Minkebe's people

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Baka pygmy children. Minkébé, Gabon
© Michel Gunther / WWF Canon
Approximately 90,000 people live in villages and towns along the rare public roads of the Minkebe region.

The main towns of the area are Oyem and Makokou with a population of about 25,000. The people are mainly of the Fang, Bakwele, and Bakota ethnic groups.

Baka and Bakola pygmies

There is a significant number of illegal, immigrant laborers from neighbouring countries and an estimate 600 Baka pygmies scattered across the northern part of Minkébé Forest with an unknown number of Bakola pygmies around the Mekambo Department.

West Africans traders, highly suspected to be involved in ivory trafficking operate most of the shops in the area's towns, villages and gold mining camps.

The people in the region carry out shifting cultivation (slash and burn), hunting, fishing, and small-scale commercial logging (‘family logging’).

Small scale gold mining camps are present in selected places in the forest. 
 / ©: Meg Gawler / WWF Canon
Portrait of child, Minkébé forest, Gabon.
© Meg Gawler / WWF Canon
 / ©: Michel Gunther / WWF Canon
Baka pygmies in Minkébé, Gabon
© Michel Gunther / WWF Canon

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