A man whose name we got as Salifu has been arrested after torturing his wife to death in Mbouda, West Region of Cameroon. According to reliable sources, Salifu who hails from Baba 1 in Ngoketunjia Division of the North West region has been living in Mbouda with his two wives; the deceased and another woman. He has been suspecting his second wife who was allegedly in her early twenties and also a native of Baba 1 of having an extramarital affair with a butcher at Mbouda market.
On April 22nd 2019, his suspicions were finally confirmed when he overheard the lady discussing with the butcher on phone. Driven by the content of the discussion, he immediately confronted her and pressurized her to confess her infidelity. The victim under pressure accepted that she has been having an intimate relationship with the butcher but has been intimate with him only on six occasions. This only got the man angrier. After tying and beating her up, he used a hot pressing iron to torture her on her buttocks and genitals. He later locked her up in a room and instructed his first wife not to give the victim food or water for two days.
The victim was already dying when the man opened the room two days later but instead of taking her to a hospital, he decided to aggravate the already volatile situation by kicking her out of the house. The victim was taken to a hospital by a passer-by who found her on the road but the man followed them to the hospital and threatened that he was going to set the hospital on fire if the woman was treated. The lady later gave up the ghost that same night.
When the man learnt that his wife was death, he immediately escaped to Bafoussam, a city in the same region but was later apprehended by security forces. We learnt that the deceased had two kids with Salifu and was still breastfeeding the second child before the tragic incident.
This is just one out of several cases of gender based violence in Cameroon. Last year, a woman was beaten to death in Limbe, South West region of Cameroon by her husband over marital misunderstandings. Few months back, a woman in the Littoral region was hospitalized after she was severely beaten and wounded by her husband almost to the point of death. Her husband accused her of infidelity because of a single text message he saw in her phone. According to the woman, she didn’t even know who the sender was and was not even aware of the existence of such a message in her phone until it was discovered by her husband.
Just barely few weeks back, another incident happened in the neighborhood of Bojongo – Douala, Littoral region. A man butchered his wife to death late at night and later set her corpse and the entire house on fire. According to the man, his wife denied him access into a house he labored hard to build and asked him to rather stay in another house they both owned. After a series of disagreements, the man who had already moved into the second house, decided to sneaked back into the first house at night to take his wife’s life. The man who regretted his action and vowed to take his own life was later apprehended by the forces of law and other from his hideout.
Many other cases have gone unreported. Well, violence has certainly never solved any problem. No matter how terrible the situation is, there are definitely better approaches to handle it. It is therefore clear that the fight against gender based violence needs to be intensified, if not, we will probably have to deal with more of such cases in the future.