upportive of the concept of change, that, everything is constantly shifting, and becoming something other to what it was before, is the Common Law Lawyers’ and Teachers’ strike battle for the restoration of the English culture in Southern Cameroons. Until we renounce our wealth and fortune just like Heraclitus, then could we have plenty of time to reflect and appreciate the concept of change to the effect that, Change is the only thing that is inevitable in life. Everything changes and the history of Cameroon and Southern Cameroon in particular has changed dozen times since Heraclitus time. In a time like ours so clearly predominantly influenced by populists oriented views geared towards institutional- legal and infrastructural change, our leaders must be vigilant, thoughtful and more cautious with reactions of the governed propelled seemingly by the concept of change.
Change refers to a difference in a state of affairs/minds of the people at different points in time. Change is a consistent process. For instance, we can’t step into the river twice because the river is constantly changing. River Wouri isn’t the same river from moment to moment. When we step into the Wouri, we ‘step out of it again, when we step into it a second time, we step into a different water and thus a different river’.
Southern Cameroonians aren’t indifferent pertaining to the concept of change, and would never be the same again since injustice has become law and’ resistance a duty’ The co-existence of both the English Common Law and the Civil Law in West (Southern Cameroons) and East ( La Republique Du Cameroun) Cameroons respectively as appeared in the constitution, presupposes two distinct cultures and traditions- the English Common Law System and the French oriented Civil Law System.
It should be noted that, in between 1961 and 1984, we did witness an unprecedented and vicious change in Cameroon aimed at suppressing a people from their cultures and traditions (laws) which have been practiced/ observed for a very long period of time and developed through a system of precedent. Said change albeit without any referendum was never followed by any resistance whatsoever.
Exasperating and vexatious to note is the fact that, the vicious intent of La Republique Du Cameroon to erode or suppress the cultures and traditions of the people of Southern Cameroons dates far back in 1961 with the devastating harmonization of the Criminal Procedure Code, amongst others. It should be noted equally that, said adjectival piece of legislation came into force on the 1st January, 2007, after nearly thirty-two (32) years of research and huge financial sacrifices, cited as Law No. 2005 /007 of 27th July 2005 as the principal Code to guide and facilitate the institution of criminal proceedings in Cameroon. Meaning marginalization is an old story in Southern Cameroons while the present social unrest is consequently the manifestation of the concept of change and change. A change which we are bound to accept or be confronted with red lines- ‘the Arab Spring’.
Conclusively, in order to shun, evade/circumvent ‘the Arab Spring’ in Cameroon that would seemingly cause human and material damages, a meaningful and strong negotiation/dialogue predicated upon a WIN-WIN THEORY as opposed to WIN-LOSE becomes imperative and the ONLY solution to restrain further deaths and destruction of properties in Cameroon as a whole, for the concept of change and change moves around the ability to ‘fix and or destroy’. God bless Cameroon.
BY Barrister ATOH WALTER M. TCHEMI
MEMBER: HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION OF THE CAMEROON BAR ASSOCIATION
LEGAL CRITIC, RESEARCHER AND AUTHOR
FOUNDER AND HEAD of THE TIME LAW FIRM, KUMBA
C.E.O: PRO BONO GROUP.
TEL: (00237) 77 62 73 08