Singing and beating drums -many with their faces painted – Senegalese took to the streets to celebrate Tajabone, the West African version of Ashoura.
Dancing through the streets of their neighbourhoods, Monday, the, mainly, young people stop at the homes of their friends to sing.
And in exchange people donate money or food.
“Since our childhood we have this atmosphere in every Tajabone. When we were children, we used to pay 500 francs to make small drums to celebrate the Ashura, but now we do it with real drums to keep this tradition alive” said Bakhaw Ndoye, the singer of one of the several groups seen on the streets of Dakar.
Ashoura is one of the most emotional days in the Shiite Muslims religious calendar which commemorates the 7th Century martyrdom of the Prophet Muhammad’s grandson Hussein.
In addition to music, the tradition includes the practice of cross dressing. Men dress as women and vice versa.
Some conservative societies disapprove of this but in Senegal it is still practised by children in some areas.