Monday, July 18, 2016

Cameroon: Molyko fire disaster reignites calls for fire brigade in Buea

Fire consuming shops in Molyko-Buea
                                By Zakah Mbako Josepher*
A fire outbreak near Malingo Street in the evening of Saturday July 16 in the neighborhood of Molyko, in Buea, capital of the Southwest Region of Cameroon that reduced seven shops worth millions of FCFA to aches, has reignited calls for the putting in place of a fire brigade in the town, which has a population of over 200,000 residents and hosts the first Anglo-Saxon University in the country.
   In recent years fire disasters have caused the loss of property worth hundreds of millions of FCFA and left several families homeless and or jobless; but the Cameroon government is yet to consider the putting in place of a fire rescue service in Buea, former capital of German kamerun and the British Southern Cameroons, as a priority project.
   As July 16 wild fire, said to have originated from a wooden building, consumed the shops whose contents included electronic gadgets, dresses and shoes, their owners struggled helplessly to extinguish the fire using unconventional methods.
As members of population that had gathered in sympathy helped in bringing the fire under control, a few looters took advantage of the incident.
Surprisingly, the fire disaster occurred directly opposite the Molyko Police Station.
   One Molyko resident who witnessed the fire disaster strongly blamed the Biya regime for not establishing a fire rescue unit in an important town as Buea.He noted that the absence of a fire brigade in Buea is a clear sign of Government abandoning people it is supposed to protect.
  “Why is Buea the only regional headquarters reportedly without a fire brigade? What are the elite of the town doing to persuade the Government see need for such an important service here?” one University of Buea  student questioned at the scene of the disaster.
  Other residents were of the opinion that had Buea fire rescue units, the extent of damage and suffering inflicted on victims by fire disasters in recent years would have significantly reduced.
    An investigation is said to have started to establish the real cause of the fire and evaluate property lost to it.
  But it is not known whether Government will compensate the victims somehow.
*Zakah Mbako Josepher is University of Buea Journalism Student on internship

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The need for a fire brigarde is really alarming in molyko here. It is of common knowledge here that the population in molyko is largely dominated by students that generally return to their family houses during holidays or short breaks. Supposing such an event takes place during that time. The population left over might not be able to deal with the situation, thus the need for a mobile fire brigarde able to intervene in time of need.