Two weeks ago, the student Fallou Sene was killed in Saint-Louis during a demonstration repressed by the police. The death of this 26-year-old student has set fire to campuses, including the Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar. Last Thursday, everywhere in the country especially in the city of Saint Louis, Ziguinchor and Dakar, the students walked to pay tribute to their counterpart and demand that justice be done.
“We are there so that the perpetrators of this despicable act are brought to justice, so that the gendarmes are brought to justice” said Lansana Sagna a student from Saint-Louis who came to Dakar to protest. They were about six thousands students protesting across the country on thursday.
Fallou Sène a 26-year-old student of Modern Literature was killed while protesting the delay in the payment of scholarships. The law enforcement was requested by the rector in response of the students deciding to use the university restaurants without paying.
According to the first elements of the investigation, Fallou Sène is “dead following a gunshot wound”. The investigation, which is still underway, should be completed shortly, hopefully to shed light on this tragedy.
After Macky Sall presented his condolences to the family, a delegation led by the President of the Economic and Social Economic Council, and composed of two ministers, handed an envelope of 10 million CFA francs (about 15,000 euros) to the family of the deceased. They also announced that the Republic of Senegal offers two tickets for the pilgrimage to Mecca to the victim’s parents and pledged to recruit the widow and brother of the missing student into the civil service. The opposition too played its part. Idrissa Deck, a declared opponent of Macky Sall in the next presidential election, went to Pattar, home of the family of Fallou Sene. He also promised to cover the cost of repairing the family home.
President Macky Sall did meet with a delegation of students, but this informal one-on-one did not help. For Mamadou Dieng, the fight is just beginning: “As long as there is no answer we will continue. Today the students motto is to say clearly “unlimited strike”. There will be no classes in all the public universities of Senegal until the light is shed on the conditions under which Fallou Sene was assassinated “. This unlimited strike will surely complicate an already troubled academic year.
But the real questions the government should answer today are : Why do students so often have to scold for scholarships to be paid? What is the responsibility of the ministers in charge of the issue in this tragedy?
Meanwhile saturday, at the presentation of a book containing some of his speeches, Macky Sall declared “The regiments of the Senegalese tirailleurs, when they were in the barracks, were entitled to desserts while other Africans did not have any” a sentence that was taken up on social networks during the weekend and criticized Monday in the local press. Mainly accused of revisionism about the colonial part of senegalese history Macky Sall surely did not need the bad buzz and this will not help to ease the dialogue with the students.