On Monday, July 24, the Minister of Housing and Urban Development (Minhdu), Célestine Ketcha Courtès (photo), invited mayors to set up awareness teams to prevent and manage floods, and landslides. "These teams will have to continue to raise awareness on the dangers of building in non-buildable areas, particularly low-lying areas, and hillsides," she indicated in a press release.
It will also be a question of "remobilizing neighborhood committees to clear drains to improve rainwater channeling and continuing awareness-raising campaigns to reduce the uncivil disposal of waste, whose poor management not only leads to the deterioration of road infrastructures but also exposes city dwellers to water-borne diseases," the release added.
Célestine Ketcha Courtès explains that the purpose of the awareness teams is "to prevent the unfortunate situations that have arisen in the past in some of the country's cities". These include the landslide in Gouache (West) on October 28, 2019, which killed around forty people, the floods in Douala (Littoral) in August 2020, which displaced over 5,000 people, and the recent deadly mudslides in Buea (South-West) in March 2023.
The Minhdu press release follows "warning messages issued by the National Meteorological Department concerning the risk of violent thunderstorms over the next few days in several regions of the country, more specifically in the North, the Northwest, the Southwest, the West, the Littoral and the Central regions,” we learn.
In its latest meteorological bulletin, the National Observatory on Climate Change (NOCC) warns of the risk of flooding and landslides in virtually all regions of the country, following the "heavy and abundant rains" forecast for the period from July 21 to 30.