IC Magazine
Indigenous Peoples Archive - Bakola



The Bakola, traditionally hunter-gatherers, are one of three main Indigenous Peoples in Cameroon, along with the Baka in the East and the Bedjang in the Nditam region. Now settled in Kribi, the Bakola live in several small encampments along the main road linking Lolodorf, Bipindi and Kribi. [1]

There are a number of inter-ethnic relationships in Cameroon. Most notably, Bantu cultivators and the Bakola have maintained a close relationship for centuries. This has led both the Bakola and Bantu to share the same perceptions of the forests, and develop a rich biological, linguistic and cultural interconnection.

The Bakola themselves speak a Bantu language. Estimations of the population of the speakers of Bakola vary from 2,000 to 5,000. [2]

The Forest has itself maintained a pivotal position in the relationship between the Bakola and other Bantu. However, they have "helplessly witnessed the exploitation of 'their' forest by the State and logging companies (authorized or otherwise), which has degraded their forest environment. The large-scale exploitation of the forest ecosystem and the absence of its sustainable management plan have had adverse consequences to the life of the people living in it." [4]

1. Food Consumption In Three Forest Populations Of The Southern Coastal Area Of Cameroon: Yassa – Mvae – Bakola
2. Bakola documentation project
3. The Relationship Between The Bakola And The Bantu Peoples Of The Coastal Regions Of Cameroon And Their Perception Of Commercial Forest Exploitation

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A publication of the Center for World Indigenous Studies (cwis.org).