A man designated to succeed a sub -chief in Weh in the Northwest Region, has turned down the offer in order to defend his Christian beliefs and values, according to reports.
The man Hilary Fuh Cham is reportedly hiding as the village mounts pressure on him ,as the Wannangeh tradition requires ,to replace the late sub chief who ruled the village for many years and died in June 2006.
According to village tradition when the chief dies his first –born male child succeeds him. That is why Fuh Cham was designated as successor to the throne of his father.
But the supposed successor, who is a staunch Catholic Christian, has vowed that he cannot compromise his Christian values by becoming sub-chief of his village.
His refusal is rooted in the fact that certain traditional rites performed while enthroning a sub chief are very unchristian and unbiblical. For example, several mysterious deaths are said to precede the enthronement of a new chief, which many believe could be a sacrifice to ancestors.
Fuh Cham is quoted to have said that as a Christian he cannot witness such simply because he wants to be chief. “A Christian, the Bible stresses, must not kill in any form”, he is quoted to have fumed to some village notables who tried to persuade him accept the throne.
Fearing for his life following threats from the Village Traditional Council, Fuh Cham is said to have approached a Catholic Priest, who advised him to seek refuge in the Catholic Mission.
Inspired by the priest’s advice, Fuh Cham abandoned his job in Buea and escaped to Tombel where a priest there is his kinsman. But it is said that Tombel was just a temporary abode for him
The unchristian rites are not only performed to the chief -to -be, but also to his family, reason why Fuh Cham’s wife and children are reportedly also at large. Reports say his in- laws have asked their daughter to divorce him since he has abandoned his village, causing his relations to be subjected to shame, and all kinds of misfortune.
Food shortage, high death rate and many misfortunes in the village are attributed to the fact that sacrifices have not been offered to the gods since the late sub chief died .
Mr. Fuh Cham had long abandoned his job in Buea .Afraid to work in any part of the country he is rumored to have fled the country with his family several years ago. But some people have claimed they recently spotted him in Yaoundé while others claimed they saw him in Douala.
First Published in The Recorder Newspaper,Cameroon,of May 23,2012