Women’s Day Celebrations: SW Female Customs Assist Orphans, Sport Walk, Visit Bimbia Slave Trade Site

Mar 9, 2024

SW Customs Women (Gabelles) President, Teclair (2nd from L) pose with Col. Mvondo of the BIR at Man O War Bay

By Francis Tim Mbom

The Southwest Female Customs Officers marked the celebration the 39 edition of the International Women’s Day by bringing happiness and smiles to the lives of some 24 orphans.
This was at the Children Full of Grace Orphanage where the Female Customs Officers under the umbrella association, Gabelles, led by their President, Teclair Same Nsame, on Thursday, March 7, took a good consignment of assistance made up of ten bags of cement to help in the construction of the Binbia orphanage.
Besides this cement, they also offered cartons of food items, T-shirts among others to the Orphanage which is located at Bimbia, Limbe III Sub Division.
This humanitarian gesture from the SW Customs Officers, their President said, especially supported by the SW Chief of Sector, Nyamsi Daniel Mongue.
The items were happily received and appreciated by the Promoter of the Orphanage, Lydia Ngenye as she said:
“I am so happy with all the group. I am so happy for everything that they brought for us… I pray that the Lord Almighty continue to bless them mightily. That’s the action that women have to do. They have really shown that they are mothers.”

They pose for aroup picture after sports walk
They pose for aroup picture after sports walk

The visit to the orphanage was the last item of this said Thursday as the Customs women started off their activities with an early morning eight kilometre sports walk.
The SW Gabelles women who were joined by some of their male colleagues walked from Down Beach in Limbe I down to the BIR Camp at Man O War Bay.
And they were received at the BIR Camp by Lt. Colonel Mvondo who treated them with a reach history about the origin of the name ‘Man of War’ Bay, rather known today as Man O War Bay.
Lt. Mvondo’s fine mastery of the history of Bimbia and Cameroon was heartily applauded by the Customs officers and everyone who was there.

Customs Officers pose by the Bimbia Slave Trade village sign Post.
Customs Officers pose by the Bimbia Slave Trade village sign Post.

For instance, he made his visitors to understand that the original founder or settler at Bimbia came from the Manga Bell lineage in Douala called ‘Bimbe’ and settled in today’s Bimbia.Thus, the name Bimbia.
And Colonel Mvondo further disclosed that the three villages that make up Bimbia today – Bonabile, Bonagombe and Dikolo were named after the three Children that ‘Bimbe’ gave birth to.

Bimbia Slave Trade Village Visit:
After the rich historic treat offered by the Colonel, the Customs women then made a visit to the Bimbia Slave Trade Village located at Dikolo village, some kilometers away from the BIR Camp at Man O War Bay.
They were led to the Slave Trade Site by Mbimbi Edimo, a tour guide at the Limbe III Council.
At the end the women sounded happy to have visited the Bimbia Slave Trade site which they said gave them the opportunity to come face-to-face with the place where some of their fore parents were sold off into slavery during the 17 and 1800s.
But they were rather saddened and aggrieved when told about the sheer torture and sufferings that their fore father’s, mothers, brothers and sisters went through in the process that culminated to their being sold to go work in plantations and factories in the Americas and Europe.
“This has been a moment for me to commune with the sufferings of our fore parents who were taken away by force, tortured and sold off as some common merchandise,” Teclair Nsame said.
“I think that this visit was important because Bimbia embodies a great lot about the history of Cameroon,” she added.
Teclair Nsame, the President of Gabelles is also the Chief of Service in charge of Statistics and Performance at the SW Customs Sector.
To add, the Principal Controller of the Mobile Customs Brigade, Prudencia Tabot had this to say: ” It’s my first time to be here and I think it’s wonderful…Bimbia is the history of Cameroon. In fact, it is so sad when I get the history of Bimbia how our forefathers were being treated.”
In all the visiting Customs women were happy about what they saw and learned as they capped their visit with picture shots as well as shared their views on their experiences at the Site.
Though amazed at the historic importance of this site, they strongly recommended that the Government really needs to tar the road that leads to the Bimbia Slave Trade Village.
For their visit to the Slave Trade village on Thursday, March 7, was more or less a test of endurance owing to the rough and rugged state of the road to this historic site. The Customs women trekked for 3 Km from Chop Farm where the Limbe III Council Chambers is located right to the Slave Trade site and back.
“I would want to use this opportunity to plead with the authorities to see what they can do to amend the state of the road leading to this very important site that holds the history of our past,” Teclair Nsame said.

Symbolic handing over of assistance by the Customs Women (Gabelles) SW to the Children Full of Grace Orphanage, Bimbia
Symbolic handing over of assistance by the Customs Women (Gabelles) SW to the Children Full of Grace Orphanage, Bimbia

The Customs women concluded their activities of the Women’s week on Friday, March 9, by taking part in the march past event that took place at the Limbe Community field. It is worthy to note that their activities began on Wednesday, March 6, with a roundtable conference at the SW Customs Sector Office at Bota where the women discussed on the theme of the celebration: “Invest in women; accelerate progress.”