Thursday, January 9, 2014

Equatorial Guinea closes its borders with Cameroon and Gabon

(Business in Cameroon) - The Cameroonian government’s daily publication, Cameroon Tribune, has just announced that, under the instructions of the Equato-Guinean authorities, the border between Cameroon and this neighbouring country in the locality of Kyé-Osi, in the South, will be closed as of December 31, 2013 at midnight. 

According to Cameroon Tribune, whose source is allegedly a Cameroonian administrative authority occupying functions at the Cameroon-Gabon border as well as other reliable sources, the same decision was also taken for the border between Gabon and Equatorial Guinea. 

Sources in Kyé-Osi, where the local population’s livelihood is based largely on trade with Equatorial Guinea and Gabon, have confirmed the claim, specifying that this border closure has led to cross-border contraband trading carried out with the help of some Equato-Guineans. 

The Malabo decision came about at the very moment on January 1, 2014 when the biometric passport for the CEMAC zone came into effect. This document was supposed to enable freedom of movement for people and goods in this geographic zone which comprises Chad, Gabon, the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, the Central African Republic and Cameroon. 

The decision to open the borders to CEMAC members was taken in June 2013 at a summit held in Libreville, Gabon, but, in November 2013, the Obiang Nguéma Mbasogo (photo) administration made a 180° turn, alleging that the Equato-Guinean population would fear “massive immigration” from less fortunate areas of the CEMAC zone.

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