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Nalova Akua

Yaounde, Cameroon
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About Nalova
Nalova Akua, an acclaimed journalist, has made significant strides in the field of environmental journalism, particularly focusing on the challenges posed by climate change in Africa. His insightful reporting has brought to light the struggles of communities in Cameroon facing natural disasters, such as floods and landslides, and the socioeconomic impacts on those dependent on agriculture and living in coastal areas. Akua's dedication to environmental conservation is evident in his work, including a piece on the invasive plant in Lake Ossa, which was featured in BBC Future Planet. His journalistic excellence was recognized when he received the prestigious 2022 Michael Elliott Award for Excellence in African Storytelling, an accolade that came with a reporting grant and a two-week internship at The Economist headquarters in London.

In addition to his environmental reporting, Akua has been instrumental in addressing public health issues, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccine hesitancy in Cameroon, through his contributions to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. His commitment to societal well-being is further exemplified by his recognition as the 2022 Best Journalist by Cameroon's leading newspaper, The Guardian Post, for his "rare mastery of investigative journalism." Akua's works have been published in prominent media outlets including BBC Global News, Euronews Green, The Epoch Times, Zenger News, African Arguments, and EL PAÍS, showcasing his ability to bring critical issues to a global audience.

Akua's journalistic prowess is underpinned by a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and a skill set that includes thorough investigation, a strong commitment to source protection, and expertise in interviewing, reporting, and fact-checking. His proven ability to work efficiently in fast-paced environments and his adeptness at delivering news across various platforms have distinguished him in the competitive media industry. His articles not only give a voice to the unheard but also shine a light on issues that might otherwise remain obscured, serving society through the power of storytelling.
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Cameroon teams up with neighbors to contain polio

02 Mar 2024  |  www.gavi.org
Cameroon, in collaboration with Nigeria, Niger, Chad, and the Central African Republic, conducted a large-scale polio vaccination campaign from March 1-3, 2024, targeting children aged 0-5 years. This coordinated effort aims to combat the spread of type 2 circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (PVDV2c), which has been a significant public health concern in the region. The campaign included administering the new oral polio vaccine (nVPO2) and providing catch-up doses for children who missed routine vaccinations. Experts emphasize the importance of synchronized vaccination to ensure comprehensive coverage and prevent the virus's spread. Despite achieving polio-free status in 2020, Cameroon faces challenges in maintaining this status due to the ongoing threat of PVDV2c. The campaign's success relies on high vaccination coverage and community mobilization.

Journey to the African origins of stolen objects

01 Mar 2024  |  El País
The article discusses the efforts and challenges faced by African countries in reclaiming cultural artifacts that were taken during colonial times by European powers. It highlights specific cases from Cameroon, Benin, and Senegal, where significant cultural objects such as statues, ceremonial pieces, and human remains are being requested for return. The article also touches on the complex legal and ethical considerations surrounding the restitution of these artifacts, the cultural significance they hold for the communities of origin, and the impact of their potential return on national identity and historical narrative.

Mali: Defiant and alone, will the junta defeat the jihadis?

A turning point: Cameroon rolls out world’s first malaria vaccine

22 Jan 2024  |  gavi.org
Cameroon has initiated the rollout of the RTS,S malaria vaccine, the first of its kind to be recommended by the WHO, with 331,200 doses delivered. The vaccine targets Plasmodium falciparum and is administered in four doses. Despite its lower efficacy compared to other vaccines, it represents a significant advancement in malaria management. The rollout will initially cover 42 health districts, aiming to vaccinate around 249,133 children aged 0–24 months. Trials have proven the vaccine's safety and effectiveness, with a 36% protective efficacy. The introduction of the vaccine is expected to reduce malaria-related deaths and hospitalizations significantly. Educational sessions and community dialogues are being conducted to overcome skepticism and misinformation about the vaccine.

A Grim New Phase in Sudan’s War as Rebel Militias Open New Fronts

24 Nov 2023  |  theepochtimes.com
Sudan is experiencing a catastrophic humanitarian crisis with millions in need of food, water, and medicine. Rebel groups JEM and SLM, once neutral, have allied with the Sudanese military against the RSF, which is accused of crimes against humanity. The RSF has gained control over most of Darfur, including Nyala, and is advancing in Khartoum. The SAF controls Port Sudan and is trying to block aid to RSF territories. International intervention is called for to prevent Sudan from descending into a state of fiefdoms and warlords. U.S. officials criticize the Biden administration's minimal strategy in Sudan, while experts warn of a potential Libya/Somalia scenario without swift action.

