Here are 17 Interesting Cameroon facts.

1-5 Cameroon Facts

1. In 1986, an actual “cloud of death” swept through an area of Cameroon, suddenly asphyxiating everything in its path, including 4 villages, 1,700 people, and 3,500 livestock. – Source

2. During the Great Depression, African colonial subjects living in the Cameroons took up a collection to aid the starving people of America, ultimately mailing $3.77 to the mayor of New York City to assist relief efforts there. – Source

3. Two men in Cameroon were each sentenced to 5 years in prison for “looking gay”, after entering a bar together and ordering Bailey’s Irish Cream. – Source

4. The Cross River gorilla, found in a few forest patches in Cameroon, is the world’s rarest great ape and was unknown to science until the early 20th century. – Source

5. “Breast Ironing” is a common practice in Cameroon and amongst its diaspora. It is done to make young girls less susceptible to rape and to encourage girls to pursue education. – Source

6-10 Cameroon Facts

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6. The world’s longest ruling non-royal national leader is Paul Biya, who has been the dictator of Cameroon since 1975. – Source

7. Cameroon name comes from the Portuguese word for shrimps. – Source

8. In Cameroon, it is completely socially acceptable to eat soil due to the belief that it helps expecting mother’s ward off disease. – Source

9. Lisa Kudrow is a sex symbol in Cameroon. – Source

10. AIDS origin traced to chimp group in Cameroon. – Source

11-15 Cameroon Facts

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11. The first video game studio in Central Africa, Kiro’o Games, was opened in Cameroon in late 2013. – Source

12. Douala’s beaches in Cameroon have chocolate-brown sand from volcanic, dark igneous rock particles. – Source

13. About 4.77% of the adult population, or 657,500 Cameroonians, are infected with HIV/AIDS. In 2014, HIV/AIDS was responsible for 34,200 deaths in Cameroon alone. – Source

14. The German colony of Cameroon, first established in 1884, became French Cameroon and British Cameroons when WWI British, French, and Belgian troops drove out the Germans in 1916. After the Treaty of Versailles and a 1919 League of Nations mandate, 80% of Cameroon was officially granted to France, while the remaining Western territory was awarded to Britain. – Source

15. In much of Cameroon, marriages are still arranged, although this tradition has been fading in recent years. The groom is expected to provide a dowry to his bride or her family, which may consist of goods such as palm wine, an animal, or bushmeat. A man can take multiple wives if he can pay the dowry for each bride. – Source

16-17 Cameroon Facts

16. To help dissuade illegal poaching, Cameroon’s government burned over 2,000 tusks and 1,753 ivory objects seized for a total of 3.5 tons of ivory. The ivory was destroyed to keep it off of the black market. Over 600 firearms and 3,000 pieces of ammunition were also seized in an effort to protect elephant populations. – Source

17. Traffic accidents claim an average of 4,700 victims per year on Cameroonian streets. In 2015 alone, 7,000 were wounded or disabled, for an average of 12 victims per day. Many of the accidents occur due to poor roads and high speeds. – Source


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Last Update: January 14, 2018