FJA 2019 / Shortlist

Category: Outstanding Investigative Reporting

Solomon Tembang Mforgham (Cameroon)

“How illegal Chinese mining destroys livelihoods, fuels conflicts in Cameroon”

Nagbayanga Valentin, a widow in her late thirties, sits on the earth floor of her thatched two-roomed house she shares with her four young children in Haya Haya, a mining encampment with about 2,000 inhabitants in Longa Mali village of Betare Oya sub division, some 200 kilometres from Bertoua, headquarters of Cameroon’s East region.

Dirty pots, pans and other old household paraphernalia are strewn all over the tiny house. Outside, the laughter and chatter of her children and those of other neighbours is audible enough as they play a local game, virtually ignorant of the weighty problems their mother, and the community, are going through.

Poverty is discernible in the community whose inhabitants live in thatch houses, but just metres away, Chinese machines are rumbling as they mine away millions of francs CFA in gold. Read more

The Guardian Post, Journal du Cameroun and Tuck magazine