News / Africa

Cameroon Concerned About Boko Haram Violence

Map of Cameroon
Map of Cameroon
Kidnappings, an influx of refugees and an increase fighting and criminal acts in Cameroon's border communities have raised concerns about Nigeria's Boko Haram insurgency.

Cameroonians in northern communities that share a boundary with Nigeria's Borno state, the base of the Boko Haram militant group, are worried the violent group has extended its reach into Cameroon.

Nurse Mary Nana, 31, told VOA she was preparing to leave the border locality of Fotokol after four Cameroonians were killed and some 3,000 Nigerians crossed over to her area following last week's attack on a market by suspected Boko Haram members. 

"I am very much aware of the fact that they [Boko Haram] are here so the insecurity is just too much," she said. "I am very very afraid.  I think if there is a possibility of leaving even this day as I am talking [I would be happy]. The insecurity is just too much."

Secondary school teacher John Che says insecurity has increased in North Cameroon where he works because of the belief that Boko Haram insurgents are in the area.

 "The security situation of this region is questionable," Che said. "We don't know who is who because the Boko Haram guys are at our door steps."

Fonka Awah Augustine, the governor of Far North Cameroon, says the cause of the public's anxiety is apparent.

"Our problems come from our neighbors," he noted. " Each time the Nigerian army attacks, Boko Haram becomes destabilized and they are looking for a safe ground to settle, and each time Boko Haram equally attacks either the army or a particular community they cause the flow of the population in their thousands into our region. [far north Cameroon]."

Augustine says he banned movements from dusk to dawn on motorcycles, which are a widely used means of transportation in North Cameroon,  because Boko Haram members have been using them to cause havoc.

 "All the kidnappings and the attacks were done with the complicity of motorcycles," he said. "So we feel that motorcycles are really becoming a source of trouble and they are being used as an instrument to cause disorder and trouble in this region."

Saibou Issa, a lecturer at the University of Maroua, told VOA that concerns over public safety have stagnated economic activity between Cameroon and Nigeria.

"There are people who are killed, there is widespread suspicion, there is fear, there is more and more economic starvation, there is no more economic interaction between Nigeria and Cameroon through Maiduguri, Bama and so on and so forth," Issa said.

Rene Emmanuel Sadi, Cameroon's Minister of Territorial Administration, has been visiting border localities to advice the people on what to do in the face of the threats.  He said collaboration with the Cameroonian military is vital.

"This Boko Haram thing is very serious and so I came to sensitize, to educate everybody and to tell them that we really need their contribution," he explained. "They should really get involved in this search, in this battle in this combat. It is then that we will succeed in overcoming the challenge before us, that is Boko Haram."

Cameroon is also suffering as a result of the conflict in the Central Africa Republic.  Seleka rebels have attacked the east of the country nine times since the conflict started.

They reportedly killed Cameroonian soldiers and civilians in all of the attacks.  Last week, the Cameroonian government announced it had freed 18 cattle ranchers kidnapped by Seleka rebels.

Cameroon is also under threat from armed groups said to come into the country from Sudan through Chad to attack national parks.  Three hundred elephants have been reported slaughtered and their tusks sold in Asian countries.

Cameroon has been calling on all its citizens to cooperate with the military and administrative authorities by reporting all suspected people and strangers in their regions.

You May Like

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike in Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Analysis: Occupy Central Not Exactly Hong Kong’s Tiananmen

VOA's former Hong Kong, Beijing correspondent compares and contrasts 1989 Tiananmen Square protest with what is now happening in Hong Kong More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid