Limbe-Bamenda Pipeline – Government assesses environmental, socio economic impact

officials of  Competing Bet discuss with community representatives at the Santa Divisional Office Hall

officials of Competing Bet discuss with community representatives at the Santa Divisional Office Hall

Competing Bet Cameroon, a civil engineering and consultant group has started to assess the environmental and socio-economic impact to the population and habitats along the 380 km long Limbe-Bamenda pipeline, soon to be constructed.

Ngaliako Judy and Gomsi Charles Mitterrand technicians with Competing Bet made stopovers this week in the subdivisions along the Bamenda-Bafoussam road to discuss the impact of the project with representative of the various communities.

The team was in Babadjou and Santa subdivisions on Wednesday July 31, 2013 where they met with the administrative, traditional and village development authorities.

They announced that the pipeline would be 60 cm in diameter and would be placed 1.5 m deep into the ground. It would be constructed beside the road, and property on the chosen side of the road for the pipeline would be displaced 10 m from the road. Those with land certificate would be fully compensated Ngaliako Judy said.

After the pipeline had been laid, farmers can plant crops on their land such as maize, beans, cocoyam and yams, but they would not be allowed to plant trees, or construct on it.

Mr. Ngaliako also said the project would create employment opportunities both long and short term along the path of the pipeline, but would also destroy many houses, trees, farms and property found on its part, because of the huge influx of construction workers cases of teen pregnancy, and petit robbery would abound. He also warned of fire hazards as thieves and vandals would attempt to steal petroleum products from the pipeline.

Each village or community through which the pipeline passes would be given the opportunity to select four priority projects that they would like to be provided for them. The Company would then chose one and construct for the community as a plough back. This could be a school, water scheme, roads, or health centre he said.

Today’s meeting he said was merely to sensitize the roadside communities and that more of such meeting are due in the months ahead. He called on the community representative to start sensitizing their people now.

The Technical file of the project indicates the pipeline would transport Diesel, petrol, kerosene and natural gas from Limbe to Bafoussam and Bamenda. There would be two storage facilities in Bafoussam and Bamenda, four pumping stations between Bamenda and Bafoussam to surmount various high relief obstacles.

The Limbe-Bamenda pipeline (3380 km) would be constructed by a South Korean company, 3PL Cameroon while the second pipeline of 315km between Limbe and Yaounde passing through Douala would be constructed by an American consortium-Govind Development Plc.

By Abongwa Fozo

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