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MTN Foundation Assuages Water Problems In Ekoko, Meye 

By Leocadia Bongben

The MTN Foundation, in line with its social responsibility engagement, has lightened the burden of the population of Ekoko and Meye in the Nyong and Mfoumou Divisions of the Centre Region, by offering them boreholes.
The wells, constructed within the framework of a partnership agreement between MTN Foundation and St. Martin Foundation, under the Otele Portable Water Project, PEP Otele, were officially handed over to the two villages recently.
“Before the construction of these hand pump wells, we used to climb hills and trek for several kilometres just to fetch water from a stream. Today, I am very happy to fetch water beside my house,” Regine Mengue, a native of Ekoko said.
Felicite Eyenga, President of the Women’s Association Network of Mengang District, the brain behind the construction of the wells in Ekoko and Meye, said that the provision of the boreholes has greatly changed the lives of the women.
“As a cassava production basin, with 20,000 tons of cassava products per year, cassava will now be processed under the best hygienic conditions, unlike before when cassava was soaked in the stream where dishes and clothes were washed.”
The hygienic conditions of the women, the President said, will also improve because they can come back from their farms late and still fetch water beside their houses to bathe, unlike before when they were forced to wash only parts of their bodies because of lack of water and the long distance they had to cover just to fetch the life-serving liquid.

Water-borne diseases, Eyenga remarked, would greatly reduce with less people going to the hospital for diarrhoea, stomach ache and intestinal worms, due to the good water source.
The Executive Secretary of MTN Foundation, Jean-Michel Akam, stated that water in Mengang District “is another life”, as the proximity of potable water would greatly improve health and contribute to an increase in agricultural productivity.
He urged the population to ensure a better management of the wells as a condition for the extension of water projects to other villages.

MTN, through the Foundation, intervenes in the domains of education, health, environment and rural development and access to potable water for the population.
Thanks to the partnership with St. Martin Otele Potable Water Project, MTN Foundation has, since 2011, constructed 20 boreholes in the Centre, Littoral and South Regions of Cameroon and has, since 2005, provided water to about 100,000 people in rural communities, which has greatly impacted the lives of these people.

Taking into consideration that only 40 percent of the Cameroonian population has access to potable water; the Foundation is contributing its quota to increase access to water supply.
The President of the Well Management Committee of Ekoko, Missang Cuinegonde, assured the two Foundations that the population would take care of the wells.

“Every household would pay FCFA 200 for maintenance,” he said.
According to the representative of PEP Otele, David Kambi, if the population manages their well containing 6,000 litres of water properly, they would benefit from free maintenance.
The MTN Foundation delegation to Mengang was received and accompanied by the Divisional Officer, Charles Kamga.

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