This week, the world caught glimpses of the sheer savagery of the army of la République du Cameroun against its own unarmed citizens. First, we saw the army’s barbaric handiwork in videos and images of massacred, unarmed citizens, then we saw a mass grave near Bolifamba (Mile 16), Buea, then we saw the unbelievable sight of Southern Cameroonian refugees in Nigeria for the first time in history. Then we witnessed the dehumanizing and degrading spectacle of armed soldiers forcing unarmed citizens to wallow in mud like pigs…God have mercy! The army of la République du Cameroun has never heard of human rights and human dignity! This is the same group of killers and torturers that the United States army has cooperation agreements with in the name of fighting terrorists! The fact is that these men have terrorized the Anglophone population of Cameroon! The commanders of these criminal should be tried for crimes against humanity, these soldiers are a disgrace to Africa.
Imagine this, the same week Paul Biya ordered the murderous army of la République du Cameroun to go on a rampage against unarmed civilians, Catalonia had an independence referendum. The Spanish government opposes it but hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets demanding independence. Not one single person…zilch, zero, toh moko (Bakweri) was killed! The Quebecois in Canada have their own province, their own flag (blue and white) and their own national anthem. They agitate for independence all the time. No one gets killed. Democracies respect human rights and have ways of solving problems without resorting to brutal repression like Biya’s France-Afrique dictatorship.
As Jesus Christ said, “those who go by the sword shall die by the sword.” History shows that Ahidjo went by the sword in the 1960s against so-called Bamileke and Bassa “maquisard.” In April 1984, Ahidjo’s men were slaughtered mercilessly and buried in a mass grave beside the road to Mbalmayo, after their failed coup attempt. Ahidjo’s bones are still buried in a pauper’s grave in Dakar, Senegal, while his people bid their time, waiting for an opportunity to take their revenge and bring Ahidjo’s bones back. History shows that killers and their victims often trade places. Today’s killers are tomorrow’s victims.
In the face of the criminal inaction of the perplexed, shaken, and dumbfounded Biya regime, Barrister Agbor-Balla Nkongho has stepped into the vacuum. In fact, he has been the most statesman-like individual in the country in the last few weeks. He has visited hospitals to console victims of the murderous army, gone to prisons to work for the release of those incarcerated without trial, and done the rounds of the media. In interview after interview, he has clearly and bravely stated his case for federalism (restoration of the two-state federation) and calls for national dialogue to solve the Anglophone problem. Mind you these are the very same views that got him imprisoned for more than eight months and tried in the kangaroo Yaoundé Military Tribunal. Despite efforts by Peter Essoka, Chairman of the National Communications Council to quash speech on federalism, that is now the trending topic in Cameroon. How things have changed….yet, one year later, there is no end in sight!
This week, Barrister Agbor Balla is visiting the UK. He stopped at the London offices of Amnesty International, the human rights organization that had campaigned for his release and that of his fellow prisoners. He thanked Amnesty for shining its light in the dark recesses of La République du Cameroon, where human rights are violated with impunity. That is a good gesture.
Barrister Agbor Balla also needs to travel to the headquarters of the InterContinental Hotel Group in Denham, Buckinghamshire, and hand them the letter of protest written by Anglophones in the Diaspora complaining about Paul Biya using their hotel as a base to mastermind the 1st October massacres in Southern Cameroon. While Agbor Balla is in Europe, he might want to travel to Switzerland and tell the government of Switzerland: “thanks for nothing,” for hosting Biya, the dictator who, from the territory of Switzerland, coordinated crimes against humanity in Southern Cameroon. I know the Swiss embassy will not give him a visa…