COMMUNES ET VILLES UNIES DU CAMEROUN :: UNITED COUNCILS AND CITIES OF CAMEROON

BUREAU NATIONAL :: National Office

BAMUSSO

 

Mayor Mme ETONGO Grace MBENG 

  

Location of the council

Bamusso is the head quarters of the Bamusso Sub division. Bamusso town is located some 25km from Mbonge. The Bamusso Council has a total surface area of 885km2 with an estimated population of 95,674 inhabitants living in 27 villages. It is located between latitude 4033’N and longitude 9001’E with an altitude of about 80m in the mainland area above sea level and -5m in the maritime area which is below sea level.

The municipality has geographical boundaries with the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the North, to the South and West by Mbonge Sub-division and to the East Idenau Council. The average temperature range is about 300C and mean monthly rainfall of about 2500mm to 5000mm.

Description of the biophysical environment

The Bamusso municipality is being sub divided into two zones i.e. the maritime and the mainland area with two distinct biophysical environments. The maritime area which comprises of about 11 villages is surrounded by an evergreen mangrove ecosystem forest with high variety of biodiversity i.e. birds and animal species. Accessibility to villages in the area is through the creeks or by high sea like in the case of the Island of Bamusso and the peninsular of Bekumu. Three quarter of the surface area is below sea level with an altitude of about -1m to -5m. The area is highly risky during the raining season due to the swampy nature of the area.

The mainland area is covered by an ever green forest vegetation and a savannah vegetation with some of the villages located within the creek such as Dikome-Bekiri, Boa and Bekaraka also have spatial distribution of the mangrove ecosystem. The savannah vegetation is found within the villages of Ekombe Liongo and Ekombe Waterfall. The Mokoko forest reserve stretches within the boundaries Illoani which is a fast developing to an urban area. Generally being found on the leeway side of the Mount Cameroon, the topography is level land/ plain. This greatly account for the reason for the location of the Cameroon Development Cooperation (CDC) in the Main land area of Illoani and the Boa plain.

Climate

The Bamusso council area has the equatorial type of climate which is characterised by two distinct seasons; the rainy and the dry seasons. The dry season runs from October to March and is characterised by high temperatures of about 32-350C.

The rainy season begins from March and ends in October with its peak periods in July and August with an average rainfall of about 5000mm, relative humidity: 100% Wind: 2 mph and average temperature range of about 25.5-270C.

The dry season is characterized by dry winds that blow across the Sahara desert from a North East to a South Westerly direction. During this period, daily temperatures are high with a slight drop in the night. During the rainy season rains are heavy creating a favourable environment for rain-fed cultivation. The rains are occasionally associated with storms that are destructive to crops and property.

Soils

The Environmental Impact Assessment carried out by the Mount Cameroon Project (MCP) in 2000 shows that, the main type of soil found in this municipality is composed of Sandy and silty alluvium and is subject to seasonal flooding. The hills are a dissected plateau of old volcanic rocks with a few up-faulted sedimentary belts. These soil type is very good for plantation agriculture especially palms and cocoa.

Relief

The Bamusso municipality stands out as an area gentle relief with generally lowlands area. There are areas as low as -5m altitude around the maritime villages of Kesse, Bekumu and Ngatame which are below the sea level. The council has an average altitude of about 90m and is interrupted to the east by the Mount Cameroon. Close to the Atlantic Ocean are the mangrove swamps, several creeks, and sand-spits that stretch from the rocky coast lines of Fako to the Ndian River Basin. The relief of the council area is a flat surface which is gentle.

Hydrology

The main land area of the council is blessed with so many water courses including river streams, spring and borehole. The names of some of these rivers include river Meme which takes it rise from the Rumpi Hills drains the highlands of Madie, Dikome Balue and the coastal lowlands of Mbonge in the Meme Division before emptying into the Atlantic Ocean Combrany River which also empty itself to the Meme River. At the upper course of the Meme River navigation is hampered with two heavy Waterfalls in the Ekombe areas which the village Ekombe waterfall got its name. The maritime area of the council area is cover by sea and most of the villages found within these areas are islands.

History and People of the council (origin of the people, population, ethnic

groups, religions, main economic activities)

Ethnic Groups and inter-ethnic relations

Three different linguistic or ethnic groups live together in the council area: Oroko, Balondo and the Bakolle. There are also immigrants who have migrated to settle in these areas which include; Nigerians, Mosgoons, Ghanians, Bakweries and the North Westerners who engage in agriculture, fishing and other income generating activities including the civil service. The Oroko, ethnic groups are concentrated in the main land area while the maritime areas are mostly populated with the Nigerians, Ghanians and the Mosgoons who are involved in fishing activities. Religion

Christianity is the predominant religion in Bamusso Municipality, constituting about 85% of the population. The Christians are made up of different denominations which are Catholics, Presbyterians Apostolic and Full Gospel. There are also traditionalists who adhere to ‘juju’ and shrine worship and Muslims, who constitutes about 1% of the population.

Catholics, Presbyterians and Apostolics have been involved not only in the evangelization of the Sub division for a long time but also in setting the pace for educational and health development. These religious bodies currently provide educational, health and other social services to the population. Proximity of the council to the Federal Republic of Nigeria has facilitated the influx of several New Christian Religious Movements.

Mobility of the population

The Bamusso council is endowed with the kind of resources whose harnessing is at the reach of the average person – fertile soil. Consequently, the council has been extremely vulnerable to migration within the country and even from without, especially Nigeria. Migrations within the Sub-division reveal three main characteristics: migrations from rural to urban areas; migrations from urban to rural areas; and migrations from rural areas to other rural areas. The migrations in the council area reveal strong points such as lack of traditional and structural constraints/or barriers to the free movement of manpower and openness to new opportunities such as the CDC and KEC. The Bamusso farmers among others are strongly motivated by economic considerations and although content to remain in their villages, are willing to migrate to other localities in search of better opportunities and higher incomes.

The presence of CDC in the council has attracted a considerable proportion of migrant farmers from other areas of the South West especially from Fako division (Munyenge, Ikata, etc.) as well as from areas outside the Region. Many indigenes from the rural areas of Fako Division and North West attracted to this area in search of a job opportunity.

In Bamusso Sub Division, rural agglomerations along the Monge-Ekombe Waterfall and Mbonge–Mbongo roads receive new migrant farmers involved in the cultivation of cocoa, oil palms, and food crops such as plantains and cocoyam, which have become important sources of income.

Assets, potentials and constraints of the Municipality

The Bamusso municipality has significant biophysical features both in the maritime and mainland area. If exploited can harnnest development in the Municipality.