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Boko Haram Dents Chad, Cameroon Economies


Soldiers guard a market in N'Djamena following a suicide bomb attack on July 11, 2015.

Soldiers guard a market in N'Djamena following a suicide bomb attack on July 11, 2015.


Attacks from Boko Haram militants are hurting the economies of Chad and northern Cameroon.

The militants often attack trucks transporting goods to the two central African nations. Some of the goods come from Borno state in nearby Nigeria.

Naffissa Adja works at one of the most popular stores in N’djamena, the capital of Chad. She says she was not paid last month. She adds that the store has not received supplies from Borno state for several months. Business is slow because of attacks on the store’s supply trucks.

Tocba Haman is a truck driver. He says he no longer goes to Nigeria for supplies because Boko Haram targets trucks and kills drivers.

He says the militants continue to control Nigerian villages, especially around Borno state. They also seize goods and kill traders. He says business activity in Chad will continue to decrease, even with many soldiers on roads and in markets.

Abdoul Said is a customs official in Chad. He says Boko Haram attacked trucks last Saturday in Gambarou, a Nigerian town on the border with Cameroon.

He says Boko Haram fighters have attacked and seized many vehicles in the past two weeks. He says recently, the militants seized three trucks carrying goods to northern Cameroon and N’djamena.

The Chadian capital is less than 50 kilometers from Borno state, an area currently under the control of the Islamist group. Many goods arriving in Chad and northeastern Cameroon are shipped from Maiduguri, in the center of Borno state.

Abba Kabbir is a member of Cameroon’s national assembly. He says the economies of northern Cameroon and Chad are suffering because the militants control roads in Nigeria. Simple goods and manufactured products like telephones and farming tools enter Chad on these roads.

He says if Boko Haram continues to control the border roads, economic activity will continue to be paralyzed in Chad, northern Cameroon and parts of northeastern Nigeria. He says he and others want the military to stop the attacks.

I’m Christopher Jones-Cruise.

Edwin Moki Kindzeka reported on this story from N’djamena, Chad. Christopher Jones-Cruise adapted his report into Learning English. George Grow was the editor.

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Words in This Story

paralyze – v. to make (someone or something) unable to operate, act or move

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