Tears and Confusion
Thursday morning saw a dark cloud of tragedy hang over the Regional Hospital of Kumba, Cameroon as many gathered to mourn seven students shot in cold blood by armed men at the College St Mother Francisca a week ago.
This funeral comes only 24 hours after an attack on a school in Limbe that saw both students and teachers stripped naked, molested and have their classrooms set on fire.
Ernestine Atchobi, a resident of Kumba, is distraught and wants answers, "I'm very unhappy to see these bodies lying in these coffins, even looking at them is beyond me, because when these children came back from their lunch break, they always ran to come and see me at the market in my sales stall, but when I see them lying like this, I don't even know what God will do with them, because we don't know who did this, only God knows."
Investigation and Pending Justice
Amid heavy police surveillance, the ceremony was presided over by Cameroonian Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute under the instructions of President Paul Biya — as sorrowful family members, friends and others from the community came to pay their respects and say goodbye to their now deceased loved ones.
Cameroonian authorities have since promised to find the perpetrators behind the attack in order to bring them to justice to the fullest extent of the law.
The procession moved towards the Festival Square where the flag-clad coffins holding the seven bodies will be laid down to rest in peace.
"The land of Kumba will soon close in on the bodies of the seven children lying behind me, it's a gloomy atmosphere, an atmosphere of mourning, a week after these children were coldly murdered by armed men who burst into their school. You can imagine the atmosphere at the moment, it's gloomy, dull, for parents, residents who are still trying to understand what really happened that day. Reporting from Kumba for Africanews, I'm Joel Honoré Kouam."