Purpose of the Conference
The African Conference at Bamako/Mali was successfully carried out from 25 th to 26 th of May 2017.
From the Word Women’s Conference of grass root women 2016 in Nepal the method of these continental conferences was developed. So the militant women from all different nations may be connected and may support mutually.
The African coordinator Awa from Mali had called up the conference. Participants from Mali, Togo, Democratic Republic of Congo and from Burkina Faso came to the assembly.
Representatives of South Africa, Namibia, Kenya and Morocco were missing because of visa problems or due to lack of financial means for travel costs. Because the costs of internal-African flights are as high as from Europe. Thus a flight from South Africa costs 1,000 Euros to Mali.
The financal support of 4,000 Euro from German friends as there is the Women’s Association Courage was not enough for the execution of the conference and the travel expenses.
The daily fight of the African women
The problems resemble themselves Africa wide: Unemployment – especially of women - is very high. As an example reports a participant from Mali:
The women cannot sell their products any longer, weaving mills were closed down.
„Without sale of the products we cannot buy new material. Thus we must send our children into the gold mines. In the mines they get sick from work, because that work is very dangerous from the poisons with which the gold is extracted. Everything is poisoned there, even the food they eat. If they come back home alive, they will have no chance but migration as their unique choise.
Mali is the third biggest gold producer of Africa. In the gold mines at least 20,000 children reduce the metal in demand under lethal conditions. In order to separate the gold from the ore to, mercury is heated up. Mercury ranks among the most poisonous substances of the earth. Alone the Malian small mining industry produces 4,000 Kilos of gold in the year for foreign customers. The gold goes into the emirates for decoration and into Switzerland for clock production.The only way out for the children and young people in Mali however remains the migration.
A lot more of topics are discussed: The war day, as it is daily conditions in Mali, the environmental crisis in Togo, where the sea level robs annually 10 meters of the country and leads to desertification, the environmental poison Glyphosat, that is sprayed in the cotton fields in Burkina Fasa and which as a consequence has annual death from 20.000 humans all over the world, all these intolerable accompaniments of the profit system became accused.
The conference and the merging of grassroots women can not solve the problems of the individual. It can only be the coordination per country and Africa.
The central question is how can work at the base be developed. It also has to be clarified where the problems come from.
The association with the German girlfriends is judged by the participants as important for the fact that women between North and South can connect and help with the financing.
The financing turns out as an crucial point.One participant raises the question: “Without work I can not afford to spend the movement.” How is the way out there?
Proposals from Germany for financial work include the sale of artisans to 95% for craftswomen,5% for the World Women’s Conference and in addition the organization of an Africa week with culture und arts in Europe.
However, this must first be discussed and decided in Europe.