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Smuggler Chasing Soldiers Feared Drowned In Limbe 

 By Francis Tim Mbom

Two soldiers attached to the Naval Base unit in Limbe, Southwest Region are feared to have died at sea on the night of October 19, when their flying boat apparently capsized during a surveillance mission.
As at 1:45 pm on Tuesday, October 21, a security officer informed The Post that a search and rescue mission coordinated by Colonel Clement Fru Fon, Commander of the Limbe Naval Base, had been on, since Monday, when the Naval Base was informed. 
“But up till now, their bodies have not been found,” our informant said.
The Post gathered that the duo: Sergeant Pascal Yumeni and Corporal Wiriwu Lobek, had taken a flying boat that Sunday night in the company of one Tebo, retired Gendarmerie Major and another Beninois civilian and headed out to sea. The Post also learnt that, since Cameroon closed her maritime borders with neighbouring Nigeria, security operatives, have had to carry out surveillance missions in the high seas to ensure that Government decision is respected. This has meant stopping all boats from Nigeria from entering Cameroon or, at worse, getting to the shores. However, security services have been complaining that businessmen have been taking advantage of the wide and porous borders to sneak in with their goods, especially at night.
The Post further gathered that Yumeni, his colleague, the retired gendarmerie officer and the Beninois are said to have sighted an approaching boat on the high sea that Sunday night. They, then, set out to intercept the vessel, which is suspected to have been carrying goods, presumably from Nigeria. It is believed that the boat wanted to use the cover of darkness to sneak to the shore at Mabeta. So, Yumeni and his team decided to pursue the in-coming vessel. 
The on-coming boatmen, having sensed danger, apparently decided to be switching the boat engine, on and off, as it approached the shore, in a desperate bid to avert detection and possible interception. 
The military boat is reported to have come face to face with the vessel. Our sources were of the opinion that the military men might have gotten into a scuffle with the boatmen and that  the suspect smugglers could have roused the waves as by way of manoeuvring, such that the smaller vessel carrying the soldiers overturned, tossing all its four occupants into the sea.
The retired Gendarme and the Beninois are reported to have swum back to shore, through the assistance of a fisherman who allegedly helped, leaving Yumeni and Wiruwu who could not swim to their fate. 
As at Tuesday, October 21, the marines were still scouring the seas off the coast of Mabeta, Limbe III, in search of the bodies of Yumeni and his colleague. Yumeni joined the military in 2006.
Meantime, worries are being raised why a retired gendarmerie officer was assigned on an official mission. Others suspect the ill-fated sea outing might not have been ordered or sanctioned by the authorities of the Limbe Naval Base. 

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