Cameroon – Eseka Tragedy: Paul Biya orders the release of 1 billion FCFA for the victims

Written by Deckson N.

The results of the investigation, made public after seven months of waiting, clearly establish the responsibility of Cameroon Railways (Camrail), subsidiary of Bolloré, concessionaire of the railway network of Cameroon since April 1, 1999.

The President of the Republic has decided to release the sum of one billion CFA francs by way of additional assistance to be paid to the victims of the train accident or their beneficiaries, it was learned on Tuesday, Through a communiqué from the Secretary-General of the Republic of Cameroon, Ferdinand Ngoh Ngoh.

The statement follows on Tuesday the results of the investigation ordered by the Head of State following the derailment of train 152 on 21 October 2016, not far from the Eséka station. The derailment caused 79 deaths and almost 600 injured according to the authorities.

The President of the Republic took note of the measures taken and envisaged by Camrail to compensate the families of the deceased and to provide financial assistance to the wounded. He advocates the finalization of this process as soon as possible, “the statement said.

Indeed, a few days after the accident, the Camrail had undertaken to remit the sum of 1.5 million CFA francs to each family having lost a member in the drama. “This envelope is not compensation for damages, but a burden of funeral expenses for passengers who lost their lives in this terrible accident,” the company said.

Camrail will ensure that the compensation is as fast as possible, personalized and equal to the damage suffered,” promised the railway company. Since then, the families of the victims of the Eseka derailment have no longer heard of the compensation.

This announcement comes at a time when a lawsuit against Camrail was opened at the Court of Garnde Instance of Douala-Bonanjo. The victims demand the restitution of the bodies of their deceased relatives. This trial, delivered at the third hearing on Monday, was postponed until May 26, 2017.

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Deckson N.

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