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21 Things You Didn’t Know About Cameroon

The name Cameroon was derived from the Portuguese phrase “Rio dos Camaroes” meaning River of Prawns. After the struggle for power between the Portuguese, German, British and French, Cameroon finally reached independence in 1960, with French

  1. The name Cameroon was derived from the Portuguese phrase “Rio dos Camaroes” meaning River of Prawns.
  2. After the struggle for power between the Portuguese, German, British and French, Cameroon finally reached independence in 1960, with French Cameroon gaining full control.
  3. Cameroon’s flag has three bands of green, red, and yellow (recalling the flag of France); with a centered yellow five-pointed star, which is referred to as the “star of unity”.
  4. Cameroon’s national football (soccer) team has qualified for FIFA World Cup 6 times, more than that of any other African country; and was the first to reach the quarterfinals.
  5. Successful Cameroonian model, Marion Gako Melanie Kamayou, graced the cover of the 2010 May issue of Vogue Africa.
  6. Cameroonian food has a good bit of French and Portuguese influence, which can be seen in its national dish, Ndole Stew. This stew is made of fish or beef, with nuts, greens, and spices.
  7. Cocoa, coffee and cotton are some of Cameroon’s main cash crops.
  8. In Bamenda, a drive along Ring Road boasts some of the best views the country has to offer.
  9. Limbe is known for its beautiful beaches located on the coastal side of Mount Cameroon, an active volcano, and the tallest mountain in West Africa. It is rumored that the black sandy beaches of Limbe possess magical powers.
  10. In the North West region of Cameroon, Belo hosts a weekly market comprising of various goods such meats and produce, textiles and clothes.
  11. The Lobe Waterfall, located in Kribi, falls straight into the Atlantic Ocean. Tours to the waterfall can be arranged through The Rural Development Centre (RUDEC).
  12. Waza National Park, one of Cameroon’s most prized wildlife areas, has one of the largest mammal populations in Central West Africa. It is also known for its wide variety of bird species.
  13. Dja Faunal Reserve, one of the largest and most protected rainforests in Africa, has been a UNESCO world heritage site since 1987.
  14. The government describes the country as “Africa in miniature”; promoting its diversity of climate, culture, and geography, experienced in various African countries.
  15. Cameroon has one of the highest literacy rates in Africa.
  16. Nigerian music influenced Prince Nico Mbarga’s highlife hit song “Sweet Mother” is the top-selling African record in history.
  17. On August 14 2008, Nigeria transferred the “oil-rich” Bakassi peninsula to Cameroon, following a 2002 International Court of Justice verdict. The inhabitants (mostly Calabar) were not required to move or to change their nationality thus given Cameroon a substantial Nigerian population.
  18. Grammy-nominated musicians, sisters, Les Nubians’ late mother was from Cameroon.
  19. A popular marketing campaign (1999-2006) by Guinness which featured the character, Michael Power was shot in locations in Cameroon.
  20. A DNA test done in 2006 reviled that legendary musician; Quincy Jones is of the Tikar region of Cameron ancestry.
  21. President Paul Biya became Cameroon’s Prime Minister in June 1975; and later the President in November 1982. Making him the longest ruling non-royal leader in the world.
Debo Folorunsho
Debo Folorunsho serves as CEO of Applause Africa Communications and Executive Producer of the African Diaspora Awards. He has worked in Visual Design at Music Creative Group, Warner Music Communications and Design Group, and Permission Data.
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