14 Jan 2016
Visit to the former slave market of Bimbia
Bimbia is a remote locality situated about 11 kilometers from Limbe city in the South West Region of Cameroon. Some three centuries ago, Bimbia was apparently more prominent than Limbe city. It was from here that a substantial number of slaves from Cameroon were shipped to the Americas during the transatlantic slave trade. For some unexplained reasons, this prominent slave outpost has remained unsung and stocked away in a huge forested zone.
It is just a couple of years ago that there was rekindled interest in this missing link of the history of slavery. With material support from abroad, work is in progress to discover and somehow preserve the physical relics of Bimbia’s sordid past.
Historians generally agree that the deportation of people through Bimbia largely took place between 1750 and 1870. Our visit to this site unveiled a huge natural forest that will conveniently double as a national park and a historical site.
So far, relics of some structures that were used to restrain and house slaves have been discovered. It was obvious from my observation that most of the metallic relics would have been carted away by scavengers of metallic products that have been active on the Cameroon scene in the past 15 years.
Slaves walked through the door above to board ships in the sea below for a one way trip to the Americas. Also see video as I walk from the seaside to the door of no return.
If you want to understand this story better, I will recommend that you read Lema Abeng-Nsah’s interview of Dr Lisa Aubrey (an associate professor of African American studies & political science). Link below
Njei Moses Timah