By Gilla Everdine in Bamenda
Contrary to news reports online on the removal of a checkpoint in Matazem, gateway to the North West Region, findings show that the checkpoint has not been removed as indicated in the various reports but has been shifted to Babadjou. Fact finding from Nde Daniel a Police Officer at the Matazine Santa high ways says the Control Post was shifted from Matazem to Taurmanka Babadjour to decongest traffic and discourage thieves and hawkers who have taken advantage of the slow traffic around Matazem.
According to posts or blogs Published Online such as the Observer 237, the Upfrontspost.blogspot, and the Standard Chronicles published on 10th August 2022, the dismantled checkpoints along the Santa Matazem highway has led to passengers and drivers plying the Bamenda-Santa Matazem high way expressing a lot of joy and satisfaction as they deemed the checkpoints as unnecessary and bothersome.
Fact-finding indicates that these Check points have not been dismantled as indicated but they have been shifted ahead. Talking to Ndum Cynthia, a business lady who plies the road on daily basis she complained how, “it has completely wiped off traffic along the Matazem high way while businesses that way is gradually slow due to no control anymore”.
Furthermore, on the 11th of August 2022, another news blog focused on the long distance walk by passengers to present their ID cards at the Matazem police checkpoints was now a thing of the past following the shifting of the checkpoints at the Matazem high way.
As reported by the standard Chronicles on 15th August 2022, an online blog, reviewed how a Bamenda based journalist who just returned from Douala for a business trip complained how they arrived at Matazem at 4am and succeeded in filling past the two security checkpoints after a four hour delay as cars had to wait up to 6am before the opening of the borders at Matazem.
Talking to a bus driver at the Vatican express Bamenda who plies the Santa Matazem high way on daily basis, Ngala Paul expresses his worries as he doesn’t know when the control at the checkpoint will comes to an end and says the “shift of the control post from Matazem to Babadjou has caused a low output of business and less traffic along the Santa Matazem high way.”
However, further interviews points out that indeed the control post has not been dismantled. one truck driver who plies the road on weekly basis, Ngang Pascal quips “the control post has just been shifted from Matazine up to Toumanka Babajour on the Bamenda Mbouda road stretch.” He further indicated that “the same amount of money paid at Matazem is same amount paid at Toumanka”.
From the above write up after fact- checking the story on the Matazem high way being dismantled, the points listed above prove that the Checkpoint along the Matazem high way has not been dismantled but has been shifted ahead in Tourmanka Babadjou to reduce the traffic congestion at the Matazem high way.