Senegal enforces a human rights law

When the Governor General of Canada Michaëlle Jean visited Senegal last April, she claimed publicly for a reform in favor of thousands of young boys of this country. Every year, some parents send them to Koranic schools, but the boys don’t learn anything. In fact, the teachers, usually an Imam or a witch called “Marabou” send the kids in the street and the boys have to collect money in their empty tomato can. If they don’t bring back a sufficient amount, they are hurt. The “Talibés”, the common name of the boys, rather live in poverty in the streets that going back to Koranic schools.

Five years ago, President Wade introduced a new law that made illegal sending kids in the streets. However, the authorities never enforced the law until recently. Moreover, Dakar mayor decided that charity would be only possible near Mosques, Churches and other religious sites.

Since last July, many ads were visible in Dakar and it recalled to the people that they could go to jail and pay a fine of around $4,000 for sending a child on the street.

An article from RFI mentioned on Wednesday, September 8 that, for the first time, a judge sentenced seven Koranic teachers. Human Rights Watch, an international group promoting human rights, said Senegal made a big step, but the more works has to be done.

Posted by Jean-Virgile Tassé-Themens

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