Cameroonian transport workers strike in protest of gas price, 2008

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Time Period:  
25 February
26 February
Location and Goals
Location City/State/Province: 
To secure a reduction in fuel costs for the urban transport union workers.

On 25 February 2008, Cameroonian workers in the Syndicate of Transportation and the Urban Transportation Union formally began a strike to reduce the cost of gasoline. On the morning of the 25th, taxi drivers, bus operators, and affiliated workers took to the streets to march in protest. Their strike also caused a standstill in transportation throughout the capital of Yaoundé.

While the workers were nonviolent in their protests, other people, including large numbers of disgruntled youths protesting for better economic and employment opportunities, turned to violence. Many in the crowd began to fight with police who were out on the street, loot various stores, and light cars and buildings on fire. However, many of the violent members of the crowd were not affiliated with the transportation strike. Nonetheless, the Cameroonian military was called and suppressed the riots by firing into the crowds. Police responded by arresting many demonstrators.

The following day, the government voted to reduce the price of gasoline by six francs CFA per liter. The Syndicate of Transportation and the Urban Transportation Union called off the strike that evening.

The strikers felt they were well compensated for their strike, ending on the second day.

Research Notes
Name of researcher, and date dd/mm/yyyy: 
John Pontillo, 03/03/2013