It was an opportunity to talk about the measures taken by the Cameroonian government to combat this tendency to whiten the skin with lightening cosmetic products.
André Mama Fouda, the Minister of Public Health, was facing the MPs on 30 June. The member of the Government was to answer the questions of the MPs. They called on him about bleaching, a phenomenon that is spreading in a worrying way in Cameroon.
The Minister of Public Health stated that
“the importation and use of products containing hydroquinone (substance promoting the depigmentation of the skin) are prohibited. Those containing corticoids intended for dermatological use are tolerated, provided that their importation is subject to the prior authorization of the Ministry of Public Health “.
However, the means used by the State to implement these measures are reduced. As a result, they limit themselves to raising awareness, he said.
Skin stripping is an operation that consists in making it clear by the use of many chemicals, mainly cosmetic products. In large cities and even in the hinterland, the proliferation of cosmetic shops has grown significantly.
The reason being that promoters as well as many traders have realized that this activity is very lucrative. Therefore, perfumeries as well as beauty institutes are ubiquitous. In store shelves, toilet oils, scrubs and other lotions containing chemicals capable of depigmenting the skin and causing several cases of cancers abound.
However, users should be compelled to comply with these prohibitions. But, above all, the precondition would be to banish the circulation of cosmetic products that promote bleaching of the skin. Again, the Ministry of Public Health is powerless against the porosity of borders and the weakness of the control systems in Cameroon.