Laurent Bonardi: Corsican by birth, Senegal at heart | APAnews

Laurent Bonardi: Corsican by birth, Senegal at heart | APAnews
Laurent Bonardi: Corsican by birth, Senegal at heart | APAnews

Very active on social networks, Laurent Bonardi wishes to contribute in a way highly appreciated by his subscribers to the march towards a new Senegal.

On the social network X (formerly Twitter), the name of his profile associated with the Senegalese flag seems to intrigue some of his subscribers. It is not every day that they see a “toubab” (expression designating a white foreigner in West Africa) publicly mention his Senegalese nationality and proudly claim it as Laurent Bonardi does. Born in Corsica, in the south of France, this Franco-Senegalese arrived in Senegal twelve years ago, after traveling in America, Asia and Africa.

From these travels, he acquired extensive experience in educational sciences which he now puts to the service of Senegal. He does not hesitate to share this expertise on social networks, thus strengthening his reputation among his many followers. “ I began my career as a teacher-researcher in various universities while advising elected officials on my home island. Then, I felt the need to contribute to change in another way, by leading international educational institutions and groups in the United States, United Arab Emirates and West Africa. I also had the opportunity to work as an advisor in Abu Dhabi », explains this doctor in human sciences.

His love affair with Senegal began a decade ago. Arrived as “ immigrant » – a term he prefers to “ expatriate » – Mr. Bonardi quickly integrated into the Senegalese sun. Over the years, this expert in education and educational policies has adopted the culture of his adopted country, despite the prejudices often associated with his region of origin in France.

Political commitment

Corsica is not criticized for its racism. Many people confuse this with the independence movement which campaigns for the independence of the island “, he specifies, affirming his “ pride in having become a Senegalese citizen » and his support for Bassirou Diomaye Faye during the last presidential election.

On each major subject that drives city life, Laurent Bonardi analyses, takes a position and shares his opinion on social networks, sparking informative exchanges. This is what motivated him, among other things, to get involved alongside the fifth Senegalese president, to contribute to a more modern management of the Center for University Works in Dakar (Coud) and to promote a cultural policy linked to tourism .

Beyond any political consideration, becoming Senegalese means much more to me than a simple question of papers. I have always worked for my country, Senegal, and for my Senegalese compatriots. I firmly believe in active citizenship, which consists of working daily for the common good. Senegal is full of inspiring examples in this area “, he emphasizes.

With his expertise in educational sciences, the Franco-Senegalese expert is convinced that “ education is the most powerful investment a state can make, because investing in human capital gives a nation the means to succeed “. He therefore encourages the new authorities to make one “ priority “, while the quality of public education is increasingly criticized, despite claims by former leaders that nearly 40% of the national budget was allocated to this sector.

A book on Senegalese education

To respond to the various problems of Senegalese education, Laurent Bonardi develops solutions in his next book, “ Knowledge horizons », to be published by New African Editions of Senegal (NEAS). According to him, Senegal has enough resources to create “ his own model » educational, while drawing inspiration from what works well elsewhere.

In this work, he addresses issues such as infrastructure, educational approaches and content, the inclusion of students with disabilities, technical and vocational education, as well as teacher training. “ My intention is neither to lecture nor to criticize, but rather to contribute to reflection in an area in which I have developed expertise over the last twenty years », specifies this Senegalese of Corsican origin, who also takes a look at the evolution “ diverse and complex » from other African countries.

Like a light in Africa, Senegal, renowned for its democracy, recently entrusted the management of the country to leaders declaring themselves sovereignists. Elsewhere on the continent, citizens and civil society organizations continue to campaign for a return to more democratic states.

As on other continents, there are notable differences from one country to another. However, I see a common denominator: the growing expectations of new generations in terms of transparency, sovereignty, sustainable development and the desire to promote active citizenship. At the same time, there is a desire to preserve certain values, which is very encouraging because they guarantee identity », concludes the Franco-Senegalese.

ODL/ac/APA

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