“I received news of the derailment which resulted in heavy material damage, many deaths and casualties. My thoughts and immediate words of comfort go out first of all to the families of those killed and to the injured. I wish to once again extend to them my heartfelt condolences. I wish a speedy recovery to those injured.

Faced with such an unprecedented disaster in our country, I have instructed the Government to take a number of actions and measures. In particular, I have prescribed an in-depth inquiry into the root causes of this incident or tragedy. I have also instructed that those injured should be treated in the various hospitals at the expense of the State. I have decided that October 24 should be declared a national day of mourning.

I believe that this is the best way to express solidarity between the entire nation and the victims of this disaster.

I must also underscore that the Government’s response was fairly positive, be it with regard to the engineers who did their best to re-establish traffic between Yaounde and Douala and all the other government services, including the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Public Works, which transported the victims and combed through the area to determine the extent of the disaster.

I believe that this national day of mourning should be placed under the banner of patriotic fervour, under the sign of the union of hearts so that together we can continue to meet future challenges. At any rate, I urge Cameroonians to be courageous, dynamic and determined in such circumstances”.


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