CAMEROON:LAKE NYOS DISASTER 35YEARS TODAY,WILL NOT BE SECURE AREA UNTILL GAS IS COMPLETELY REMOVED!
The august 21 ,1981 lake Nyos disaster that killed about 1750 is now 35 year old.People who feel reassured gradually return to settle in Nyos village which hasThe disaster which was one of the greatest natural disasters of Cameroon, cause a scare in Nyos village and its environs including neighbouring Village Lwi which is located some 10km from the disaster area. It has taken a lot for courage for some people to gradually return to settle in the village through the degassing operation. The government and other partners including European union have engaged in securing and servicing projects around Lake Nyos to prevent another explosion. Their efforts involes the strengthening of the natural dam that impounds the lake, in order to eliminate the risks associated with its rupture.Alafnet can confirm that 4434 survivors most of them children,were identified and removed away from the disaster area .Under the under the leadership of the then parish priest Fr Tenhorn, of st. Joseph parish Wum, who was the first person to visit the disaster Nyos immediately after deadly disaster.The survivors received first aid and invaluable support of the Catholic missionaries in Wum. It is thanks to these God-fearing hearts (missionaries) that information quickly circulated in the country and abroad. Condolences massages were received from all over the world.
Under UNESCO supervision, an international scientific conference was held in Yaounde from 16 to 21 March 1987 to highlight the disaster. National Committee of Reception and Emergency Management built houses to accommodate some 1870 survivors in nine sites viz; Buabua, Ipalim, Yem Ngeh, Esu, Ukpwah Waindo, Kimbi I, II Kimbi, Kumfutu I, II Kumfutu. Dr. Felix Tchoua is reported to have noted in a speech at the conference in Yaounde that the explosion at Lake Nyos was from the saturation of water with carbon dioxide, and that there was “No field index evidence that it was a volcanic eruption. An external mechanical force would have disturbed the physical-chemical balance of the lake “, added Prof. Felix Tchoua. It is worth mentioning here that on the cause of the gas explosion, Gregory Tanyileke of the Institute of Geological and Mining Research gave a similar explanation in an interview with Rfi some 12 years ago. Gregory Tanyileke in that interview stressed “it is carbon dioxide which is the cause of the disaster, but we do not understand the mechanism that caused the explosion of the gas that is stored in the lake and that is precisely the problem. Though there other parameters such as earthquakes, landslides, and climate phenomena can trigger this type of phenomenon. Before the disaster, there was no scientific data on the lake; “according to the expert of the Institute of Geological and Mining Research:” We cannot talk about a secure area until the gas is completely removed from the lake. But what has been put in place as a security measure reassures us. For now if we continue the long-term degassing operations people can come back here “, said the geologist on Rfi.
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