Backbreaking quarry work only choice for Burkinabe teenager

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At an open-pit granite quarry in Burkina Faso's capital, workers' children play in the rubble while others toil alongside their parents after the coronavirus pandemic closed schools.
OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) -

Most of the site's 1,000 workers are adults, but a Reuters witness saw a dozen children of different ages chipping lumps of granite into smaller pieces or balancing rocks on their heads as they walked painstakingly out of the steep pit.

"It's not a game. If you work here, you hurt all over at night," said 18-year-old school pupil Elysee Yanogo, who was splitting granite slabs with a mallet.

He started working at the quarry with his mother after authorities ordered schools closed in March to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.

"We don't have information about when they are going to reopen, that's why I follow my mother to the quarry to help her," he said.

Yanogo can legally work at the site as he is over 16. But despite the law, some 42% of Burkinabe children…
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