The army and national gendarmerie are closely monitoring the assaults and violence situation in the Far North, according to Defense Minister Joseph Beti Assomo. The government official announced this commitment on June 24, in response to the concerns expressed by Mayo Danay MP Célestin Tabouli about the prevailing insecurity in this administrative unit, as well as in the Mayo Kani department in the Far North.
"400 young gendarmes have just been deployed to the Maroua and Kousseri gendarmerie corps, the Far North being the only region in the country to have 4 gendarmerie corps. The other regions have only one. This shows…” how important it is for the Ministry of Defence to address the insecurity problem in the Far North, Minister Beti Assomo explained.
According to the official, the government has also recently deployed a backup force of 200 gendarmes from the mobile gendarmerie unit to the Far North, to enable the “commander of gendarmerie region N°4 to carry out ad hoc operations in certain administrative units, depending on the level of security threats, particularly crime-related ones.”
The Far North continues to face serious crime and incursions by the Boko Haram sect. In the commune of Waza, home to the eponymous national park, local sources report an upsurge in Boko Haram attacks. This has prompted the region's military command to deploy additional troops.
While Mindef welcomes the deployment of additional gendarmes to the region, it is cautious. "Obviously, a new force of 400 young people is not enough to make up for the shortfall in all the brigades. Let's not delude ourselves. We just want to make sure that the movement we've started will continue," he declared.
During his address, he also recalled the government’s efforts to strengthen the Defense and Security Forces. "We are in the third year of a special 5-year program prescribed by the President of the Republic to reinforce the army and gendarmerie, with just over 5,000 men for the army and just over 3,500 men for the gendarmerie. That's around 8,000 a year for five years. This year, we are in the third phase of this program, which will be completed in two years," he explained.