Every crumb of life must be used to conquer dignity!
Fatou Diome (Le ventre de l’Atlantique)
SENEGAL Official name: Republic of Senegal
State form: Presidential republic
Languages: French, Wolof, Fulbe, Serer, Madingue, Diola
Capital: Dakar Independence: 04/04/1960
Area: 196,722 km2
Population: 16,209,125 ( 2019)
Religion: Islam, (94%), Christianity (5%), animism (1%)
International / regional organizations: UN, ILO, FAO, UNESCO, WHO, IMF, IAEA AU, ECOWAS, UEMOA, OIF.
History of Senegal
The history of Senegal is first of all the one of empires and kingdoms, migrations and conquests, long before the arrival of the first European settlers.
Before the colonial period, several kingdoms succeeded each other with a wave of migration which led to the settlement of Senegal with the formation of large empires (Ghana empire, Mali empire in the middle of the 13th century, Songhai empire) which exercised their authority over the Senegal valley, real axis of trade between peoples. Several kingdoms have also settled. The kingdom of Tekrour, was the first and was under the domination of Ghana Empire until the end of the 10th century. As for the Djolof kingdom, the nucleus of Senegal, was founded by King Ndiadian Ndiaye, and brought together the Wolof tribes in the 14th century.
From the 15th century several powers tried to establish their domination over Senegal. From 1677 to 1814, fierce competition took place between foreign powers in order to ensure total domination of Senegal. Indeed, the first wave was that of the Portuguese with the establishment of vast trading posts for the transit of goods such as gold, spices and ivory… The second wave at the end of the 15th century was that of the British and Dutch, with the establishment of a fort. The French presence, around the 17th century, was marked by the construction of a fortified trading post on the island of Nadar, in Rufisque and in Joal. It was not until 1814, on 30th May, that the Treaty of Paris gave France control over Senegal.
It was with General de Gaulle’s assistance during the Brazaville conference in 1944 that the wave of domination gradually ended. This period was marked by a succession of politico-legal decisions. In fact, in 1946, the “Lamine Gueye” law conferred French citizenship, the 1957 law divided French West Africa into eight states and established the local executive in Senegal. In 1958, Senegal became a Republic within the French community with the capital being Dakar. 25th August, 1960, is a memorable date in the history of the Republic of Senegal, which is dedicated to the independence of Senegal, under the President Léopold Sédar Senghor. From February 1983, Senegal has known successively as President, Abdou Diouf (1983), Abdoulaye Wade (2000 to 2012) and Macky Sall since 2012.
Geopolitics and Interdependence
Located between the Sahelian zone and the tropical forest, Senegal benefits from an exceptional diversity. The volcanic peninsula of Cape Verde with the volcanic hills of udders 104m high, the cliff of Thiès and the first foothills of Fouta Djalon in the South East of the country in Kedougou region, the hills of Fouta-Toro are the resources the country should be pride of.
The Senegal River, which gives its name to the country, shares border with Mauritania and its tributary, the Faleme which marks the limits with Mali, and contributes to the tourist development of the country. Senegal also has important natural resources including Phosphate, limestone, iron, marble, gold, peat, petroleum and natural gas which make up the richness of its soil.
With its opening onto the Atlantic Ocean, Senegal benefits from a remarkable geographical location. This allows the country to play, very early, a role as a hub in the various exchanges between Europe, America and Africa. Indeed, Africa is the first destination for Senegalese products with 49.7% of exports, followed by Asia (19.5%) and Europe (16.9%). In terms of imports, Europe remains the main supplier of Senegal with 47.1% of imports, followed by Asia with 25.9%, Africa for 19.5% and America for 6, 5%. In addition, Senegal also remains a country that is fairly popular with its partners, given the strengths of its primary, secondary and tertiary sectors, which make Senegal a country of investment.
Also the attractiveness of the business climate, the fairly sustained growth of the economy since 2015, the peaceful political climate, make Senegal a great partnership opportunity for Western countries. For example, trade cooperation between Senegal and countries like Germany and France shows a fairly high export rate from 2015 to 2019, particularly in priority areas such as minerals, agriculture and fishing. Trade between Senegal and France, its first trading partner increased to 911.7 million of euros in 2018, with a trade surplus in favor of France which amounted to 729.6 million of euros in 2018 against 671 million of euros in 2017 (i.e. + 8.7%). In addition, French exports to Senegal are around 821 million of euros in 2018, with growth of 8% compared to that of 2017. In addition, the presence of more than 200 French companies in Senegal in terms of French direct investments in Senegal show the importance of Senegal for France.
Current political development of Senegal
In an international environment more than ever characterized by extreme competition between countries in a system where opportunities are becoming increasingly scarce, it is through a change that Senegal is tackling the challenges and exploiting its enormous potential in order to be part of a new strong growth path that is inclusive, sustainable, creates jobs and preserves the environment and resources. Indeed, since 2015, the Senegalese economy has experienced remarkable growth. From 6.7% in 2016 to 6.9% in 2017, this growth goes to 7% in 2018 and 2019 with leverage in agriculture, tourism, public investment in energy, infrastructure. Senegal is also resolutely committed to a new model of economic and social development through the Emerging Senegal Plan (ESP) which aims to emerge in solidarity. The vision is that of “An emerging Senegal in 2035 with a united society and respect of the rule of law”. This reference for economic and social policy emphasizes the creation of wealth and jobs, the strengthening of governance, the development of strategic sectors which have significant impacts on improving the well-being of populations, particularly through protecting vulnerable groups and ensuring access to essential services.
