Shopping arcades, the other FESPACO

Between screening sessions, panels and musical entertainments, shopping arcades also attract a lot of people, but not that many.

Like in previous editions, FESPACO 2021 is also attended by exhibitors and restaurant owners. On the different shelves, one can find some traditional loincloth, jewellery, decorative objects, shoes and many other items. However, exhibitors are complaining about the lack of enthusiasm from people and buyers. Franck BOUDA and his friend, from Senegal, find it difficult selling out their leather products. “We are not selling, since this morning we did not sell anything, but we’re hopeful things will get better”. This hope is also shared by Noufou Traore who came from Banfora with local fabrics and other products. “Customers come in, have a look, ask for prices but don’t buy anything”, he said. On the other hand, restaurant and pub owners are good for business, especially in the evening. Between grills, fried food and drinks, everything runs smoothly and they are busy satisfying their customers. Some exhibitors at the Headquarters deplore the fact that a badge is required for accessing the site. Overall, since the opening of this year’s edition of the African Cinema Biennale, the relocated shopping arcade is not very well-attended as usual.

Delphine BANISSI