The inhabitants of Kakou and Ouro Garga are particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. In these two localities in the north of Cameroon, extreme weather phenomena such as floods cause diseases such as cholera, typhoid and malaria to proliferate, particularly affecting children. In a study carried out in the run-up to the 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27), the African Center for Advocacy presents the daily lives of these two communities, located on the front line of the climate affected regions.
« The variation in rainfall, sometimes excessive or rare (depending on the year), causes flooding, which in turn leads to diseases such as cholera, typhoid, malaria, and diseases related to child nutrition, » says Marceline Ndeomie, a 41-year-old farmer living in the village of Ouro Garga, in northern Cameroon. Her testimony is one of a series contained in a report released on the 5th of August 2022 by the non-governmental organisation (NGO) African Center for Advocacy (ACA). The
Northern part of Cameroon is one of the hottest regions in the country, with an average maximum temperature of 35 degrees per day. The climate is very hot, with an annual average of 35 degrees, but there are few truly tropical and humid months. It is hot, to very hot all year round. This negatively affects the daily life of the local people, both economically and socially.
« Before, fishermen had a daily income of 30,000 to 50,000 CFA francs (about $47 to $78) per day, which allowed them to meet the basic needs of their families. But today, the drying up of the waterways and the invasion of aquatic weeds have made fish scarce. The fishermen earn barely 2 dollars a day. The children, especially the village girls, no longer go to school, » says Al Hadji Saliou, president of the fishermen’s association in Kakou, another village in the northern region of Cameroon.
ACA advocates for communities affected by climate change
Two months before the 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27), the ACA report on the vulnerability of the populations of northern Cameroon to the effects of climate change intends to move the lines. « COP26 failed to recognise the urgency of the climate crisis. As we head towards COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, new mechanisms need to be put in place to make loss and damage funding accessible to communities on the frontline of the climate crisis, such as those in Kakou and Ouro Garga, » says Younoussa Abbosouka, ACA’s programme officer.
The NGO lobbies to ensure that the needs and knowledge of communities vulnerable to climate change are taken into account in development policies and global conferences. Through this, the African Center for Advocacy helped to get loss and damage on the agenda at COP27.