Climate change wreaks havoc in Cameroon

28 Oct 2023  |  EL PAÍS English
Cameroon faces severe impacts from climate change, including desertification in the north and rising sea levels in the southwest. The National Observatory on Climate Change highlights the country's vulnerability to extreme weather events, such as droughts, floods, and heatwaves. Recent heavy rains caused a dam to break in Yaoundé, leading to significant destruction and loss of life. Coastal areas like Douala are experiencing erosion and rising sea levels, threatening livelihoods and infrastructure. Experts call for immediate measures to mitigate these effects, including better urban planning, coastal protection, and increased awareness and preparedness.

Cameroon's Battle with Climate Change: A Nation on the Brink

28 Oct 2023  |  EL PAÍS English
The article discusses the severe impact of climate change on Cameroon, highlighting the country's vulnerability due to its geographical location. It covers recent natural disasters, such as floods and landslides, exacerbated by climate change and poor infrastructure maintenance. The National Observatory on Climate Change (NOCC) had warned of extreme rainfall, which led to a dam collapse in Yaoundé, resulting in significant destruction and loss of life. The article also touches on the socioeconomic impact of climate change, particularly on women and those in the agricultural sector. It emphasizes the threat to development posed by climate change, with the World Bank and UN Environment Programme (UNEP) providing data on the affected population and economy. The rising sea levels and coastal erosion are also causing problems for coastal communities and the fishing industry. Experts from the University of Yaoundé suggest measures to mitigate these effects, including infrastructure improvements, vegetation planting, and community awareness and disaster management.

Cameroon Reels From Devastating ‘Man-Made’ Mudslide That Killed Dozens

17 Oct 2023  |  theepochtimes.com
A mudslide in Yaounde, Cameroon, caused by a ruptured century-old levee after prolonged heavy rainfall, resulted in over 30 deaths and significant property damage. Survivors Fabian Mebara and Yannick Tamgno Didero recounted their harrowing experiences, with Mebara losing all possessions and Didero losing most of his family. Officials from NOCC, including Patrick Forghab Mbomba and Joseph Amougou Armathe, attributed the disaster to deforestation and poor urban planning, noting that previous research had predicted such an event. The mudslide swept away homes and left many unaccounted for, highlighting the ongoing risk of similar disasters in the region.

Diplomatically Isolated Belarus Seeks Allies in Africa

10 Oct 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
Belarus, facing diplomatic isolation, is seeking to strengthen ties with African nations, exemplified by President Lukashenko's recent visit to Equatorial Guinea and Kenya. The cooperation focuses on technology transfer, agriculture, healthcare, and machinery. Experts suggest that while Belarus aims to expand its geopolitical influence, African nations should independently choose their partners based on their specific interests. The visit underscores a new scramble for African resources and highlights the continent's growing geopolitical significance.

Violence Escalates in Northern Mali Amid UN Troop Withdrawal

25 Sep 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
Mali's military junta has postponed the presidential elections initially scheduled for February 2024, citing disputes and security concerns. The decision comes amid escalating violence and the withdrawal of UN peacekeeping forces, raising fears of increased instability and the expansion of terror groups. Various stakeholders, including the U.S. ambassador to the UN and experts, express concerns over the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation. The article highlights the complex interplay of local and international forces, the challenges faced by the UN mission, and the broader implications for the Sahel region.

At Least 32 Villagers Massacred in Ethnic Attack in Cameroon

28 Jun 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
A group of about 100 armed secessionist fighters attacked a funeral gathering in the village of Bakinjaw, Cameroon, killing at least 32 villagers, including five Nigerians. The assailants set fire to the home of an elected representative and his brother's coffin, and engaged in a shootout with defense and security forces. The villagers retaliated, resulting in the death of four attackers and several injured. Government troops remain on high alert, and many villagers are missing since the June 25 incident. Human Rights Watch has reported ongoing abuses by separatist fighters and government forces in the Anglophone regions, including unlawful killings, torture, and attacks on education.

Could the Jihadis Dismantle the Sahelian State?

