Wade’s Daughter In $66m Arts Festival Scandal

An audit report has revealed $66 million was misappropriated by organizers of the third World Festival of Black Arts held in Dakar in December 2010 by the daughter of Senegal’s former president, Abdoulaye Wade.

An article on Senegal’s most popular online publication Seneweb.com said investigations were launched but left incomplete by the government of then President Abdoulaye Wade.

The story’s source quoted reports published by the State Inspectorate General to which the new government delegated the responsibility of completing the investigations holding that ex-president Wade’s daughter, Sindjely and her co-organizer Alioune Sow were the main culprits behind the financial mismanagement.

Mr Sow was a former spokesmen for the presidency and of the then ruling Parti Démocratique Sénégalais (pds).

But in her reaction Friday, Sindjely Wade acknowledged that she could only be held accountable for about 250 million cfa francs, approximately $125,000.

She pledged to refund the loss anytime.

The audit report indicated that the government of Senegal disbursed 78 billion francs (approximately $156 million) towards the hosting of the world event.

But the audit further revealed that an earlier amount of 15 billion francs ($30 million) was allocated by the national treasury for the project.

The online media report especially focused on the part of the audit report that touched on vehicle rents which indicated that 15 vehicles were contracted for the period of 20 days and the sum of three billion francs, $6 million, paid to hire them.

The World Festival of Black Arts, also known as FESMAN, is a month-long culture and arts festival that takes place in Africa. The festival features poetry, sculpture, painting, music, cinema, theatre, fashion, architecture, design and dance from artists and performers from around the continent and the African Diaspora.

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