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Ouagadougou (, , ) is the capital of
Burkina Faso Burkina Faso (, ; ) is a landlocked country in West Africa that covers an area of around and is bordered by Mali to the northwest, Niger to the northeast, Benin to the southeast, Togo and Ghana to the south, and the Ivory Coast to the southwes ...
and the administrative, communications, cultural, and economic centre of the nation. It is also the country's largest city, with a population of 2,453,496 in 2019. The city's name is often shortened to ''Ouaga''. The inhabitants are called ''ouagalais''. The spelling of the name ''Ouagadougou'' is derived from the
French orthography French orthography An orthography is a set of conventions for writing Writing is a medium of human communication that involves the representation of a language with written symbols. Writing systems are not themselves human languages (wit ...
common in former French African colonies. Ouagadougou's primary industries are food processing and textiles. It is served by an international airport and is linked by rail to
Abidjan Abidjan ( , ; N’ko: ߊߓߌߖߊ߲߬) is the economic capital of Côte d'Ivoire and one of the most populous French-speaking cities in Africa Africa is the world's second-largest and second-most populous continent, after Asia in both cas ...

Abidjan
in the
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and, for freight only, to Kaya. There are several highways linking the city to Niamey,
Niger Niger or the Niger ( or ; ), officially the Republic of the Niger, is a landlocked country in West Africa named after the Niger River. Niger is bordered by Libya Libya (; ar, ليبيا, Lībīyā), officially the State of Libya, ( ar, ...
, south to Ghana, and southwest to
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. Ouagadougou has one of West Africa's largest markets, which burned down in 2003 and has since reopened with better facilities and improved fire-prevention measures. Other attractions include the National Museum of Burkina Faso, the Moro-Naba Palace (site of the Moro-Naba Ceremony), the National Museum of Music, and several craft markets.


History

The name ''Ouagadougou'' dates back to the 15th century when the Ninsi tribes inhabited the area. They were in constant conflict until 1441 when Wubri, a Yonyonse hero and an important figure in
Burkina Faso Burkina Faso (, ; ) is a landlocked country in West Africa that covers an area of around and is bordered by Mali to the northwest, Niger to the northeast, Benin to the southeast, Togo and Ghana to the south, and the Ivory Coast to the southwes ...
's history, led his tribe to victory. He then renamed the area from "Kumbee-Tenga", as the Ninsi had called it, to "Wage sabre soba koumbem tenga", meaning "head war chief's village". ''Ouagadougou'' is a Francophone spelling of the name. The city became the capital of the Mossi Empire in 1441 and became the permanent residence of the Mossi emperors (Moro-Naba) in 1681.:fr:Ouagadougou The Moro-Naba Ceremony is still performed every Friday by the Moro-Naba and his court. In 1919 the French made Ouagadougou the capital of the French Upper Volta, Upper Volta territory (basically the same area as contemporary Burkina Faso). In 1954 the railroad line from
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reached the city. Ouagadougou's population doubled from 1954 to 1960 and has been doubling about every ten years since. On 15 January 2016, gunmen armed with heavy weapons 2016 Ouagadougou attacks, attacked central Ouagadougou at the Cappuccino restaurant and the Splendid Hotel. 28 people were killed, and at least 56 wounded; after a government counterattack, a total of 176 hostages were released the morning after the initial attack. Three of the perpetrators were also killed.


Geography

Ouagadougou, situated on the central plateau (), grew around the imperial palace of the Mogho Naaba. An administrative centre of colonial rule, it became an important urban centre in the post-colonial era. First the capital of the Mossi Kingdoms and later of Upper Volta and Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou became a veritable communal centre in 1995.


Climate

Ouagadougou's climate is hot semi-arid climate, hot semi-arid (''BSh'') under Köppen-Geiger climate classification system, Köppen-Geiger classification, and closely borders with tropical wet and dry climate, tropical wet and dry (''Aw''). The city is part of the Sudano-Sahelian area, with annual rainfall of about . The rainy season stretches from May to September, with an average temperature of . The cool season runs from October to February, with a minimum average temperature of . The maximum temperature during the hot season, which runs from March to April, can reach . The harmattan (a dry wind) and the West African Monsoon are the two main factors that determine Ouagadougou's climate. Even though Ouagadougou is farther from the equator, its hottest months' temperatures are slightly hotter than those of Bobo-Dioulasso#Climate, Bobo-Dioulasso, the country's list of cities in Burkina Faso#10 largest cities, second most populous city.


