The World Bank-backed Chad-Cameroon pipeline, that brings oil from landlocked Chad along a 1,100km-pipeline to Cameroon, has run into trouble after springing a leak.

Local Cameroonian NGOs, the Centre for Environment and Development (CED) and the Network for the Fight Against Hunger, have alleged that there was a delay in detecting the leak and the Cameroon Oil Transportation Company (COTCO) waited five days to inform the public about the problem.

The NGOs argue that the accident at the Kome-Kribi terminal 11km offshore exposed weaknesses in Cameroon’s ability to manage such a crisis and that authorities had yet to devise an emergency plan of action in the event of a major spill.

“If there had been an accident affecting the coasts the impact would have been catastrophic because of confusion among authorities and communities who do not seem to know which avenue to pursue in case of a petroleum accident,” said Samuel Nguiffo, of CED, in a statement.

You can find out more from the Center for Environment and Development in Cameroon here.