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Cameroon's Far North region faces devastating floods

Since August, the Far North region has been experiencing floodings caused by heavy rainfalls, the overflowing of rivers and the breaching of dikes.   -  
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Cleared / AFP -

Cameroon

Impassible roads, flooded houses and schools and fields submerged following heavy rains, the scenery in Cameroon’s northern town of Yagoua is one of devastation.

Since August, the Far North region has been experiencing floodings caused by heavy rainfalls, the overflowing of rivers and the breaching of dikes.

The minister of Territorial Administration visited the disaster-stricken region Wednesday.

"This year's floods have been particularly devastating. The world's weather forecasters had already predicted that there would be a lot of flooding", Paul Atanga Nji said.

"But we had no idea how bad it would get. The waters have risen to more than one and a half metres, which is quite irregular, and it is said that the last time this department experienced such a tragedy was in 2012."

Ten years ago around 20.000 people were affected by the floods and 12 died.

If the floods have forced many to leave their homes to look for shelter, some remain in the flooded towns. Cameroon’s national broadcaster reported that around 43,000 people had been affected by the flooding.

"Many did not want to leave their homes, piroguier expalins. 

"That's why we transport people from house to house by pirogue and since our pirogue has no engine we only charge 50 CFA franc per person."

Soldiers have been summoned to provided assistance. Suvivors of the floods received aid including food and sleeping kits during the ministerial visit. However, life remains extremely difficult even for those evacuated and housed in temporary accomations.

"It's not easy for us mums", Aisatou Toukdata laments. 

"There are normally more of us. We have to strengthen the dam to avoid this kind of problem. At the moment we are really left to our own devices", the flood victims says.

According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the humanitarian response in the Cameroonian far north REGION takes place in a complex emergency context combining population displacements due to insecurity, the presence refugees from neighboring countries as well as vulnerabilities linked to food insecurity.

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