Northwest Africa’s Mauritania often struck me as a true fly-over state, when I flew over it on my way home from greener parts of the continent. Despite my interest in people and places, from the cockpit of the private aviation planes I pilot, nothing I could see down below in Mauritania attracted me. Rather, looking below, I was all the more glad for sufficient fuel on board to continue to Western Sahara or Morocco or maybe even the Canary Islands. Every time I crossed it, the country tidily became an uncompelling memory as soon as I exited Mauritanian airspace.
But that all changed after it became one of my destinations.
Third-culture kids—non-Senegalese teenagers growing up in Senegal—aim their lenses around their city, transporting us into the scenes of Senegal they know as high school students in Dakar, the capital of this West African country.
October’s civic action in Nigeria calls for an end to a Nigerian form of police brutality targeting young people. While our recent View From a Pandemic story about protests during the pandemic highlighted the way protests against police violence transcend national boundaries, this story zooms in for a closer look at details that make global stories unique at the local level. Our contributor in Nigeria helps us understand the specifics of the call for change, as they stood on October 14, and why, no matter how similar the images may appear, each call for local action is its own chapter within humanity’s global story.!-- wp:paragraph -->
PHOTOS AND TEXT BY/PHOTOGRAPHIES ET TEXTE PAR A.J. JOHNSON
FRENCH PROOFREADING BY/RELECTURE FRANÇAISE PAR CAROLINE BERNARD-GILBERT
ENGLISH TRANSLATION BY/TRADUCTION ANGLAISE PAR KAMI L. RICE
While the horns of two taxis blare, further noise rattles the Lomé intersection of Sagbado. “Olé yia, Olé yia?” (“Do you need a ride?”) cry out the drivers of motorcycle-taxis as they rush toward the car taxis that have just stopped in front of the Sanol gas station. The motorcycle drivers hope to attract the attention of passengers exiting the larger taxis and gain another fare by taking them to the passengers’ final destination. The scene is nothing new. It takes place over and over again all day long, from the rising to the setting of the sun. However, for the past few months, since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis and especially since the government decreed a curfew and state of emergency, a new group of venders has joined the motorcycle-taxis at this intersection.
TEXT BY SARATU O. SAMANDE, ESQ. STREET PHOTOGRAPHS AND CAPTIONS BY DESMOND OKON
A Nigerian teenager hawking masks in traffic. Mask hawkers have become a common sight in Nigeria. Since the mandatory wearing of the face cover was announced by the government, many Nigerians survive by selling masks.