At least five people have been killed, dozens more injured and scores of others rendered homeless following a devastating flood in the Cameroonian cities of Limbe and Douala.
A heavy and lengthy downpour on the ocean city of Limbe on Tuesday caused massive flooding, which triggered a landslide that killed four and injured many others, residents said.
The governor of the Southwest region, Mr Bernard Okalia Bilai, who was supervising rescue operations in Limbe, confirmed the casualties to the state broadcasters, the CRTV early Thursday.
He said the government was taking measures to ensure that victims were well taken care of as there were fears the numbers may rise.
A heavy duty machine was digging through the mud in search of other victims, but the rescue operations were further complicated by the continuous downpour.
Mr Bilai, who was accompanied to Limbe by the Director of Civil Protection, Ms Yap Mariatou, said the residents of the affected areas would be temporarily relocated.
A similar scenario was reported in the country’s economic capital, Douala on Wednesday. Douala-based Equinoxe TV footages showed dozens of people wading across streets in which water rose to the knees of a medium-sized adult.
It said that at least one person died and several others were rendered homeless. A bridge at the locality of Nyalla also collapsed, paralysing traffic between Douala and the state capital, Yaoundé.
Floods were a common occurrence in most African countries. Last month, about 20 people were killed by flooding in Cote d’Ivoire’s commercial capital Abidjan.
The floods and the human and material damage in Cameroon add to the tribulations of the government of President Paul Biya, already pressed by a separatist movement seeking the secession of the two English speaking Northwest and Southwest from the rest of the predominantly French speaking country.