The Cameroon crisis and its consequences for the rural population
Since 2016, the two English speaking regions of Cameroon have become the focus of a severe crisis. Violent conflicts between small rebel groups and the French speaking police and gendarmerie are about political powers, independence, oil resources and the increasing isolation of English speaking minorities in the country.
The population in the affected regions North and North-West suffer from harsh interventions by the authorities, e.g. a curfew after 7 pm or frequent traffic controls under general suspicion. In the more urban areas such as Bamenda or Kumbo, riots take place on a regular basis and schools are closed down. People live in fear, children cannot go to school.
However, the urban centres have the basic infrastructure to still receive an adequate supply of goods whereas the rural population is cut off from basic supplies and the water situation has thus deteriorated in the past years. Villages of 2,000 people have no running water. Instead, they catch rain water or collect it from doubtful sources for drinking, cooking or washing. The authorities are so busy with handling the current war situation that the rural population’s struggles are being completely neglected.
But there is hope since water is in the ground. The hilly landscape keeps water under its surface in many places. Of course, this water can only be made available to the locals by financing the drilling and well construction. That is why we have already funded and supervised a big water infrastructure project in the village of Mbah. We drilled to a depth of 65 metres and layed pipes to central spots in the village: the market and the health centre. These are now provided with running water from taps. An important step for the village, but far from being enough.
We want to bring clean drinking water to more villages in the region around Kumbo. Let us help the population in this area of the world to go back to a more normal life. Despite the crisis.