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Bafoussam is the capital and largest city of the West Region of Cameroon, in the Bamboutos Mountains. It is equally the capital of the Mifi division. Over the years, Bafoussam has grown to include all the three cities in the Mifi division which are; Bafoussam I (Bafoussam proper), Bafoussam II (Baleng), and Bafoussam III (Bamougoum). The city had a population of 347,517 inhabitants (at the 2008 Census). The city is the region's center of trade. People are farming coffee, potatoes, maize and beans. The city has also a coffee processing facility and brewery. It is the main city of the Bamiléké people and is home to the Bafoussam chief's palace. Bafoussam is a group composed of 07 villages (Bamendzi, Banengo, Ndiangdam, Ndiangsouoh, Ndiangbou, Toukouop, Ngoueng and Banengo city B) with 46 districts or sub-villages.The main neighborhoods of the city are Banego, Djeleng, Famla (sometimes called Akwa), Kamkop, Quartier Eveché, Quartier Haussa and Tamdja.[1]

Bafoussam has two main markets (Marché A and Marché B), several internet cafes, restaurants and supermarkets and a movie theater. Most of Bafoussam nightlife centers on the area called Akwa (so-named in honor of the neighborhood in Douala). Akwa features several bars, stores, and a live music venue, along with customary vendors of soya (grilled beef meat brochettes), poisson braisé (grilled fish) and other foods.[1]

This is the birthplace of footballer Geremi and his 17 brothers and sisters, as well as the birthplace of his cousin Pierre Webó.

History

The Bafoussam people originate from the Bamileke ethnic group, which are the natives of the same region. Claims are made that the Bamileke were descendants of the baladis who left Egypt in the ninth century of our era. They arrived in the Tikar region around the middle of the twelfth century before dividing around 1360 when their last king, King Ndeh, died. Yende, first prince, refused the throne and crossed the Nun (Noun river) to found the Bafoussam kingdom. His sister turned to the Banso area (there are about thirty Bamileke villages in the English-speaking North West). Two decades later, Ncharé, the youngest, went down to the plain of Noun to found the Bamoun kingdom. From Bafoussam were born almost all the other Bamileke Kingdoms, between the fifteenth century and the twentieth century (Bansoa was born in 1910 following the forced exile of Fo Taghe of Bafoussam)[2][3]

Name

Originally, Bafoussam is written in Bafoussam dialect "Pe Foussan" or "Pe Fussep" which literally means "people of ......". Over time, "Pe" has become "Ba" while retaining the same meaning.

When Westerners arrived, they united the two sound elements "Pe" and "Foussan" to make Bafoussam.

Another source, however, argues that Bafoussam is Fuh Sep's "bad western translation", meaning "we earn more by selling in detail than wholesale". According to this version, the Bafoussam would be a people who bought wholesale to resell in detail or who sold in detail by measuring in small baskets. Fuh here means to measure and Sap or Sep which means profit or treasure, to symbolize by the small basket in which one sold in detail. Pefuhssap or Pefuhssep means "those who have discovered that profit (treasure) is in retail".

It is nevertheless noted that the two sources of information on the origin of the name Bafoussam are not contradictory and it is safe to say that the Bafoussam left their place of residence from the Tikar plain with their name, since they already practised retail trade with small baskets.[1]

Birth of Bafoussam city

In 1945, an unexpected meeting between the colonial administrator of the Bamileke region (during the colonial times, the present day West region was called the Bamileke region) and the monarch of Fu'sap (Bafoussam), Chukhocha Paul, who ruled from 1933 to 1958, laid the foundation for increasing the importance of Bafoussam, which lied at the crossroads between British Southern Cameroons and French Cameroon.

By 1950, when Bafoussam became a subdivision of the French colonial administration headed by Jacques Lestrigang, very quickly, the village became cosmopolitan because located at the intercession of the tracks connecting the two Cameroon and also the cities charged with history that are Dschang, Foumban and Ngaoundéré. Thus the first servicing plan was designed by the French architect Dufayard. Its execution, associated with the dynamism of the populations which occupied it, had to trigger the skyrocketing of the city. Then came his twinning with the city of Bayeux, a city located in Calvados, France.

