News / Africa

Equatorial Guinea Expels Illegal Cameroonians

x
Hundreds of Cameroonians have been forcefully expelled from neighboring Equatorial Guinea for being in the country illegally.  They are complaining that their property was seized and valid transit documents are not being recognized. Part of this issue appears to be related to the refugees fleeing the violence in the Central African Republic (CAR).
 
The border town of Campo in southwestern Cameroon has seen hundreds of Cameroonians returning from Equatorial Guinea in recent weeks after they were forcefully expelled.
 
Eleven-year-old Lesslie Ndifor had joined his father in Bata in Equatorial Guinea and began school there. He told VOA armed men chased them from their home.
 
“They just came, started beating us and seized everything from us. As you can see, he [my father] is seriously wounded,” said Lesslie.
 
Lesslie's father, Ndifor Thomas, a motor mechanic, said he had acquired a passport of the Central African Economic and Monetary Community, CEMAC, and is surprised that it was not recognized in Equatorial Guinea.
 
Last year, CEMAC heads of state agreed to cancel visa requirements and to begin issuing CEMAC biometric passports in August in order to promote better regional economic integration between Cameroon, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, the Central African Republic, Gabon and Congo Brazzaville.
 
But Decodeh Marcel, a Cameroonian who was also deported from Equatorial Guinea, told VOA the new document was useless.
 
“How can we talk of regional integration under these circumstances? What if Cameroonians start sending away other nationals from their own territory? It is really terrible,” said Marcel.
 
Cameroonian officials confirm this is an ongoing problem.
 
Sillas Thomas Charlie is an administrator in Campo.  He said they often don’t have the facilities to handle the needs of those fleeing Equatorial Guinea.
 
He said hardly a week passes without scores of Cameroonians coming back from Equatorial Guinea without any possessions or money and they are dependent.  He said his local government needs more resources to care for these people who are often sick and hungry. 
 
This situation is sparking anger in Cameroon - where many locals are pressing for the government to retaliate by expelling many of the 10,000 Equatorial Guineans who work and study in Cameroon.
 
The governor of Cameroon’s South Region, Jules Marcellin Njaggah, told VOA that he understands the sentiment but he said officials are concentrating on fixing the problem with Equatorial Guinea. 
 
The deteriorating security situation in the Central Africa Republic is part of the issue.
 
The spiraling violence in December resulted in hundreds of thousands of displaced people - prompting Equatorial Guinea and Gabon to suspend the agreement to allow freer cross border movements.
 
Despite the set-back, the director of integration in CEMAC, Cameroonian-born Chantale Elombat said she was optimistic that the situation will be resolved in due course.
 
She said these setbacks are temporary and there is no reason why Central Africa cannot create a successful economic trade bloc.
  
Equatorial Guinea has the strongest economy in CEMAC, with 10 percent growth - prompting many Cameroonians and other Central Africans to seek better job opportunities there.

You May Like

Ukraine Purges Interior Ministry Leadership With Pro-Russian Ties

Interior Minister Avakov says 91 people 'in positions of leadership' have been fired, including 8 generals found to have links to past pro-Moscow governments More

US Airlines Point to Additional Problems of any Ebola Travel Ban

Airline officials note that even under travel ban, they may not be able to determine where passenger set out from, as there are no direct flights from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone More

Nigerian President to Seek Another Term

Goodluck Jonathan has faced intense criticism for failing to stop Boko Haram militants More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid