20 November 2011

Walid, a Paduan among the dispersed of Sidi Mansour

Walid Bouani
Walid Bouan was somewhat Italian. He had lived in Padua for nine years. From 2001 to 2010. And from Italy he was expelled a year ago. Once back in the family home in Hay Noor, a suburb of Tunis, he had unsuccessfully sought a new job. And as soon as he saw how easy it was for young men to cross the sea immediately after the revolution, he decided to do the same. When their boat sailed from the coast of Sidi Mansour (Sfax) to Lampedusa, it was the evening of March 14, 2011. On the old fishing boat a name was written, ‘Zuhair’. And on board 48 people were travelling. The last telephone communication with relatives on the ground in Tunis was at 9.21 pm of that evening. In that call Walid Bouani, born in 1981, told his brother that the sea was calm. Since then nobody has had news of him. Not even the two brothers who were waiting for him at Padua where they’ve been living for years and where everything was ready for him to come over.

translated by Camilla Gamba