Cameroonians have continued to bury their loved ones after a devastating suicide bombing on Wednesday left at least 19 people dead and dozens injured in the country’s far north. The initial death toll was nine, but quickly climbed to 14 before jumping to 19.
More than 30 people were also injured when a Boko Haram suicide bomber hit the once quiet Cameroonian town of Waza, not very far from the border with Nigeria, where Abubakar Shekau’s men are based and from where they launch deadly and virtually daily attacks on Nigeria and Cameroon.
L’Oeil du Sahel newspaper, which first reported the bomb attack on Wednesday evening, reported on Thursday that 19 people had died.
In Nigeria, at least 23 people, including four suicide bombers, died on Tuesday night, when a funeral came under attack in the state of Borno, northeastern Nigeria, where the insurgency began in 2009.
Attacks in Nigeria and Cameroon have escalated in recent months and it is now virtually a daily affair – the killings, the bombings, the gun attacks, the orgy of deaths.
This war in West Africa, which has killed more people than ISIS, is being overlooked by the international media. A small bombing in London or Paris that kills two persons receives more coverage than a carnage in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger, four of the countries whose citizens remain on the run as bomb and gun attacks by ISIS partners in West Africa multiply.
The United States for instance has a meagre 5000 troops in the whole of Africa stationed far away in Djibouti, East Africa, thousands of kilometres away from West Africa where Boko Haram has been wreaking havoc for years.
In Cameroon, more than 2000 civilians, as well as hundreds of soldiers and policemen have been killed since 2014.
In Nigeria, over 25, 000 people have been massacred since 2009. Millions of people who have been displaced remain without homes till date, and thousands of people who had been kidnapped have not been seen till date, including at least 100 Chibok schoolgirls abducted in 2014.
President Muhammadu Buhari, who declared victory over Boko Haram in 2016, has been battling for his life in London and while uncertainty grows with whispers about a possible coup or power struggle, scant attention seems to be given to Boko Haram.
President Paul Biya of Cameroon, who has been in power for 35 years, has never visited the war zone since the hostilities reached his nation in 2014. With killings and attacks escalating, claims of a defeated Boko Haram seem to be totally false, at least for now.