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Old 02-06-2006, 05:15 PM   #421
gagnaou
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Location: FLint Hills
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeeBee
Very sad news indeed.

PRESS RELEASE OF THE DAKAR ORGANISATION
This morning at 10:00 AM, at km 25 of the special of stage 13 of the rally between LABE and TAMBACOUNDA, just 6kms before the village of Kourahoye, a young boy that had come with his family to see the rally go by, was hit by vehicle n°420 of the car class while crossing the track.

He immediately received treatment from the medical staff of the rally but died during his transfer by helicopter to Labé.

The organisation expresses its sadness to the family of the child.
According an email list I am a member of, the french medias and some vocal people have been quick to question weather or not the Dakar should be abandoned or not. It was interesting to see an article from a major french paper published today that brings in some interesting view.

Please note that there is no intend from me to minimize the tragic loss of a human life, I just thought you might be interested by the perspective presented, here is a google translation of the Liberation article:



"Boubacar lost in the euphoria of Dakar
Return to Labé, in Guinea, which still lives under the magic of the passage of the race. In spite of the accident which, January 13, cost the life the one of his/her children.

By Marie-Laure COLSON
Monday February 06, 2006



Guinea sent special



years the afternoon of January 12, of the thousands of badauds had the splendid proof that aircraft could land on the aerodrome of Labé. Accomodated by the cheers, twenty-two planes and nine helicopters were posed on the laterite track of this regional capital of Guinea. Enthusiasm was all the more large as well for a long time the tarmac was reserved the cows, goats, to pedestrians and to cyclists who walk on of the downtown area to the corrugated sheet roofs hidden in the bush, on the other side of the track. These "machines of the last generation", like known as Bohari, interprets in vernacular languages, "came like a dream from Europe", the drag of an inaccessible bride. They transported the continuation of Paris-Dakar and inaugurated a festival which was going to last until the following day midday.

For this memorable day, the commander of the airport has been bored. Fifteen days passed, but it balks to dismount the bivouac which accomodated the competitors of the rally. Decorated according to the culture peule, majority population in the area of Fouta-Djalon, the camping had largely contributed to make stage guinéenne, halfway between Mali and Senegal, one of most cordial of the course. Its thatch and wood skeleton is the last memory of this day of rejoicing. The track, rammed thanks to the financing of the ASO, the organizer of the rally (to read opposite), is become again rambla. Guinea does not have planes to ensure the interior lines. The commander is in full crisis of paludism, but it is all the same there. Like says it a civil servant, "one is in a special country, where the head of the State can at the last time to take his plane and to land anywhere, without preventing". Does not repaint of nine, the building does not live any more but by its bar. A handle of customers look at the last match of the African Cut of the nations (EDGE) on a small television set. For the occasion, as for the arrival of Dakar, the power was turned on for a few hours. Here, with the variation of the downtown area where throne a new service station bright burning coal, still a gift of Dakar, one benefits from the spectacle, with the shelter of overflowings of joy or anger of end of part. The sport forms part, in Guinea, of the rare occasions to express something. It is true that the results of the international matches are often less foreseeable than those of the local elections.

4 X 4 n° 420 "rolled at a suicidal speed"

With some 30 kilometers from there, under the large tree which marks the entry of Kourawoui-Dalein, of "old hand" the vêtus of boubous listen, them also, the retransmission of the match, the ear stuck to a transistor. In front of them extend the slopes wooded from Fouta-Djalon and the tortuous track which the competitors of Dakar borrowed. It is here, at the entry of the village, that on January 13, "counters any waiting", according to the report of the gendarmes guinéens, 4 X 4 n° 420, "rolling at a suicidal speed", struck Boubacar Diallo "of full whip and mortally, i.e. the child was ratatiné" , the report/ratio of the men of the order continues. The crew letton was in the medium of a coast, it stopped immediately. The medical helicopter of Dakar arrived and took on board the boy, to whom them first aid were given. But Boubacar, 12 years, died before arriving at the hospital of Labé.

The mortuary is a small hut made up of two tiled parts, in the medium of the concession of the hospital. Patients wait in a semi-darkness, some goats mâchonnent fabric remains. It is here that Boubacar was washed and wrapped in a shroud. The representatives of Dakar, the governor of the area, the ministers present on the race and the brought parents of the village by helicopter, everyone was there. The child was very quickly buried, because it was Moslem and that the mortuary is not equipped to keep deaths. This day, tells Dr. Yeamou Marcel, "there was enough agitation and we had the visit of our friends doctors of Dakar, who left us small equipment of sterilization and bandages. It is a small gesture, but it is symbolically large and I thank them. One is always needy ". And then, it, notable event in a country add where the electrical current is a scarcity, "one could make radios". Those of the three men of safety touched by stones launched by young people, impatient to approach the competitors.

