YAOUNDE, Cameroon (AP) — Cameroon on Monday deployed rescue workers and its military to search the wreckage of houses hit by a landslide that killed at least 13 people overnight in the western village of Bamoungoum, near the regional capital Bafoussam.
The landslide hit after torrential downpours flooded the area.
Twenty houses were destroyed and 9 bodies have been taken to the regional hospital, said the governor of Cameroon’s west region, Awa Fonka Augustine. Four more bodies will follow, he said.
“We also have at least a dozen people with severe wounds,” said Augustine. “The death toll may be higher because the incident occurred in the night and you know that there are many children in this neighborhood who were sleeping at the time.”
It is also feared that at least two pregnant women were killed.
Pierre Kemvhe, 51, said his pregnant wife was still missing.
“My wife was expecting a baby and was very tired when she went to sleep while I was still in my shop last night,” he said. “I have not seen her.”
Cameroon minister of decentralization George Elanga Obam handed out money to survivors and encouraged the rescue workers.
“President Paul Biya asked me to give urgent financial assistance to those who have lost all of their belongings and are hungry without food and water. We shall examine their needs and see what to do as early as possible.”
It is estimated that at least 120 people live in the neighborhood that was swept by the floods and landslide.