Remembering the victims

A concert on first anniversary of Senegalese shootings

Editorial Staff
November 22, 2012

On December 13, exactly a year after the shooting of two Senegalese men, Mor Diop and Modou Samb, and the wounding of others in piazza Dalmazia and in the San Lorenzo area, the City of Florence is organising a concert at the Mandela Forum to remember the victims and raise money for their families.

 

Great names in both Italian and Senegalese music, such as Super Diamono, one of the most popular Senegalese bands, will perform together on stage at the concert, which will be attended by Italy's minister of international cooperation, Andrea Riccardi, and Yousson Ndour, current minister of culture in Senegal and one of the country's most popular artists. The Italian musicians taking part will be revealed in the days leading up to the concert.

 

The Florentine interviewed city councillor for welfare and international cooperation, Stefania Saccardi, who said that the concert grew out of calls from many people asking the City of Florence to pay tribute to the victims and their families: ‘We were contacted by the Italian ambassador in Dakar, Arturo Luzi, who offered his collaboration and that of his embassy for a joint Italy/Senegal event. We then contacted the Senegalese community in Florence and enlisted the help of other organisations in the city, without which it would have been impossible to organize an event like this. These organizations included the Mandela Forum Association, the Music Pool Association and Arci.'

 

Driven by the need to contribute to and reaffirm the strong and polyphonic message of solidarity that emerged in the days and weeks following the shootings, the City believed a musical event would be the most suitable way to pay tribute to the victims and their families. 'By organising this event, we want to offer the city of Florence a chance to reaffirm, in a collective manner, that we have not forgotten and we wanted to do this through music.'

 

Saccardi believes the tribute 'will be a beautiful evening of music, an important moment of closeness, a collective act to condemn racism, a tribute to the broken lives and a song in support of those who were seriously injured,' she stated.

 

The concert is called Jokko, which means 'communication' and 'dialogue' in Wolof, a language of Senegal. Tickets cost 10 euro (from www.comune.fi.it/jokko), and the proceeds will go entirely to the families of the victims. It will also be streamed live and accessible in Senegal, where, according to Stefania Saccardi, ‘there is a great deal of attention given to this event, and where people want a united Florentine, Italian and Senegalese voice which says "No".'

 

On the morning of the concert, the Senegalese Association of Florence will hold a conference focusing on the elimination of racism and xenophobia, and it is asking for a moment of silent reflection in local schools. See www.mandelaforum.it for concert details.

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