As the saying goes "for souls nobly born, valor doesn't await the passing of years", Bafoussam replaced Dschang a few years later as the capital of the West Region (then West Province) and equally replaced Nkongsamba as the economic hub of the region. Thus, important economic operators including the Beac, Brasseries of Cameroon, and other industrial units in the making orchestrated a rush to the new city.[4]

Geography

Topography

Bafoussam is built in the foothills of the Banengo and Baleng hills that are covered with savannah vegetation. The city, located at about 1.5 km above sea level is built on stairs on the perimeters of Tamdja neighborhoods (1st floor), shopping center and Djemoum (2nd floor), Djeleng (3rd floor) and lower corners called Marie rurale and Tougang (4th level).

Climate

The climate is constantly cool with a temperature oscillating between 15 ° and 22 ° c. With climate change in recent years, Bafoussam sometimes reaches 28 ° C during the dry season that extends from mid-November to mid-March (four months). The rainy season lasts eight months, from mid-March to mid-November.

Köppen-Geiger climate classification system classifies its climate as Subtropical highland Climate (Cwb) or an Oceanic Climate type (Cwb), featuring a dry and cool to cold winters and warm to cool summers(With Cool nights on summers) with some few hot days,[5] however, its temperatures are lower than other locations with this classification due to its high elevation.

Its highest record temperature was 41 °C (106 °F) on April 28, 1981, while its lowest record temperatures was 0 °C (32 °F) on December 19, 1981.[6]

Climate data for Bafoussam
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 33
(91)
39
(102)
37
(99)
41
(106)
39
(102)
36
(97)
35
(95)
36
(97)
33
(91)
40
(104)
34
(93)
39
(102)
41
(106)
Average high °C (°F) 27
(81)
27.6
(81.7)
26.9
(80.4)
26.1
(79)
25.2
(77.4)
23.8
(74.8)
23
(73)
23.2
(73.8)
23.8
(74.8)
24.1
(75.4)
24.9
(76.8)
25.9
(78.6)
25.12
(77.22)
Daily mean °C (°F) 20.7
(69.3)
21.1
(70)
21.6
(70.9)
21
(70)
20.3
(68.5)
19.4
(66.9)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19
(66)
19.2
(66.6)
19.8
(67.6)
20.2
(68.4)
20.02
(68.02)
Average low °C (°F) 14.5
(58.1)
14.7
(58.5)
16.3
(61.3)
16
(61)
15.5
(59.9)
15.1
(59.2)
15
(59)
14.9
(58.8)
14.3
(57.7)
14.3
(57.7)
14.8
(58.6)
14.5
(58.1)
14.99
(58.99)
Record low °C (°F) 8
(46)
2
(36)
3
(37)
12
(54)
11
(52)
14
(57)
3
(37)
8
(46)
4
(39)
12
(54)
11
(52)
0
(32)
0
(32)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 11
(0.43)
34
(1.34)
106
(4.17)
170
(6.69)
184
(7.24)
197
(7.76)
255
(10.04)
255
(10.04)
321
(12.64)
270
(10.63)
58
(2.28)
10
(0.39)
1,871
(73.65)
Source #1: Climate-Data.org (altitude: 1432m)[5]
Source #2: Voodoo Skies for record temperatures[6]

Waterfalls

The city is not very rich in natural rivers. The Mifi River runs along the southern part of the city to fall in the void creating the fall of the Metche. Other small streams including Megang, Nlom and Vava exist in the city. Next to the fall of the Metche, which is a real attraction, Lake Baleng (this crater lake) is also a tourist attraction.[7]

Twin towns - Sister cities

Bafoussam is twinned with:

References

  1. ^ a b c "Histoire de Bafoussam". Marie de Bafoussam 1er. Retrieved 26 February 2018. 
  2. ^ Toukam, Dieudonné (2010). Histoire et anthropologie du peuple bamiléké. L'Harmattan. p. 242. 
  3. ^ Toukam, Dieudonné (2008). Parlons bamiléké. Paris: L'Harmattan. p. 255. 
  4. ^ "Naissance et Évolution de la Ville de Bafoussam". Festival International du Cinema Independent de Bafoussam. 2017. Retrieved 26 February 2018. 
  5. ^ a b "Climate: Bafoussam - Climate graph, Temperature graph, Climate table". Climate-Data.org. Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 2013-12-01. 
  6. ^ a b "Bafoussam, Cameroon". Voodoo Skies. Retrieved 2013-12-01. 
  7. ^ "Geographie physique de la ville de Bafoussam". Festival International du Cinema Independent de Bafoussam. Retrieved 26 February 2018. 
  8. ^ "Les villes jumelles Ville de Bayeux". Bayeux. Retrieved 26 February 2018. 

Coordinates: 05°28′N 10°25′E / 5.467°N 10.417°E / 5.467; 10.417