Eseka train accident: commemorative monument soon to be erected

Eseka train accident: commemorative monument soon to be erected

Four samples of the monument have been presented to the Head of State for selection one year after he ordered the construction of a monument

The four different samples are designed to honour the lost souls and wipe off the sad memories from both the inhabitants of the town of Eseka and family members of those who lost their loved ones in the tragedy. They were designed by young Cameroonian artists with the vision of developing the accident zone by transforming it into a sight-seeing and relaxation center for tourist from within and without the country.

The selection was done by a commission set up by the minister of arts and culture, Professor Narcisse Mouelle Kombi who was responding to instructions from prime minister and head of government, Philemon Yang.

Some 60 samples were received by the commission and after examination on the originality of the projects; only four were selected and has been forwarded to the Head of state Paul Biya, for final selection.

Results of the commission were presented to the public by the minister of Arts and Culture, Professor Narcisse Mouelle Kombi during a ceremony at the National Museum on Friday May 04, 2018 in the presence of Social Affairs minister, Pauline Irene Nguene, Women’s Empowerment and the Family Affairs Minister, Abena Ondoa nee Obama Marie Therese and the minister of Justice and Keeper of the Seal, Laurent Esso.

The best project came from Ndzinga Nga Fridelin, who received a cash price of two million FCFA. His sample represents a true identity of living together in the country and according to him his inspiration came from God almighty. “I was inspired by God who sent me a vision to transmit through this monument, it represents living together between ‘Francophones’ and ‘Anglophones’ as a family and will provide a forum in Eseka where the population, tourists and family members of the victims can exchange together in peace and love”

Tiomela Gabin Joachim came second and was handed a cash prize of one million FCFA, while Onono Ngwa Rumerique and Etolo Eya Emmanuel came third and fourth taking home 700.000 FCFA and 500.000 FCFA respectively.

According to the minister of Arts and Culture, over 2000 hectares of land around the Eseka train station have been carved out for the construction of the ‘Monument’ and the construction will start immediately President Paul Biya chooses the final structure to be erected in Eseka.

The accident

It was on the 21 of October that the Camrail train 152 derailed some few meters away from the Eseka train station from Yaoundé killing close to ninety (90) passengers and injuring many.

Days after the accident on the 25th of the same month, the Head of State Paul Biya ordered inquiries and set up a commission headed by Prime Minister Philemon Yang.

Results of the investigation disclosed that Camrail was solely responsible for the accident for over speeding since they were moving at 96km/h instead of 40km/h on the Yaoundé Douala railway line. Overloading was another fault attributed to the accident coupled with the fact that some of the passenger coaches had brakes issues.

The Secretary General at the Presidency of the Republic, Ferdinand Ngoh Ngoh who signed a release on 23 may 2017 publishing results of the Yang’s Investigation presented some firm measure that the President of the Republic had taken in relation to the accident.

Presidential measures

The first presidential measure was for the results of the investigation to be forwarded to the judiciary for legal actions to be taken against those found guilty of being responsible for the tragic accident.

More than one year after, the country is still to see a legal case launched by the state against identified victims. Even the sanctions on those held responsible prescribed by the President are still to be felt.

The Head of State equally ordered for the setting up of a Railway Heritage Management Company which will be responsible for the maintenance on the railway network and a revision of the 19 January 1999 concession agreement with Camrail including its two amendments of 2005 and 2008

Besides saluting the efforts of the railway company in compensating victims, Paul Biya also requested the government to disburse one billion FCFA to the victims and their families.

The erection of a commemorative monument was also part of the measures taken by the Head of State.

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Louvier Kindo
Louvier Kindo 41 Articles

Louvier Kindo Tombe, passionate about radio. He is interested since 2017 in the issues of decentralization, local development and governance.

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