Northern Cameroon

Geographical map of Cameroon

WHY USAID/OTI IS IN NORTHERN CAMEROON

Boko Haram and ISIS-West Africa (BH and ISIS-WA) continue to pose a threat to northern Cameroon and beyond. Northern Cameroon struggles with insecurity due to frequent BH and ISIS-WA attacks. A strong military response, along with improved relations with Nigeria, is producing significant gains against BH and ISIS-WA. Additional civilian initiatives to help communities withstand and counter violent extremist threats bolster this progress. In conjunction with USAID/OTI programming in Niger, Nigeria and Chad, the program links efforts across the political, social and economic spheres of the Lake Chad Basin.

USAID/OTI’S ROLE IN NORTHERN CAMEROON

USAID/OTI works with local community leaders and groups to help counter violent extremist threats in the Far North. Together with longer-term investments, USAID/OTI programming allows communities in northern Cameroon to return to normal. The program works in the Mayo-Sava, Mayo-Tsanaga, Diamare and Logone-et-Chari departments to:

  • Stabilize communities most affected by conflict; and
  • Support locally driven initiatives to increase community reintegration

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

  • Forced displacement due to conflict has created tensions within communities as host community households compete for resources with internally displaced persons (IDPs). Tensions and suspicions between different groups can create divisions that extremist groups can further exploit to destabilize villages. In response, USAID/OTI hosted a series of intra-community dialogue platforms to help facilitate peaceful conflict resolution and communication between IDPs and host communities. Through these platforms, all community members are able to come together to discuss problems and resolve grievances peacefully. 
  • Years of conflict and a lack of public services have left citizens of Maroua, capital of the Far North region, in the dark. Working with the city government, USAID/OTI installed solar lights throughout the city to improve citizens’ perceptions of security. Since the installation of the solar lights, a vibrant night market has re-emerged, and people feel safe to walk around their neighborhood at night. Increasing perceptions of security and the re-opening of local markets are key steps in helping communities in the Far North return to a sense of normalcy.

Last updated: August 02, 2018

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