"Our only regret, it is this small"

There were many people downtown, this day, for the weekend of Tabaski, the festival of the sacrifice, and for Dakar. "When the competitors arrived, crowd was such as it opened with the gauge vehicles, Alassane Camara remembers, of the guinéenne Federation of the mechanical sports. A motorcyclist put himself upright on his machine and made a demonstration." The public is delirious of joy and tries to force a passage to the participants. "the forces of safety wanted to act, they were made type. But it was right euphoria. I saw people removing dust on a wind-breaker of motorcyclist and brawling to keep a little this dust on the hands." The festivities nevertheless are stopped, the musicians remballent their instruments. That could have been worse, confirms the doctor of Labé. "One can say that that occurred well. Our only regret, it is this small. The last time, I remember, the driver had wanted to see the body of the child." In 1996, already, a 3 year old young girl had been mortally wounded in Guinea by a motorcyclist. "But you know, people here are very a monk, that allows to support. What arrives was decided in advance, it is anchored in the heads."

The road and the tracks which start from Labé, 20 000 inhabitants, are encumbered overloaded puffing trucks of bags to which passengers clutch themselves, old full cars to crack, motor bikes and bicycles in front of which flee cows, goats, sheep and chickens. At the dry season, the villages are emptied the day to carry out the cattle towards water points. Women and children make kilometers along the ways suitable for motor vehicles to go to the market, to seek wood or water. This Friday 13, there was crowd with Kourawoui. People had made up to 20 kilometers with foot and slept on the spot to attend the passage of the race, the gendarme in worn uniform ensures which "keeps" the village.

"Dakar makes live people"

Bohari, the interpreter, who speaks the peul and knows the local habit, took a few hours with the old ones, "of noble", so that the foreign one obtains the right to see the parents of Boubacar, introduced like pertaining to the lowest caste. "It remains, in this country, explains Alassane Camara, something of mistrust towards the foreigner who was of setting under the late mode" * to hear the autocratic mode of Sékou Touré, died in 1984. Guinea, which it had been reproached, ten years ago, at the time of the preceding passage of Dakar, its lack of organization and its administration meddles, has, this year, put the package to facilitate the formalities of police force and to correct its image of not very accessible country. It went there from the honor of the country, all the ministries concerned thus put part. "From abroad come on our premises and set out again with an image, and this image is diffused on more than 120 chains of television, points out the secretary-general of youth and the sports, Alassane Sow. The accident occurred to Guinea, that could have been in Mali or Morocco. An accident on a rally, I consider that it is a less evil. Dakar brews much money and that made live people: the craftsmen sold, the banks changed, the taxis transported, the hotel ones lodged... There are people here who do not gain 50 euros per annum and there, they will gain 300 or 400 euros. For Guinea, the balance is positive."

Close to the large tree the school of Kourawoui is. There is no empty place on the bench which Boubacar occupied. Its class counts more than 60 children. The eyes of the teacher are wet when it speaks about the child: "a nice fellow, it was good in mathematics." The pupils answer in chorus: "Yes Mister" when it asks to them whether Dakar is a good thing. Small hands rise for saying that it is necessary that the rally returns, but that it should not kill the children. "the rural radios had diffused instructions, said the teacher . Myself, I had said to them to remain to the edge, but small A escaped with his mother." When one asks the two best buddies of Boubacar what they played, all the three, after the school, they timidly describe what other children, elsewhere, would call of the drudgeries: the evening, they were going to seek wood, Sunday, they studied Coran...

"Especially, that it returns!"

To arrive at the concession of the Diallo family, it is necessary to take a narrow way which passes in front of the cemetery hidden in grasses where is fall it from Boubacar, to climb several fences of supposed branches to protect the cultures from the animals. The mother, Siradiouma, are small a 29 year old woman, sitting in withdrawal with the women, close to her box. The father, Mamadou Saliou Diallo, do not have cows, the pride of Peuls. It leads those of the others to water and cultivates fonio, a kind of millet. It is 40 years old and is as small as his wife. In front of the old ones which made procession while coming from the tree, it explains: "a motor bike had already passed, the vehicle came, the hélico was in the air. People thought that it was going to land, they were taken of fear. The child ran on the road." "the version of the helicopter, I had never heard it", grommelle Bohari. According to first testimonys', it would seem that the mother, who had come to see the procession with Boubacar and her two small daughters, has, as the remainder of the assistance, crossed the road on several occasions to be able to follow eyes the competitors which assembled this coast in S. "It feels faulty, everyone thinks that it is its fault", Bohari comments on. "the helicopter, that does not pose a problem, takes again the father. It is a beautiful spectacle." It says that if Dakar passes by again in 2007, it again will see it in family. "Especially, that it returns!" repeat it with a broad smile. The old ones approve head.

Siradiouma est enceinte d'un quatrième enfant, elle accouchera bientôt. L'ASO a payé les funérailles et prévu un pécule, le temps que les assurances indemnisent la famille. A quelque 300 mètres de l'entrée du village, on a déposé une branche sur le bord de la piste. A côté, une petite pierre ensanglantée disparaît sous la poussière rouge de la piste.

http://www.liberation.fr/page.php?Article=357015

"

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