Climate protection policy in Senegal
Climate change remains one of the biggest concerns on the planet. Like many other countries, Senegal is committed to the fight against climate change and its repercussions on both humans and the environment.
Every country in the world is witnessing the severe impact of climate change. Greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise and have more than doubled since 1990. What is more, global warming is causing lasting changes in our climate system, which pose a threat with irreversible consequences if nothing is done about it. the immediate.
The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change was ratified by Senegal on October 17, 1997. By ratifying the Paris Agreement, Senegal has set itself a realistic objective of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions, respectively under the unconditional and conditional option, of 5% and 21% by 2030.
Senegal, like most developing countries, was not obliged to have a commitment to reduce GHGs but are responsible states. So we must therefore contribute to the global dynamic, because it is the fate of the planet that is at stake.
In order to achieve this objective, Senegal has carried out some projects to adapt to climate change
– Adaptation of coastal zones to climate change (ACCC), funded by UNDP
– Adaptation of Areas Vulnerable to Coastal Erosion (PAZVEC), under financing from the Adaptation Fund
– Integration of adaptation to climate change into sustainable development in Senegal (INTAC), funded by Japan
– Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM), funded by the European Union
– Disaster Risk Management and adaptation to climate change, financing from the World Bank
– Rainwater management and adaptation to climate change, financed by the Nordic Fund / World Bank
– “Climate Change Agriculture and Food Security” project, FAO funding
– Strengthening resilience in the Sahel (P2RS), ADB financing
Aline Sitoé Diatta
Née entre 1910 et 1920, à Kabrousse, Aline Sitoé Diatta, reine et prêtresse marqua l’histoire de son pays par son caractère d’héroïne lors de la résistance casamançaise.
Partie vivre à Dakar, suite à des conditions de vie très difficile et la mort de son père, Aline Sitoé Diatta quitta Dakar où elle assurait le rôle de domestique de maison chez un colon du nom de Martinet, régisseur des produits de base en Afrique de l’Ouest.
Selon l’histoire, c’est 20 ans après soit en 1941, qu’elle décida de retourner dans son quartier natal, pour sauver son pays de l’oppression du colon. Aline Sitoé Diatta s’est fait le devoir de s’engager par l’action dans le mouvement africain de libération nationale qui battait son plein. En effet, elle demanda à son peuple, de s’insurger catégoriquement contre toute domination du colon notamment pour ce qui est du paiement des impôts en espèce ou en nature, l’imposition de la culture d’arachide plutôt que celui du riz. Elle conduisit ainsi son peuple dans une résistance.
Face à un peuple de plus en plus déterminée et acquise à la cause de la résistance, les casamançais étaient désormais une cible pour les colons. Toute personne qui se réclamait pro Aline Sitoé était perçue comme un danger pour le colon. Devant le nombre de plus en plus important qui s’insurgeait contre le colon, ces derniers décidèrent de se lancer à sa recherche. L’Administration coloniale décréta qu’elle était une rebelle et insoumise, qu’elle s’opposait à la France et donc qu’elle était à abattre. Plusieurs personnes perdirent la vie durant cette résistance. Pour éviter que d’autres innocents furent tués, elle décida de se livrer elle-même aux colons, et fut arrêtée le 8 mai 1943.
Aline Sitoé Diatta, Reine prêtresse, figure de la résistance en Casamance, fut déportée au Mali, ou elle a été déclarée morte en 1944. Son règne fut marqué par une défiance permanente des français pour laquelle elle a consacré sa vie.
Prime Minister of Senegal from 1952 to 1962, under the Presidency of Leopold Sedar Senghor, Mamadou Dia, friend and rival of this latter, was one of the architects of Senegal’s Independence. Though unknown, he was one of those leaders who impacted the political life of the country.
Following a power struggle concerning the state’s management and future of the country, he was overthrown in 1962 and died in January 2009. He left many books including: « Failure of the interchange program in Senegal and the crisis of the liberal world »; « Senegal: radioscopy of a failed interchange program» ; « Africa : the price of freedom » ; « emancipation of captive economy » ; « the African economy: studies and new challenges» ; and « African Nations and world solidarity».
In one of his famous speech on politics of development and the different African paths of socialism, Mamadou Dia, reaffirmed his ideology and highlighted the necessity of the revolutionary rejection of ancient structures and the necessity of complete change from colonial society and slave economy to a free society and a development economy.
THE BLACK DOCKER by Sembène Ousmane, 1960
Such a long letter from Mariama Bâ, 1979
BLACK SUN. THE TALIBÉ CHILD OF SENEGAL by Jean-Christophe Vertheuil, 2020
SENEGAL BETWEEN ILLUSIONS AND ILLUMINATIONS by Ngor Dieng, 2020