07 Jun 2023  |  allafrica.com
Burkina Faso is facing a severe threat from Salafi-jihadist groups, with increasing attacks and political instability. The country has experienced coups and a surge in terrorist activities, with the government controlling just over half of its territory. The Sahel region has become the epicenter of terrorism, with Burkina Faso and Mali accounting for a significant portion of terrorism deaths. Poor governance and the spread of Salafi Islam have contributed to the growth of terrorism. Despite increased drone strikes, Burkina Faso's counterinsurgency operations are limited by manpower shortages. Human rights violations by security forces and the failure of military interventions to address underlying issues have exacerbated the situation. The rise in anti-French sentiment and the potential involvement of external players like Russia's Wagner Group could further destabilize the region. Burkina Faso is now considered the world's most neglected crisis, with a significant portion of its population in need of aid.

Germany Seeks to Restore EU's Diplomatic and Trade Presence in Africa

12 May 2023  |  epochtimesviet.com
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has revived efforts to urgently rebuild the EU's waning diplomatic and trade presence in Africa amid growing influence from China and Russia in one of the world's fastest-growing regions. During his official visit to Ethiopia and Kenya from May 4 to 7, Scholz proposed the African Union's inclusion in the G20 and discussed economic cooperation and global challenges such as climate change. Critics have varied opinions on the visit, with some considering it too little, too late. Scholz's trip is seen as part of Europe's strategic re-engagement with Africa, countering the narrative of European disinterest. The visit also addressed debt reduction challenges and China's role in them, with Africa being a significant part of China's controversial Belt and Road Initiative. Scholz's visit highlighted the potential for Africa to leverage both Eastern and Western partnerships strategically.

Germany Seeks to Revive EU’s Diplomatic, Commercial Presence in Africa

11 May 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
Germany is actively working to strengthen the European Union's diplomatic and commercial presence in Africa. The country's efforts include engaging with African Union leaders to address issues such as the conflict in Sudan, economic cooperation, and global challenges like climate change. Germany's Chancellor Scholz visited Ethiopia and Kenya, discussing debt reduction, trade relations, and renewable energy. The article also touches on the strategic competition between the United States and China for global influence, with China being a primary lender to developing nations. Concerns are raised about Europe's economic dependencies on China, as exemplified by the controversial deal allowing Chinese state-owned company Cosco to purchase a stake in Hamburg's port terminals. The article highlights the need for Africa to strategically navigate international partnerships, leveraging them for its own needs, and the benefits of increased competition and options for infrastructure financing and development in Africa.

Sudanese Civilians Are ‘Biggest Losers’ Amid Escalating Hostilities

25 Apr 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
The escalating conflict in Sudan has left civilians as the primary victims, with widespread suffering due to closed markets, lack of emergency services, and ongoing violence. The Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) are locked in a power struggle, with both sides failing to uphold ceasefires. The conflict has resulted in nearly 500 deaths and over 4,000 injuries, exacerbating an already dire humanitarian situation. The international community is urged to impose targeted sanctions to bring the warring factions back to negotiations. Despite the turmoil, neither the SAF nor the RSF appears committed to a transition to civilian rule, leaving the Sudanese people as the biggest losers in this conflict.

The Underrated Role of Cameroonian Media in the Fight Against COVID-19

12 Apr 2023  |  www.gavi.org
The article discusses the critical role of Cameroonian media in combating the COVID-19 pandemic and addressing vaccine hesitancy. Since the first COVID-19 case in Cameroon, media outlets have been instrumental in disseminating information and sensitizing the public. Despite the national vaccination campaign starting in April 2021, only a small percentage of the population has been vaccinated. Local media, supported by organizations like UNESCO and International Media Support, have produced thousands of programs in local languages and engaged in community outreach. Journalists have received training on reporting the pandemic, and community radios have been highlighted as key in the sensitization campaign. The article also touches on the challenges faced by the media, such as access to information and scientific communication. The efforts of the media are seen as undervalued in the fight against COVID-19 in Cameroon.

The invasive weed that travelled the world

05 Apr 2023  |  www.bbc.com
The article discusses the invasive water weed Salvinia molesta, which has severely impacted the ecosystem and economy of Lake Ossa in Cameroon. The weed has smothered the lake, leading to a drastic reduction in fish populations and affecting local livelihoods. The African Marine Mammal Conservation Organisation (AMMCO) is working to combat the infestation. The article explores the potential of the Salvinia weevil, a beetle native to Brazil, as a biological control agent. The weevil has been successful in controlling Salvinia in other countries such as Australia and South Africa. The article highlights the challenges of manual and chemical removal of the weed and emphasizes the ecological and economic benefits of using the weevil. The local community is eager for a solution, and AMMCO is awaiting government authorization to release the weevils into Lake Ossa, with hopes of restoring the lake's ecosystem within a few years.

