There is reverberating cry from tenants/students in Buea, South West Region, as landlords in the town have suddenly united in an exorbitant increase in rents to be paid.
In the student-dominated area of Molyko, many landlords are now forcing resistant old tenants out of their houses in order to accommodate new ones.
With the recent increment in rents, self-contained apartments in Buea have become a luxury, with the cheapest room and parlor now costing between 50,000frs – 100,000frs per month.
Affected students say landlords have given no clarification for the sudden increase in the rents.
“What I have been told is to pack and leave if I cannot meet up with the new cost of my room,” laments an affected student.
Newcomers to Buea say the cost of the housing situation in Buea at the moment has probably been exacerbated by an influx of internally displaced students into the town given the worsening situations of the anglophone crisis in neighboring villages.
“I asked for a one-room house in Buea and I was asked to pay 45,000frs per month. I was thinking of negotiating it down to 40,000frs so that I could pair with someone, but was rather told that as a pair, we would be expected to pay 55,000frs monthly, of which the amount can only be accepted to be paid annually and not on a monthly basis.”
The population of Buea, and the students of Molyko most especially, call on the authorities to intervene in this situation.
“There is a need for intervention into this matter… Is it that education will now be for the rich only? Normally an average person cannot afford to pay for rents in Buea, what would it look like now?” Cries out another affected student.
“The local authorities should be able to protect the vulnerable population from exploitation,” he adds.