his father was an IT consultant named Muktar, who was born and raised in London.
He claimed his father then moved to Mogadishu and met his mother before returning to Britain, followed by his son as the Somali civil war deepened.
However, his father was actually a farmer named Abdi who was killed in the conflict when his son was four years old. His mother Aisha later sent him to neighboring Djibouti for his safety.
She wanted him to be reunited with his twin brother Hassan. Instead, one of his own relatives may have helped bring him illegally to the UK through a mystery woman.
He said: “The hardest thing is admitting to myself that someone in my own family may have been involved in trafficking me.”
When she arrived at the age of eight, she told him that his name was now Mo Farah and that he would have to take care of her family in exchange for food.
He applied for British citizenship under this false name – and by admitting it now he is jeopardizing his national status.
However, the long-distance running icon – married to Tania, with nine-year-old twin girls Aisha and Amani and six-year-old son Hussein – is determined to find closure.
For most of his childhood and adolescence, he did not see his biological family, which had been “torn apart” by the death of his father.
He said: “My father went to herd cattle and never came back. Because of the civil war between the North and the South, many people fought where he was.
“There was a massive bazooka shot. It hit the ground and flew to pieces and a piece hit him in the head and right off, from the head there. The hardest thing for me to this day is that I don’t even know what he looked like.”
The documentary includes a clip of him on The Jonathan Ross Show recalling how excited he was to meet his father when he first arrived in London. In fact, however, he was taken by the mysterious woman to her family in Isleworth, West London, where he was forced to work for her.
Deeply unhappy, he finally worked up the courage to tell his teachers and Social Services stepped in. He was eventually cared for by a Somali woman named Kinsi for seven years.
My father went tending cattle and never came back.
On the show, she recalls feeling compelled to save him by posing as his aunt. She said, “You weren’t happy. You cry. Then I tried to find out what’s wrong with you. The lady, she always lets you do the housework, having the kids, giving them their milk, changing their diapers and all those things.”
She added of the mystery woman, “She didn’t bring you as a person.”
Though his parents and brother never left his mind, Mo finally gained some stability thanks to his adoptive family. He was then able to develop his natural ability to walk at Feltham Community College in Hounslow, West London.
However, a major hurdle came when he was selected at the age of 14 to attend English schools in Latvia. His PE teacher Alan Watkinson said: “It wasn’t really clear what immigration status Mo had. You know, he didn’t have the paperwork he needed for a trip.
“So we started giving him British citizenship as Mohamed Farah. Getting Mo to the point where you know he has British citizenship has been quite a long process.”
As his track and field career blossomed around 2000, he received shocking news from his family back home. A customer at a Somali restaurant where he worked told him she had just seen his mother. Sir Mo recalls, “I was like, ‘Have you seen my mother? She lives?’ And she says, ‘Yes, she’s alive. Here’s a photo, so if you don’t believe me. And then she said, “Look, that’s a tape for you.”
“It wasn’t just a tape, it was more a voice and then she sang sad songs to me like poetry or traditional songs, you know. And I would listen to it for days, for weeks. On the side of the ribbon was a number and it said, “If it bothers you or bothers you, just don’t do it. You don’t have to contact me. And I say, ‘Of course I want to contact you.’ That’s when I called my mother for the first time.”
The documentary then moves to Somalia, where Aisha reveals, “When I heard it, I felt like I dropped the phone on the floor and was transported to it by all the joy I felt.”
On an emotional journey, Mo and son Hussein return to his home village and see his father’s grave.
His mother said: “Never in my life did I think I would see you or your children alive. We lived in a place without livestock and devastated land. We all thought we were going to die. “Boom, boom, boom” was all we heard. I sent you away because of the war.”
She said they were told they were all going together, but recalled, “When I woke up you were already gone. I was wondering why they left me that night.”
Thats only me. I don’t know how everyone will see it. Now I’m beginning to understand myself. Me, not Mohammed.
In the documentary, he also finds out that the original Mo Farah was the stepson of the woman who brought him to the UK. He gets emotional upon seeing his namesake, who has never been to the UK. Sir Mo said: “I always wonder, ‘Where’s Mohamed? Is he alright? What would life have been like for him?’”
Sir Mo’s true background has been harder to hide following his exploits in 2012. He said, “The hardest thing for me was just not being honest.”
But he added: “I feel like something has been lifted off my shoulders.
“But that’s just me. I don’t know how everyone will see this. Now I’m beginning to understand myself. Me, not Mohamed.”
- THE Real Mo Farah, BBC1, tomorrow, 9pm.
FEAR OF CITIZENSHIP
SIR Mo stars in the documentary where his wife Tania gets legal advice on his nationality issue.
Attorney Allan Briddock tells him it appears to have “made false statements”, adding: “Therefore there is a legal power to strip you of your British citizenship.”
However, the risk is lower because “you yourself, as a very young child, were obliged to take care of children and basically be domestic servants,” he says.
He also said Mo informed authorities, “That’s not my name.”
But he added: “We don’t have a crystal ball. So we want to be absolutely clear that while we think it’s a small risk, there is a real risk that this is going to happen.”
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/5753763/mo-farah-real-name-uk-illegally/ I was living a lie… my real name is not Mo Farah and I was trafficked here after my father was killed in the Somali war