26, January 2018
The Government’s decision to intensify its military campaign against members of the pro-independent movement in Southern Cameroon is creating more population movement towards Nigeria in search of international protection. Civilians have allegedly being killed by security forces while the government has accused suspected separatists of being responsible for the death of more than 10 security personnel since the crisis intensified following the unilateral declaration of independence on October 1, 2017.
More Cameroonians are arriving in Cross River, Taraba and Benue states in Nigeria with the main receiving communities recorded as Amana, Akamkpa, Agbokim, Ikom/Ajassor and Boki (Cross Riverstate) and Abande (Benue state). Due to the closure of official border entry points in those states, the asylum seekers continue to use informal crossing points. As a result, the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) says monitoring the arrivals and recording them remain a challenge. Those arriving are coming from Akwaya, Otu, Eyumojock, Nsan, Dadi & Bodam in Cameroon’s South-West Anglophone region. There are several accounts by asylum seekers as reasons for their flight including fear of generalised persecution because they are Anglophone Cameroonians, and heavy military and police deployments by government to prevent infiltration by militants of the independent movement in the English-speaking Cameroon regions.