Discreet by nature, Mamounata Velegda is constantly solicitated and always traveling. « My creed, to have faith in what I undertake, » she says And yet, nothing predestined the woman in her sixties, mother of four, to a promising career as a business leader. When she started her business in 1980, as a seller of patties on the street, her capital is only a few hundred CFA francs. « I started with 300 FCFA (0.47 euros), before expanding my business to tubers and fruits. Then, when I had more money, I sold corn flour that I bought in neighboring Ghana. » I then sold corn, sorghum and finally shea nuts, product that constitutes the bulk of its commercial activity.
This is Mamounata Velegda’s path. Born in a peasant family of central-east Burkina Faso, she was from an early age, marked by an injustice related to her status as a woman. « I was nine when the first school in my village opened. We were in 1967. While I wanted so much to get enrolled, my father preferred to register my brother. I had to stay home for housework, » she recalls bitterly.