Tears and wailing filled the hearts of inhabitants of Simbock neighbourhood in Yaounde on Tuesday November 13, 2012. A young lady whose names were got as Armelle Tongmo, 11, a Sixième (Form One) student of Government Bilingual High School, Banglong-Simbock, drowned in River Mefou that flows across the locality.
Eyewitnesses say Armelle Tongmo and three of her friends were returning from school on Tuesday afternoon when they all decided to go to the river for a swim. According to the reports, three of the girls dived into the water to swim but the fourth noticed that the three were carried by the water current into a tunnel in the river. She then screamed and called for help from nearby residents.
Two boys, Kevin Yongshi, 17, and Djoho Didis Fernand, 28, rushed to their rescue but they could only save two of the three girls. "We tried saving two first but by the time we came for the third girl, she was already carried away by the current," Kevin told Cameroon Tribune.
Armelle's mother, Veronique Kwayep, wailed uncontrollably by the riverside. She could barely give the names of her missing child, calling for immediate action to find her. The father, Theophile Tchema, could not say a word as he wept alongside the wife, hoping that his daughter will be found. Efforts by the Fire Brigade, the police and local rescue men to find the body of the girl, were in vain.