KUMBO, North West Region of Cameroon

by Tangwing pius

KUMBO

This is the second-largest city in the North West Region of Cameroon. It is the capital of Bui Division. It is sometimes referred to as Kimbo.

It is the capital city of the Nso Kingdom of the Nso people. Kumbo lies about 2000m above sea level and situated approximately 110 km away from the regional head quarters, Bamenda.

Kumbo has a population of about 80,212 according to the 2005 population Census.

Kumbo is split into three distinctive hilly settlements: Tobin, Mbveh, and Squares. The town is known for activities such as horse racing that usually take place at the Tobin Stadium, traditional medicine and also for the Nso Palace, the market and two renowned hospitals, the Shisong Hospital and the Banso Baptist Hospital (BBH).

The main language is Lamnso but others like Pidgin, English, French, Oku, Djottin, Fulfulde, and Hausa are spoken in kumbo.

The first foreign settlers of Kumbo were the German Missionaries of the Sacred Heart who arrived this area in 1912 and established their mission in 1913.

The most attractive touristic thing in Kumbo is the Musa Heritage Gallery museum- "The Grass fields Museum". It was created in 1996, in memory of Cameroonian artists Daniel Kanjo Musa and his elder son, John. Inside the museum, wood sculptures created by these departed artists are preserved. Visitors can admire carved masks, wood statues and other objects made by the Musas between 1970 and 2000.

Other objects collected from the grass-fields, ( traditional musical instruments, hunting gadgets, metal works, bamboo objects and pottery) are also found in the museum.

The Seat of the paramount Fon of the Nso people (Sehm Mbinglo I), is the heart of Kumbo social and cultural life.

It consists of several traditional buildings decorated with wood carvings, around two courtyards where the Fon uses to sit and receive advisers and visitors.

Also found in Kumbo is the historic Cathedral Built in the 1950s, entirely from stones. The Cathedral is located at the top of the square hill, dominating the town's landscape. It is the seat of the Bishop of the Kumbo Diocese.

There is a famous annual horse race which takes place at the Tobin Municipal Stadium organised by the Ministry of Youths Affairs mostly carried out by the Mbororos of the area.

The Mbve market is a renowned main market in Kumbo. Traders in this market sell products from the locality, other parts of Cameroon, Nigeria and other parts of Africa.

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