" A soldier recently opened fire and wounded two people at Société Camerounaise des Banques (SCB). Policemen are currently on the spot to secure the perimeter," a Facebook post shared over 300 times since its publication indicates.
"What we know so far is that he asked for a XAF4,000,000 loan. The bank agreed to that loan, but as he already had outstanding loans, the bank deduced the outstanding amount from the new loan and handed him XAF800,000. This was not to the liking of the sergeant who pulled out his gun and shot at the windows. According to our sources, he is a repeat offender," the post continues. The statement, as well as the images of the vandalized branch, were quickly relayed by other Facebook posts but, the information is not accurate.
It was denied by the Ministry of Defense and SCB Cameroon itself. "On Saturday, January 30, 2021, SCB Cameroon’s Bertoua branch was vandalized by a soldier identified by his family and hierarchy as an unbalanced person. He used stones to break the windows and the ATM of the Bertoua branch," the bank said in a release.
Contacted by SBBC, the head of Mindef's communication division Captain Cyrille Serge Atonfack Guemo confirmed that the man is "an unbalanced soldier", but "there was no gunshot," he adds.
An "internal investigation has been opened to determine the circumstances of this unfortunate and unacceptable incident," the army spokesman added.
The said soldier was taken to a "safe place," according to the bank, which explained that only one person was injured in the incident, not two as reported on the web.
"The shards of broken windows caused minor scratches to a client who was immediately taken care of by the bank's management," said the document signed by Marie-Laure Ndoumbe, head of communications and quality at SCB Cameroon.
Patricia Ngo Ngouem