How was MBoscuda formed?

In the 1980s a number of different groups started up across Cameroon, but principally in the North West, to consider how the Mbororo people could work together to improve the lives of their communities.  

By 1987 this lead to establishment of three groups by Mbororo people focused on the development of their communities.

From the beginning grassroots involvement from the community was key to their success.  In order to secure more support an open meeting was called without a set agenda to discuss the issues that people thought were important for the MBororo people and needed to be addressed.  Members of the three existing groups were invited as well as anyone else interested in the formation of an Mbororo Organisation.  

This first meeting was held in 1992 in Yaounde, the issues addressed were:

• What do we preserve of our past and what do we change to adapt it to our constantly changing environment?

• What are the most important issues affecting the Mbororo community?  

• How to challenge the practices that have put the Mbororo people at a disadvantage without causing conflict with those who want to maintain the status quo?

As the community did not have a history of communal organisation, few educated people to work for the organisation and no training in group management it was difficult for this new organisation to find ways to stand up to more powerful members of society who sought to repress them.

However from the Yaounde Constitutive Assembly a number of key decisions were made after two days of intensive debate.  The decided to be called Mbororo not Fulani and stressed the importance of their relationship with cattle and cattle herding tradition and that it was key to their identity as a people.  

On 31 May 1992 – the assembly of 200 Ardobe (Mbororo Community Leaders) including men, women and young people declared their commitment to the MBoscuda initiative.


Mbororo culture


The main socio-cultural code for Mbororo–Fulani group is known as pulaaku, it is believed by the Mbororo Fulani to be specific to their pastoral group and provides a moral framework and code of conduct.

It is based on their history of Nomadic pastoralism and good animal husbandry and includes duties to elders and wives and arrangement of marriages.

The four major points of Pulaaku are:

• Munyal – Fortitude in adversity and ability to accept misfortune

• Hakkiilo – Common Sense and Manners

• Semteende - Reserve and modesty in personal relations 

• Neddaku - Dignity 

This code can sometimes be seen as a factor that unifies the Mbororo-Fulani but that causes tensions with other groups.  The work of MBoscuda seeks to preserve this culture whilst working and interacting with other groups in Cameroon society and increasing the awareness of the MBoscuda people.



MBoscuda stands for the Mbororo Social and Cultural Association.  Since 1987 it has been helping people in the northwest region of Cameroon find long term solutions to issues of inequality and poverty.

Who are the Mbororo

There are a number of different theories about the origin and identity of the Mbororo-Fulani.  They are the largest nomadic group in the world and play a crucial economic role – ‘Their herds of cattle and sheep are the major source of meat for hundreds of villagers, town and cities from.. the shore of lake Chad to the Atlantic coast of Senegal’.

The Mbororo-Fulani arrived in Cameroon in the early eighteenth century, where they migrated and settled in eight of Cameroon’s ten provinces.

The Mbororo share characteristics with other pastoralist Fulani tribal groups including the Fulfulde language, Haematic ‘racial’ origin, Islamic faith and a cultural code known as ‘Pulaaku’.  However their critical difference to other tribes is their pastoral livelihood.

The Mbororo-Fulani can be divided into three major ethnic groups identified by the colour of their cattle, style of decoration of their bowls and migratory movements.

In Cameroon Mbororo are found all over the national territory under four Lamidats (the highest authority amongst the traditional institutions) under these are found community leaders called Ardos.

Historically the number of cattle that a man owned was an index of his wealth and importance. The women were responsible for milking and they carried the milk, with pats of butter floating in it, in large shallow gourds to local markets, where it was exchanged for food grown by cultivators.  There biggest expense was on the annual cattle tax paid to the local councils.

Historically the culture of the Mbororo people has not been understood leading to conflict with other groups and a lack of security of land tenure and technical skills has meant that they have not been able to settle and invest in their environment.  MBoscuda are working with other community groups, NGOs, local and national government to improve the relationships with the wider community and to improve their rights.


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MBOSCUDA Building, Old Town, P.O Box 221,
NWR, Cameroon Bamenda

Phone: 233 361 406
            677 657 186
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