Thursday, 31 March 2011

Pressure mounting in Dakar as deadlines grow ever closer, but the whole team are getting very excited about their transition to a new publishing platform. It's not without its difficulties, but the process of migration is very satisfying, helped ably by the talents of the team here. Many are stringers or correspondents for international publications such as the Guardian, others have reputation within Senegal or their home country (it's a very diverse group) of being the leading news journalist. Very often, reports you'll hear from West Africa – like the Ivory Coast escalation currently – will start here at West Africa Democracy Radio.

They have amazing contacts and an equally amazing manner that, through respect and knowledge, manage to get them access to presidents and religious leaders (often equally if not more influential) on a regular basis. As I speak, the UN Security Council are passing motions on embargoes, finally recognising the severe situation in the country. WADR ran an interview today which preempted most of the international coverage and without a doubt offered a more complex and informed view of the situation.

Our evening was spent trying to unwind, a local bar, essentially someone's backyard with a glowing beer advert on the outside. Super friendly, amazing beer, fantastic food – and my first mosquito bite. Night falls here almost instantly, plunging the city into darkness and once more it comes to life.

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