The famous Senegal International Jazz Festival scheduled to happen in the northwestern region of Saint-Louis will finally take place next week as planned after authorities reversed their decision to cancel it on security grounds.
Most important jazz festival in Africa.
The festival, the 24th edition, scheduled to take place from May 11 – 15, is the most important jazz festival in Africa and annually gathers musicians from all over the world to share the roots of African music and culture. Last Tuesday, the authorities announced the cancellation of the event over security concerns which raised wide condemnation.
A statement from the Prefecture of Saint Louis Region on Thursday said the decision is rescinded following rigorous consultation with the organizers and all relevant authorities.
Organizers commit millions to address security concerns
Lack of security was to compromise this year’s festival but today after consultations, organizers committed 10 million CFA Francs to support the security budget to ensure the security of the event. The organizers welcomed the reversion of the decision by the authorities saying if the festival was indeed cancelled ‘it would have been a victory’ for the terrorists. On their tweeter account, the organizers tweeted: "victory: the ban on the Saint-Louis Jazz Festival is lifted."
Opposition to cancellation.
Earlier, international music star and godfather of Mbalax Youssou Ndour also voiced his opposition to the cancellation of the event insisting that the festival must be held at all cost, probably with a different organization procedure but not a definite cancellation.
Cuban pianist Omar Sosa, US jazz fusion bassist Marcus Miller and Senegal's own Cheikh Lo were all scheduled to perform.
Constant threat from terror group.
Senegal, which has banned the Muslim women wear Burqa over fear of it being used by extremists to hide, signed a defense agreement with the United States on Monday. The West African nation which started gas exploration has managed to avoid the deadly attacks on Western targets that plagued their neighbors in Mali, Ivory Coast, and Burkina Faso. The nation is under constant attack threats from Boko Haram which has targeted the Lake Chad nations of Nigeria, Chad, Niger and Cameroon and more so, Al-Qaeda in the Magrib and Ansaar Deen, both of which have their base in the Sahara. #Foreign Policy #Terrorism #Foreign Affairs