Geography Situated on the west coast of Africa, Cameroon is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Guinea, to the northwest by Nigeria, to the northeast by Chad (with Lake Chad at its northern tip), to the east by the Central African Republic and to the south by Congo, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea. The far north of the country is a semi-desert broadening into the vast Maroua Plain, with game reserves and mineral deposits. This is bordered to the west by the lush Mandara Mountains. The Benue River rises here and flows westwards into the Niger. The country to the northwest is very beautiful; volcanic peaks covered by bamboo forest rise to over 2,000m (6,500ft), with waterfalls and villages scattered over the lower slopes. Further to the south and west are savannah uplands, while dense forest covers the east and south. The coastal strip is tropical and cultivated. Cameroon derives its name from the 15th-century Portuguese sailor Fernando Po’s description of the River Wouri Rio dos Cameroes .
Religion The majority of the population hold Christian (mainly Roman Catholic) or traditional animist beliefs. The sizeable remainder are followers of Islam.
GoverMent Republic. Gained independence in 1961 Head Of State President Paul Biya since 1982. Government Prime Minister Ephraim Inoni since 2004.
Language Frananglais is a mixture of French, English, and Creole, and it's increasingly becoming a language of communication in Cameroon , according to a news report on the BBC . The country's official languages are French and English, but there are also some 250 indigenous languages, so it ought not to be a surprise that a mixed language would develop. Head of the French department of the Linguistic Centre in Douala, Francoise Endwin, is quoted as saying Frananglais "developed because French and English have a lot of similarities, despite their different syntax. To cut corners, schoolchildren just mix both". Many musicians are also using it, but it won't be recognised as "a language on its own" until it's codified. Read more about Frananglais in Cameroon.
Wildlife Cameroon has a number of national parks created with the intention of protecting wildlife and flora. In many parts of Africa it is said the tourists outnumber the animals. Not so in Cameroon, where visitors are limited, and the parks are pristine.
History In the early 19th century there is considerable activity in Cameroon by British and American missionaries, but a German connection begins only when the Woermann Company of Hamburg builds a warehouse in 1868 on the estuary of the Wouri river. Other German traders follow, in sufficient numbers to send requests home for the appointment of a consul.
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