Government

Ouagadougou's first municipal elections were held in 1956. The city is governed by a mayor who is elected to a five-year term, two senior councillors, and 90 councillors. The city is divided into five arrondissements, consisting of 30 sectors, which are subdivided into districts. Districts of Ouagadougou include Gounghin, Kamsaoghin, Koulouba, Moemmin, Niogsin, Paspanga, Peuloghin, Bilbalogho, and Tiendpalogo. Seventeen villages comprise the Ouagadougou metropolitan area, which is about . The population of this area is estimated at 1,475,000, 48% of whom are men and 52% women. The rural population is about 5% and the urban population about 95% of the total, and the density is 6,727 inhabitants per square kilometre, according to the 2006 census. Ouagadougou's communes have invested in huge city-management projects. This is largely because Ouagadougou constitutes a 'cultural centre' by merit of holding the SIAO (International Arts and Crafts fair) and the FESPACO (Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou). Moreover, the villages' growing affluence allows for such investment, and the population's rapid growth necessitates it.


Education

Though literacy in Ouagadougou is not high, there are three universities in the city. The largest is the state University of Ouagadougou, which was founded in 1974. In 2010 it had around 40,000 students (83% of the national population of university students). The city's official language is French and the principal local languages are More language, More, Dioula language, Dyula and Fula language, Fulfulde. The bilingual program in schools (French plus one of the local languages) was established in 1994. International schools include: * Lycée Saint-Exupéry de Ouagadougou (French school) * International School of Ouagadougou


Sport

Ouagadougou's inhabitants play a wide array of sports, including association football, basketball, and volleyball. There are tournaments and activities organized by the local authorities. The Stade du 4-Août is the home of Étoile Filante de Ouagadougou, the city's main Association Football, Football team.


Health

Ouagadougou has both state and private hospitals. The two state hospitals in the city are the Centre hospitalier national Yalgado Ouedraogo (CHNYO) and the Centre hospitalier national pédiatrique Charles de Gaulle (CHNP-CDG). Despite that, the local population still largely can only afford traditional local medicine and the "pharmacopée".Commune Ouagadougou.(2005). Mairie de Ouagadougou. Retrieved 19 March 2006 from http://www.mairie-Ouaga.bf


Transport

Many residents travel on motorcycles and mopeds. The large private vendor of motorcycles JC Megamonde sells 50,000 motorbikes and mopeds every year. Ouagadougou's citizens also travel in green taxicab, cabs, which take their passengers anywhere in town for 200 to 400 CFA Franc, CFA, but the price is higher after 10:00 pm and can then reach 1000 CFA Franc, CFA.


Air transport

Thomas Sankara International Airport Ouagadougou (code OUA) serves the area with flights to West Africa and Europe. Air Burkina has its head office in the Air Burkina Storey Building (french: link=no, Immeuble Air Burkina) in Ouagadougou.


Rail

Ouagadougou is connected by passenger rail service to Bobo-Dioulasso, Koudougou and
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. As of June 2014, Rail transport in Burkina Faso, ''Sitarail'' operates a passenger train three times a week along the route from Ouagadougou to Abidjan. There are freight services to Kaya in the north of Burkina Faso and in 2014 plans were announced to revive freight services to the Manganese mine at Tambao starting in 2016.


