A modern plank house in the New Layout neighbourhood of Kumba, South West Region of Cameroon has been reduced to ashes.
Fire sparked-off in the early hours of Thursday, August 30, 2018, following heightened gunfire. The authors of the arson are yet to be unknown.
House in Flames
A resident of the area confirmed that the fire broke on the building around 4:13 am. Inhabitants of the vicinity disclosed that from 3:30 am, deafening gunshots echoed around the neighbourhood.
At least two gun shots echoed from the same area a few minutes to noon same day.
A resident of the area said “I got up about a few minutes to 4:00am when my dog started barking unendingly. I peeped through the window. Then I saw human beings on foot going down the streets. Not long after, the gun shots were heard. When it dawned, I could only connect the movements when neighbours told me a house was burnt at night,” our source recounted.
Another resident of the area said the people he saw under night cover wore dresses similar to that of the military.
The respondent said she could not look further as she crept on her floor back into the house for fear of stray bullets.
Other people living in the area stated that the flames were seen few minutes after 4:00am.They said the gun shots only subsided after fire started ravaging the building.
Investigations, which The National Times conducted, reveal that some unidentified men had elected residence in the building. The house is near a swampy area next to a forest. The population of the New Layout neighbourhood, especially youngsters are known to have escaped towards the direction each time pressure mounts within the current Crisis.
Security elements are suspected to have set the house ablaze to put a stop to any possible grouping of separatists’ fighters around the metropolis of Kumba.
The owner of the plank house was yet to park into the building. It had reached an advanced staged with builders carrying out finishing touches.
Thursday’s incident brings to two the number of houses that have gone up in flames in Kumba since the Anglophone Crisis started. On August 16, gunmen burnt the house of a Police Officer around the same area.
This was during a gun battle between security officers and gunmen on Apollinaire Street. It triggered fear across New Layout located hundreds of meters away from it.