“The situation is serious, I say this tonight, in all solemnity.” With these words, Senegal’s President, Macky Sall was on the 23. March to the citizens of his country. He called a state of emergency and imposed a lock as a first step, a night-time output valid from that same night. “The disease is spreading so fast that we have to adapt our response to it. Otherwise, a catastrophe threatens us,” said Sali in a televised address, the measures.

from Now on, Muslims are not allowed to be asked in Senegal, the Friday come together, a meeting of the Christian churches are no longer allowed. Schools and universities to stay. The celebrations for the 60. Anniversary of independence from France on 4. April are cancelled. It should be only a small military ceremony to celebrate the day.

An important day for the Senegal –

Even without a big Feast to celebrate the reason for the country to have all, says Ute Gierczynski-Bocandé, a program of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung in Senegal, commissioned. She lives for over 30 years in the West African country and finds: “This is an important day. Since independence, the country has developed a lot.” As an example, she cites the education.

Although there were no complaints that the level is everywhere not high enough, and not all social strata have equal access to the education system. “But in principle, almost any child can go to school, even in the most remote villages,” said Gierczynski-Bocandé. That was 60 years ago, is quite different: Only a few primary and secondary schools have been given at the time of independence.

Nevertheless, the country continues the fight against poverty and inequality. In the Human Development Index of the United Nations, Senegal is ranked 166 out of 189. The Index is as an indicator for prosperity and take into account Per capita income, average life expectancy and educational opportunities.

Everything is concentrated in the capital Dakar

Just in the business observer, to see great need of development. Although the annual growth for several years, at six per cent. But the Senegal is heavily dependent on imports. The large gap between the capital Dakar and the Rest of the country. With an estimated population of 3.7 million, a quarter of all Senegalese live in the metropolis on the Atlantic coast. Industry and economy are concentrated there.

“economic development is not balanced,” says Ute Gierczynski-Bocandé. “Dakar is developing exponentially.” As an example, the expert called the young city of Diamniadio in the Metropolitan area, where ultra-modern buildings. “The act is almost like something out of a futuristic dream. People in other country do not have to share even in running water.”

Diamniadio is located about 30 kilometers from Dakar. In a huge construction project will be by 2035, several industrial parks and tens of thousands of apartments built. A kind of city in the city and ambitious project of the President within the framework of its “Plan Sénégal Emergeant” – in German “Emerging Senegal”.

Political model in the Region

In the past year, the majority of the Senegalese Macky Sall elected for a second term. Democratic change of power, and be a multi-party system of Senegal in the Region is considered politically stable, and other countries as a model. From the American Institute Freedom House, there were 2019 the Note 2 for political rights. Nouhou Baldé, a Journalist from the neighbouring country of Guinea, said the DW on the day of the Senegalese presidential election: “can We learn from Senegal a lot, just in terms of the Organisation of elections.”

happy birthday wishes to Senegal-expert Ute Gierczynski-Bocandé the country one thing: “That it will continue to be a wonderful example of the harmonious living together of people of all races and all religions.” And that after surviving the Corona-crisis, many visitors can see and tourism is revived.

employees: Kossivi Tiassou

author: Friederike Müller-Jung

*The post “Senegal: to celebrate the Party, however,” is published by Deutsche Welle. Contact with the executives here.

Deutsche Welle