Economy

The economy of Ouagadougou is based on industry and commerce. Some industrial facilities have relocated from Bobo-Dioulasso to Ouagadougou, which has made the city an important industrial centre of Burkina Faso. The industrial areas of Kossodo and Gounghin, Ouagadougou, Gounghin are home to several processing plants and factories. The industry of Ouagadougou is sector that fuels urban growth, as people move to the city from the countryside to find employment in industry. The Copromof workshop in Ouagadougou sews cotton lingerie for the French label "Atelier Augusti." Ouagadougou is an important commercial centre. It is a centre where goods are collected and directed to rural areas. With a large consumer base, large amounts of energy sources, raw materials for buildings, agricultural products and livestock products are imported to the city. The economy is dominated by the informal sector, which is characterized by petty commodity production, and workers not necessarily having salaries. Traditional, informal trade is widespread and concentrated around markets and major roads, as well as in outlets in neighborhoods. There are also instances of modern economic practices with workplaces having qualified, stable labor forces, or more traditional forms of business such as family businesses. Commerçants ambulants avec portes tout.jpg Vendeur à la sauvette avec porte tout 1.jpg Commerçante ambulante dans les rues de Ouagadougou.jpg Vendeur à la sauvette à Ouagadougou.jpg Vendeur à la sauvette à Ouagadougou3.jpg The tertiary sector is also an important part of the economy. This comprises communications, banking, transport, bars, restaurants, hotels, as well as administrative jobs.


Twin towns – sister cities

Ouagadougou is Sister city, twinned with: * Bordeaux, France * Briton Ferry, Wales, United Kingdom * Grenoble, France * Kumasi, Ghana * Kuwait City, Kuwait * Leuze-en-Hainaut, Belgium * Lyon, France * Taipei, Taiwan * Zhengzhou, China


Parks

The Bangr-Weoogo urban park (area: ), before colonialism, belonged to the Mosse chiefs. Considering it a sacred forest, many went there for traditional initiations or for refuge. The French colonists, disregarding its local significance and history, established it as a park in the 1930s. In 1985, renovations were done in the park. In January 2001, the park was renamed "Parc Urbain Bangr-Weoogo", meaning "the urban park of the forest of knowledge". Another notable park in Ouagadougou is the "L'Unité Pédagogique", which shelters animals in a semi-free state. This botanic garden/biosphere system stretches over and also serves as a museum for the country's history. "Jardin de l'amitié Ouaga-Loudun" (Garden of Ouaga-Loudun Friendship), with a green space that was renovated in 1996, is a symbol of the twin-city relationship between Ouagadougou and Loudun in France. It is situated in the centre of the city, near the "Nation Unies' crossroads".


Culture

There are a number of cultural and art venues, such as the Maison du Peuple and Salle des Banquets, in addition to performances of many genres of music, including traditional folk music, modern music, and Hip hop music, rap. * National Museum of Music: exhibits all the musical instruments of Burkina Faso. * Musée de Manega: also exhibits musical instruments of Burkina Faso, Mossi rifles and other cultural items. Located northwest of the city. * "Naba Koom": a statue depicting a woman handling a calabash to pour water. The high statue faces the railway station, welcoming travellers into Ouaga. The place bears the name of an important chief in Burkina Faso's history. * "Laongo": east of the city, features enormous granite slabs that were designed by various sculptors. The exhibit displays works of art from five continents. * "La Place du Grand Lyon": a monument that reflects the relationship between Burkina Faso's capital and Lyon in France. It is located near the French cultural centre George Melies and features an imposing lion. A zoo called "Parc Animalier de Ziniaré": located east of the city in the hometown of the president.


Art and crafts

Several international festivals and activities are organized within the municipality, such as FESPACO (Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou), which is Africa's largest festival of this type, SIAO (International Art and Craft Fair), FESPAM (Pan-African Music Festival), FITMO (International Theatre and Marionnette Festival) and FESTIVO.La Girafe (2004). Ouaga-ca-bouge. Retrieved 19 March 2006 fro
Ouagadougou au Burkina Faso


Places of worship

Among the places of worship, they are predominantly Islam, Muslim mosques. J. Gordon Melton, Martin Baumann, ‘'Religions of the World: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Beliefs and Practices'’, ABC-CLIO, USA, 2010, p. 455 There are also Christianity, Christian churches and temples : Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Ouagadougou (Catholic Church), Association of Reformed Evangelical Church of Burkina Faso (World Communion of Reformed Churches), Assemblies of God, Deeper Life Bible Church, International Evangelism Center).


See also

*List of cities in Burkina Faso


Notes


References


Bibliography


External links


Official website of the government of Ouagadougou




{{Authority control Ouagadougou, Capitals in Africa French West Africa Populated places in the Centre Region (Burkina Faso)