Fishing is one of the main sources of the development of Conakry. Many years ago, the population of Conakry suffered because of the lack of ressources and equipments.
For some, the situation is getting better, but for some fishers, everything is the same as 30 years ago.
For example, in the port of Boulbinet, which is the port of the capital city, Conakry, the oldest guinean coast.
When we talk about docks, we see boats…
Alseny has been a carpenter for more than 30 years. To make a boat, he needs 20 planks and he needs one week when he has all the material. Sometimes, he spends 3 months without working. He receives personnal « orders », not from the government. When he started, he was doing it by himself, but after a few years, he made enough money to pay some « apprentice » to help him. Since he started, everything is going better for him. The boat brings him 20 to 50 millions.
Mohamed Dioubaté has been a fisherman since at a young age, in 1970, he started this job. During all these years he always did the same routine: fishing and selling. Dioubate is a very patient person because it is a very delicate job to make the net. He uses sewing net and needles. The number of sewing nets depends on the size of the one fishing net. It can take 2 to 3 days and it is a very difficult job, because all the meshes must have the same size and if the net is destroyed, it has to be fixed. When the net is ready, Mohamed and his friends go to the sea to catch fish. They are 20 fishermen in a little boat. They have to go in the middle of the sea because there, there is a lot of fish.
They throw the net and they wait 10 minutes if there is a lot of fish ; sometimes they can wait a week when there are no fish. When the 20 fishermen arrive on dry ground, they show the fishes to the owner of the boat and he takes the one that interest him . The ones which are left will be shared between the fishermen. The owner of the boat can earn up to 1 million per day and the fishermen 150 000 GNF a day. Sometimes, they earn less than that. So, they have to ask people to help them to eat.
Coneh Camara is a fish seller, she started this work 20 years ago. When she started, it was very difficult for her because she was young, about 15. She didn’t go to school so she has to work very hard to feed her family (little sister and brother). Every day, she had to go early to the dock and buy fish with the fishermen and sell it.
Coneh is a strong woman, because now after many efforts, she has bought her own boat so she can arrive whenever she wants. She got married and had children. She managed to put her children to school because when she was young, going to school was her big dream. She is very proud of herself because she achieved her dream moreover she used her money to invest in other kinds of businesses (rice, oil…).
Guinea is getting developed, all together, hands in hands, we will make it.
We want to thank all the people who accepted to answer our questions and believe in our project. We hope for Dioubaté that he will have a better life and be proud of his country.
We are the future generation and we need to act for the oldest one.
By Bintou Camara, Manira Berete, Julie Ngassa and Pamela Perez. Pictures by Pamela Perez.