Abducted Cameroonian Official Regains Freedom, Says Governor

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The regional governor in Cameroon has confirmed that a local administrator who was kidnapped by suspected separatists in Cameroon’s conflict-hit North-West region has regained his freedom.

Nicholas Nkongho Manchang and his aides were ambushed on Tuesday in a village in Ndu, as they headed for the installation ceremony of another senior administrator.

Governor Adolphe Lele l’Afrique said on Wednesday that the government official was “freed” in a “swift military operation” ordered by President Paul Biya.

But in a video making the rounds on social media, Mr Nkongho can be heard saying he escaped captivity and trekked for several hours. The other members of his convoy are still being held captive.

Cameroon’s two Anglophone regions, the North-West and South-West, have been mired in conflict since 2017, as fighting continues between government forces and separatists seeking a breakaway state.

Kidnapping of government officials and civilians by separatists is common, with rights groups also faulting Cameroon’s security forces for human rights abuses.