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Caravan of peace in Senegal: The kings of Oussouye and Sine spread the good word


An article by Alioune Badara in Le Quotidien

The Diola and Serer communities want to put culture and joking cousinhood at the service of peace. To implement this vision, Maa Sinig Niokhobaye Diouf Fatou Diène, the King of Sine, visited Maan Sibiloumbaye Diédhiou, the King of Oussouye. As part of the strengthening of ties of brotherhood and cohabitation, the kings of Oussouye and Sine initiated a caravan for peace. Diolas and Sérères took advantage of this visit to deepen the bonds of cousinhood, which constitute a social cement.

This is a trip for a good cause. The Serer and Diola communities want to support the State in promoting the culture of peace in Senegal. Following the establishment of a joint committee in November 2022 in Fimela, located in the Fatick region, to prepare for the visit of the King of Sine to the King of Oussouye, in order to strengthen the ties between the two, a cultural caravan for peace was organized. At the head of the caravan is Maa Sinig Niokhobaye Diouf Fatou Diène, the king of Sine, accompanied by Jaraaf and other members of the royal institution of Sine. They left Diakhao to visit Maan Sibiloumbaye Diedhiou, the King of Oussouye.

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(Click here for the French original of this article)

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Can traditional leaders serve a culture of peace?

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The caravan was officially started in Fatick before the Governance by the authorities of the region. The royal institution of Sine specifieD that, “The Maa Sinig-Bu Badjum Ayi Cultural Peace Caravan provides an opportunity to harness the vast potential of Senegambia’s cultural and natural heritage, to strengthen social cohesion and the fight against poverty, and to promote sustainable development. at the base. This cultural caravan for peace, designed to benefit the entire Nation, aims to facilitate the synergy between state decisions, local initiatives and community actions, for the achievement of development objectives on a democratic and consensual basis.”

After a warm welcome in Oussouye, the kings of Sine and Oussouye invited the two communities to perpetuate these meetings, but also to look into the future of their communities, the role they can play in the development of the country. . Moreover, in his speech during the official ceremony held at the royal court of Oussouye, Maa Sinig Niokhobaye Diouf Fatou Diène, the king of Sine, returned to the very strong moments with their Diola cousins. “We communed together. It is an old tradition that we have perpetuated between the members of the two communities who are cousins. We found this relationship well maintained by our grandfathers, we have continued to maintain these links today.”

Echoing these words, the King of Oussouye confirmed the words of his peer. He also praised the centuries-old relationship that exists between the two communities. This caravan was also an opportunity for the two communities to show their multiple cultural facets. Through a cultural evening in the public square of Oussouye, Sérères and Diolas unveiled an artistic program that was also a traditional show.

In Diola and Serer mythology, Aguène and Diambogne were two sisters who once took a canoe to cross the Gambia River. But, their boat split in two, causing their separation. According to some historians, this legend begins in Ndakhonga, where the boat left for the high seas before it broke in two. One took the direction of the South, Aguène, the mother of the Diolas. And the other, that of the North, Diambogne, the mother of the Serers. This legend is today the foundation of the pleasant cousinage between Diolas and Sérères, cement of a peaceful cohabitation between the two communities.