A piece of sad and unfortunate news available to ghgossip.com has it that some gunmen have raided a private school in a town in Cameroon, opening fire on the students, eliminating at least six of them and injuring eight of them in a region where separatist insurgents operate, officials and parents said.
According to reports, the invaders arrived at the school premises on motorbikes and in civilian clothes during midday in the city of Kumba in the Southwest Region. This was the account given by witnesses and also parents leaving outside the school.
In the course of the attacks, some of the pupil injured themselves after they tried to jump from the second storey building of the school.
It was unclear if the attack was linked to a continuing struggle between the army and groups seeking to form a breakaway state called Ambazonia in the English-speaking west.
But it was a grim new low in a region that since 2017 has seen hundreds die and thousands displaced because of the conflict, with many children unable to attend school. “They found the children in the class and they opened fire on them,” city sub-prefect Ali Anougou told Reuters.
Isabel Dione ran into the school to search for her 12-year-old daughter when she heard about the shooting. She found her on the floor of a classroom, bleeding from the stomach. “She was helpless and she was shouting, ‘Mum, please help me’, and I told her ‘only your God can save you now’,” Dione told Reuters. The girl was taken to hospital where she is undergoing treatment for a gunshot wound.
The United Nations’ Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said eight children had died, some by machete, and that 12 were wounded.
Videos circulating on social media filmed by local journalists showed adults rushing from the school with children in their arms, surrounded by wailing onlookers. One photo verified by Reuters showed the inside of a classroom, where a pile of dried blood had pooled on the floor near some scattered flip-flops.
Ahhim Abanaw Obase who is the Local Education Officer confirmed that six of the pupil have been killed as well eight severely injured in an attempt to escape from the attackers.
However, Anglophone secessionists have imposed curfews and closed schools as part of their protest against President Paul Biya’s French-speaking government and its perceived marginalization of the English-speaking minority. Rights groups have documented abuses against civilians from both sides.
Last year, officials blamed separatists for kidnapping dozens of schoolchildren, which the separatists denied