GIC Talk Preview: Senegal, a Country of West Africa – Link between Religion, Politics and Culture

Hello, my name is Mamadou Cisse. I am a KOICA student and I am earning my MBA at Chonnam National University. It is a great opportunity for me to share with you about my country.

Senegal is a country on the coast of West Africa, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean in the West. With an area of 196,722 km², the country has a population of about 14.8 million people (as of 2016), and the capital and largest city is Dakar. The spoken languages are French (official), Wolof, Serere, Diola, Pular and other languages from minority ethnic groups.

The Senegalese people are 94 percent Muslim divided into Tijan, Murid, Khadr and Ibadu Rahman practices. The majority of Muslims live in total harmony with the five percent of the population that is Christian in the country.

Senegal has a tropical, hot and humid climate and has two seasons: the rainy season that starts from May and ends in November, and the dry season that begins in December.

Independent from France since 1960, Senegal joined with The Gambia, which is an enclave inside Senegal, to form the nominal confederation of Senegambia in 1982. However, the envisaged integration of the two countries was never carried out, and the union was dissolved in 1989.

During the Presidential elections in March 2000, Senegal has shown to the world that the country has a strong democracy which is considered to be as one of the earliest democracies in Africa. In this field of politics, religious leaders are known to be very influential in Senegalese people’s decisions in regards to their choice of their candidates. Though turned into a modern society, Senegal is still a country where the caste system prevails.

Senegal has a long history of participating in international peacekeeping and is a welcoming country with its legendary hospitality known as “Teranga.” Come, learn and travel with me to Senegal, on Saturday, November 26 at 3 p.m. in the First Floor Hall at the Gwangju International Center!

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