British long-distance runner Mohamed Farah has revealed for the first time in a BBC documentary that he is living under a fake name. “The truth is, I’m not who you think I am,” the four-time Olympic track and field champion said in pre-release excerpts of the show, titled The Real Mo Farah.
The 39-year-old from Somalia stated that he was born Hussein Abdi Kahin in a region that has since become largely independent as Somaliland. Contrary to what he previously stated, Farah said his parents never lived in the UK.
Instead, his father died in the civil war and he was separated from his mother. At the age of nine he finally traveled to the United Kingdom. “I was brought to the UK illegally under the name of a child other than Mohamed Farah,” he said.
Farah said the fact that he was now going public was inspired by his own children. “Family means everything to me and as a parent you teach your children to be honest. But I always felt that I always had this secret, that I could never be myself and tell what really happened.” It is now important for him to be able to tell the truth, Farah continues.