Life could be challenging in rural Cameroon, especially in conflict-hit Southwest, but many people are seeking ways to overcome the challenges and people in Muyuka in the Southwest region are no exception and they are using sand mining to eke out a livelihood.
Sand mining is still a major source of livelihood to many youths in Muyuka, but technology is threatening to render them unemployed and financially poor.
Recently, some youths in Muyuka took to the streets to protest against the use of machines in sand quarries and they are determined to take their fight to the highest office in the land.
Based on expert opinion, technology will surely improve productivity and profits but not for the youths who do not have faith in it and they are not in the mood to welcome such technology.
According to sources in Muyuka, a certain businessman from Buea had introduced the use of machines in the sand quarries, making it possible for just seven people to be employed, thus rendering many youths jobless since the machines are likely to replace human labour.
One of the sources disclosed that, sand quarries employ about ninety five percent of the youths, and that had been their main source of livelihood since the start of the armed conflict.
The use of technology, which is supposed to be an event for jubilation, is causing a nightmare for these youths who prefer digging and extracting sand the traditional way.
Several young men and women turned to sand digging as the only means of survival when the crisis escalated and they are willing to continue doing so in the years to come.
By Cecilia Manjang