4 February 2018

The first week of this trip was with cool nights and little dust in the air. This past week dust is back and temperatures are not decreasing at night as for the first week.

News from Burkina

On the education front, the unions and the government came to an agreement. Since time was lost with strikes and sit-ins, the school year will be longer and the exams will also be later than usual. The 10-day school holiday planned end of March will become a 4-day holiday. It is not clear what the unions have gained. A lot of promises I guess!!!

In our area the harvests have been very poor, also for cotton. In Burkina there are 3 companies which share the cotton market. Sofitex  is the biggest company. Harvests of “Sofitex farmers”  have been rather poor in comparison with the other companies. Sofitex was accused of providing bad fertilizer and bad treatment products. Their answer to this accusation was a 6-page long argumentation which did not really make sense. The best explanations are the shortest one.

Also this week there was a cabinet reshuffle. People in the street do not really care it seems. Not much expectation from the new ministers.

Market access

We have 2 farms, one in the village of Sokourani and one in the village of Mogobasso. In both farms we have encourage the farmer to grow vegetables during the dry season.

Salia in Sokourani in the middle of his cucumbers.

The problem of Salia is that there are not enough customers for his production. Mid-February he will have a good production of tomatoes, but very few people to sell to. The volume is not big enough to interest a trader from the town which is at 45km.

We have bought some of his production and we will take also his tomatoes for the LAP.

Same situation for the onions of Barro in Mogobasso.

One of the difficulties is the watering of the garden which does not allow them to exploit the whole surface. We will see what we can do if volume is a way to get them customers from the town.

Strange thing

On one of the roads going to Kouekouesso, there is now this sign “Rest area” in the middle of nowhere!!!!! There is probably 1 car per day, 5 motorcycles and 10 bicycles passing on this road per day (all local people).

It is incredible to see that people got funds for this and looking at the logos on the bottom of the  sign, there are many of them…….

Proverb of the week

The most difficult thing to see is what is in front of you.

Le plus difficile à voir est ce que l’on a sous les yeux.

If you have confidence in yourself, you will inspire confidence in others.

Si vous avez confiance en vous-mêmes, vous inspirerez confiance aux autres.

Goethe

Have a good week, be good.

Hervé