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Gold Mining in Burkina Faso

OUAGADOUGOU, 30 August 2012 (IRIN) - A boom in Burkina Faso’s gold mining over the past three years has made the country one of Africa’s leading producers. According to the Ministry of Finance, gold has become the top export commodity. In 2011, it earned Burkina Faso 127 billion CFA (US$247 million). Between 2007 and 2011, it brought in 440 billion CFA, accounting for 64.7 percent of all exports and 8 percent of GDP. Production rose from 23 tons in 2010 to 32 tons in 2011. Gold mines are spread across the country’s northern, western, southwestern and central regions. Some 800 traditional mining sites, where most children work, have also opened, luring children - some as young as six - out of school.
The exact number of children abandoning schools nationally for the mines is still unclear, but many schoolchildren are known to work mainly in artisanal mines where they crush stones, sieve dust, transport water and cook. Others go to the mines during school off-days on Thursdays and Saturdays, said Moussa Ouedraogo, the Ministry for National Education and Literacy director for the country’s northern region. Abdoul Moumouni Kaboré, 17, said many children work at the mines to support their families. “I came for holidays and I have never gone back to Ouagadougou because around us a lot of boys are caring for their families with the money they are making from the site,” said Kaboré, who has been working at a mine in Pousguin for the last two months. “You need to work hard and wait for your luck. I can’t go back home until I get something because people will laugh at me.”
From: humanitarian news and analysis, a service of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] http://www.irinnews.org/report/96210/BURKINA-FASO-Gold-rush-hits-education
The photos shown in this gallery are all from traditional mining sites where people (including kids) dig the ground with simple tools hoping to find some grains of gold.

I published two further photo galleries about Burkina Faso: “Impressions from Burkina Faso“ http://www.pbase.com/neuenhofer/impressions_from_burkina_faso and “Healers, soothsayers and magic places in Burkina Faso” http://www.pbase.com/neuenhofer/healers_soothsayers_and_magic_places_in_burkina_faso (the same gallery in French: "Guérisseurs, devins et féticheurs et des places magiques à Burkina Faso" http://www.pbase.com/neuenhofer/guerisseurs_devins_et_feticheur_burkina_faso )

Have a preview of my complete book about Burkina Faso (130 pages with lots of photos). The texts in the book are in German. If you do not speak German, just enjoy the photos!

Burkina Faso by Christa Neuenhofer | Make Your Own Book
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining between Gaoua ond Pô, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Tiny gold grain found at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Tiny gold grain found at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining child at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining child at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining child at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining child at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold mining at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold miners´shabby huts at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Gold miners´shabby huts at Kassola, near Tiébélé, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Closed down gold mine at Laongo, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Closed down gold mine at Laongo, Centre-Sud Region, Burkina Faso
Now stones are taken from the former gold mine and are cut into pieces, Laongo, Burkina Faso
Now stones are taken from the former gold mine and are cut into pieces, Laongo, Burkina Faso
Stones from the former gold mine are cut into pieces and sold for house building, Laongo, Burkina Faso
Stones from the former gold mine are cut into pieces and sold for house building, Laongo, Burkina Faso