6000 Salvinia weevils are being cultivated in Cameroon to control fast-spreading aquatic weeds engulfing the country’s coastal waters.

05 Apr 2023  |  euronews
The article by Nalova Akua discusses the environmental crisis in Cameroon's coastal waters caused by invasive aquatic weeds, particularly Salvinia molesta, water lettuce, and water hyacinth. These weeds are threatening the aquatic ecosystems and the livelihoods of local communities by disrupting water flow and depleting oxygen levels, which affects fishing, navigation, and the survival of native species like the African manatee. The African Marine Mammal Conservation Organisation (AMMCO) and other groups are exploring biological control methods to combat these weeds, including the use of Salvinia weevils, which have been successful in other countries. The article highlights the urgency of the situation and the need for government authorization to release the weevils to prevent further ecological and economic damage.

Congo Rebels Accuse Government of Ceasefire Violations

29 Mar 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
Rebels in Congo accuse the government of using UN bases to attack their positions, violating the ceasefire. The conflict, fueled by ethnic and geopolitical tensions, has displaced millions and led to severe human rights abuses. Amnesty International and other organizations highlight the dire humanitarian situation, calling for international intervention. The conflict is deeply rooted in political and economic issues, particularly control over the region's rich mineral resources.

Suspicions Cloud Process to Prosecute Prominent Cameroonian Journalist’s Killers

29 Mar 2023  |  theepochtimes.com
Jean-Pierre Amougou Belinga, a Cameroonian media tycoon, has been charged with complicity in torture related to the murder of journalist Martinez Zogo, whose decomposed body was found on January 22, 2023, after being abducted five days earlier. Zogo was known for denouncing embezzlement of public funds. The case has raised suspicions about the transparency of the legal process, with international organizations calling for justice and transparency. Cameroon's communication minister criticized the media's portrayal of the case, while legal experts and family members seek a fair investigation. The case highlights the dangers faced by journalists in Cameroon, with calls for openness in the investigation amid a climate of fear for journalists in the country.

Inside the Insurgency in Northeastern Nigeria

23 Feb 2023  |  allAfrica.com
Rival Islamist factions Boko Haram and ISWAP are engaged in a brutal conflict in Northeastern Nigeria, with recent clashes resulting in significant casualties. The Multinational Joint Task Force has capitalized on this infighting, making gains against both groups. Boko Haram, founded by Muhammed Yusuf and later led by Abubakar Shekau until his death in 2021, has been associated with the Northern underclass's grievances. Despite territorial losses and leadership changes, both factions maintain a presence in the region, with ISWAP considered the stronger group. The conflict has resulted in over 350,000 deaths and millions displaced, with the MNJTF playing a key role in counter-insurgency efforts. However, challenges such as inadequate funding and equipment persist, and the Nigerian military has faced criticism for its handling of the insurgency. President Buhari claims territories have been reclaimed, but experts suggest the groups are far from defeated.

Popular Radio Journalist’s Brutal Murder Sparks Outcry in Cameroon

23 Jan 2023  |  www.theepochtimes.com
Martinez Zogo, a popular radio journalist in Cameroon, was brutally murdered, sparking widespread outcry and highlighting the dangers faced by journalists in the country. His death, marked by severe torture, has been condemned by various organizations, including Reporters Without Borders and the Cameroon Journalists’ Trade Union. Colleagues and family members mourn his loss, emphasizing his dedication to exposing societal ills. The incident underscores the perilous environment for media workers in Cameroon, with calls for justice and improved safety measures for journalists.

Cameroonian climate justice advocates’ high hopes for COP27

18 Oct 2022  |  www.fairplanet.org
In Bamunkumbit, Cameroon, the drying up of the Mbingmboh River has prompted Support Humanity Cameroon (SUHUCAM) to initiate a reforestation scheme with support from the Global Landscapes Forum. The project includes a solar-powered tree nursery aimed at restoring local forests and mitigating climate change. Cameroon's forests, part of the Congo Basin, face deforestation challenges, and local NGOs like Green Cameroon are raising awareness. The country has committed to reducing carbon emissions and reversing forest loss by 2030. SUHUCAM's coordinator, Sunday Geofrey, sees COP27 as an opportunity to highlight local actions and advocate for financial and technical support for smallholder farmers, grazers, and fishermen, emphasizing the urgency due to potential conflicts over scarce resources.

