Wednesday Nov 16, 2022

Casablanca: who owns the city #6 Samba Soumbounou

After taking us to Lac d’Oulfa, Sidi Moumen and Hay Mohammedi for our vertical field trip (talk #2), today Samba Soumbounou brings us to the neighbourhood where he first settled in Casa, arriving from Mauretania 10 years ago. He is a cultural engineer and mediator: connecting dots and making these connections meaningful and productive. Samba is the embodiment of social glue, extremely approachable, always willing to ‘step in’. During our stay his phone rings frequently and many people stop him in the streets to ask something or to just say hi. It earned him the hashtag #letscallsamba!

We talk about the divide between people and policy making: the lack of communication. It makes sense that this topic matters to Samba. In Mauretania the Soumbounou family is responsible for the collective memory: to pass things on. His family is also associated with playing the drum. In Mauritanian culture the drum connects and harmonises. In Casablanca there is a lot to harmonise – capital investors, builders, politics, citizens: they don’t communicate well. In the end the city is determined by people, not buildings. It is not about the ‘what’. It is about the ‘who’ and ‘how’. 

 

References:

Kandara’Lab : Villes - Culture - Patrimoine (Samba Soumbounou, field trip guide)
https://www.facebook.com/kandaralab/?modal=admin_todo_tour
Afrikayna, foundation for pan-african mobility
https://afrikayna.com/mobilite-artistique/
Café Espace de l’enfant, au parc la foret vert
http://maps.app.goo.gl/RbPBJFPZkETkeNbEA?g_st=iw 

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