Food crisis looms as Ebola rampages through West Africa


Africa Child - Public Domain

The mango season finished early for Mamadou Barry, a fruit vendor in Marche Kermel, an old covered market in the Senegalese capital Dakar. Where stalls once brimmed with tropical produce imported from neighbouring Guinea, the Ebola-related border closure has emptied the tables.

Barry, of Guinean origin like many storekeepers in Senegal, has been going back and forth between the two countries for three years. He says the government’s positive aim of keeping Senegal Ebola-free has had a negative impact on his livelihood.

“With the shortage of fruit coming in our income has decreased. Some people manage to sneak across the border and get back without being caught, but most of us don’t take that risk so we can’t provide for our families,” said Barry, 55, as he closed down his stall for the day.

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