Hepatitis, the Hidden Epidemic in Cameroon

03 Oct 2022  |  gavi.org
Cameroon, with a population of 27 million, has high endemic rates of viral hepatitis, with 1.3% suffering from hepatitis C and 8.3% from hepatitis B. The health minister attributes the high prevalence to ignorance and risky practices. The country introduced the hepatitis B vaccine in 2005, leading to a prevalence of less than 1% in the vaccinated generation. The government is committed to prevention and treatment, including reducing medication costs and introducing a birth dose of the vaccine to prevent mother-to-child transmission.

Journalists Win Prestigious Award for Climate Change Reporting in Africa

09 Jun 2022  |  International Center for Journalists
The 2022 Michael Elliott Award for Excellence in African Storytelling has been awarded to journalists Nalova Akua and Khalid Bencherif for their exceptional reporting on the impacts of climate change in Africa. Akua's piece for BBC Future Planet highlighted the struggle against an invasive plant in Cameroon's Lake Ossa, while Bencherif's article for In These Times depicted the desertification and mass migration in his Moroccan hometown. The award, given by the International Center for Journalists in partnership with the ONE Campaign and the Elliott family, honors the late Michael Elliott, an editor and philanthropist. It celebrates emerging African journalists who contribute to societal well-being through storytelling. The winners will receive a cash prize and professional development opportunities at The Economist in London.

EU Loan Package Seeks to Counter China’s Reach in Africa

05 Mar 2022  |  theepochtimes.com
The European Union is competing with China to influence Africa's economic future, offering a substantial investment package aimed at fostering development and countering China's Belt & Road initiative. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has promised transformative results, while critics of China's approach argue it doesn't create enough jobs for Africans and leads to unsustainable debt. African leaders are aware of the risks and benefits of partnering with different global powers and are seeking to maximize benefits for their countries. The African Union Commission Chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat emphasizes the importance of diverse partnerships. Concerns have been raised about the transparency of Chinese projects and their long-term benefits for Africa.

Cameroon Grieves Children Killed In School Shooting

24 Dec 2021  |  www.theepochtimes.com
On November 24, 2021, unidentified gunmen attacked a state-run secondary school in Ekondo Titi, South West Cameroon, killing four students and a teacher, and wounding seven others. This region has been embroiled in conflict since 2016, with separatists seeking to form an independent state called 'Ambazonia.' Both the Cameroonian military and Ambazonia separatists deny responsibility for the attack. President Paul Biya condemned the incident, while experts like David Otto suggest that the complex nature of asymmetric warfare makes it difficult to ascertain the true perpetrators. The European Parliament has called for renewed peace talks, but positions remain polarized, with separatists demanding independence and the government maintaining the integrity of the state.

Shooting Deaths Roil Cameroon’s Breakaway Region

13 Nov 2021  |  theepochtimes.com
On November 13, 2021, at least 11 Cameroonian soldiers were killed by suspected Anglophone separatist militants in the North West Region. This followed the death of a 9-year-old pupil by police and a 5-year-old child by military in the same region, sparking protests. Tensions escalated in 2016 when the Francophone-led government imposed French-speaking officials in Anglophone regions. The conflict has seen civilian casualties and the proliferation of IEDs. Experts argue there is no military solution and call for Cameroonian-led resolution with international support.

Cameroon Reels From Fresh Islamist Attacks That Killed 13 Soldiers

24 Jul 2021  |  www.theepochtimes.com
Cameroon is grappling with renewed Islamist terrorist attacks in its northern region, resulting in the deaths of 13 soldiers and a civilian. The attacks, attributed to Boko Haram and possibly the Islamic State of West Africa, highlight the ongoing threat despite previous perceptions of the group's defeat. The Cameroonian army and defense ministry are reassessing their strategies to counter these threats, while experts criticize the effectiveness of the Multinational Joint Task Force. The article includes personal accounts from affected families and statements from military officials, emphasizing the need for a robust and adaptive response to the evolving terrorist tactics.

My articles published by The Epoch Times

As a bilingual, all-round journalist, Nalova has also reported in French.

Some of my articles on Gavi, the vaccine alliance

My stories published on African Arguments

Some of my articles published by Gavi, The Vaccines Alliance

How Baking Is Absorbing Jobless Cameroonian Youth

Ordeal Of Children Living With Disabilities

The Rich Lustre of Made in Cameroon shoes

Living with HIV: Testimony of a"Healthy" Patient

Occupational exposures faced in cookware manufacturing

Inside Cameroon's all-time favorite recreational Park.




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