Tuesday, September 29, 2015

SCNC, Biya Regime at odds over self-rule inclination

By Peter Kumbang.                                                                   
The Minority English-speaking communities of Cameroon, fed-up with their marginalization, for decades by the Francophone-dominated administration, convened an All-Anglophone Conference (ACC1) in April 1993 in Buea.
    The historic conference examined the marginalization of Anglophones and issued a statement saying no to all the wrongs Francophones were doing to Anglophones that contradicted the spirit of reunification, which was equality in status.
    The ACC would in 1994 be transformed into the Southern Cameroons National Council (SCNC), with the goal of   restoring the Independence of Southern Cameroons, which had gained its independence on October 1, 1961 by joining La Repulique du Cameroun, to form what is today known as the Republic of Cameroon.
     But the Biya government described the SCNC as an illegal/ terrorist group, whereas its devotees saw it as a liberator, at long last.
Since its emergence, adherents of the SCNC have been molested, persecuted, prosecuted and jailed by the Biya regime, which accuses them of trying to divide what they call “one and indivisible Cameroon.”
     To contain any SCNC meetings, security operatives were on alert for any hint as to where the pressure group members were holding secret meetings as the activists planned to celebrate the 54th anniversary of the independence of Southern Cameroons. Many suspects such as Abga Felix and kitum Wanji had earlier been rounded up by police and whisked away, according to reports.
     SCNC activist Arrey Obi Divine, a Yaoundé resident on September 25, 2015 was reportedly identified in a transport bus at a Buea police control point with SCNC gadgets such as flyers, flags and t-shirts. He was detained for further investigation.
Reports say it was not the first time Arrey had been detained for his links with the SCNC.
    Many activists who have reportedly been manhandled by security operatives have since fled Cameroon.
Come to think of radical SCNC activists such as Ebenezer Akwanga and Ayaba Cho Lucas who for many years now live but abroad for safety reasons.
    Political pundits wonder why the non-violent SCNC,whose motto is the Force of Argument and not the Argument of Force is likened by the Government as a terrorist band.


Monday, September 28, 2015

United Support For Peace Urges Cameroonians To Support Biya's War Against Boko Haram

Special Message from 'United Support for Peace' (NGO) to the Youth of Cameroon 

Fellow youth of Cameroon, October 1st, 2015 the nation will be celebrating Unification Day to mark the anniversary of British Southern Cameroons' independence from the United Kingdom and unification with French Cameroun. But these celebrations will not be the same as previous ones because the unity and independence of Cameroon are under attack by extremist elements. 
Dr. David Makongo
On behalf therefore, of USP and in my personal name, I wish you all Cameroonian youth happy celebrations inspired by patriotism and a spirit of national unity to overcome adversity.
         Let me recall that in the last one year, Cameroon’s way of life and Cameroon’s peace and stability enjoyed and envied by everyone under the steady leadership of President Paul Biya have come under vicious attacks in a series of deliberate and deadly terrorist acts. The victims are old men and young women, young boys and old women, families and friends, hawkers and cattle farmers, foreigners, civilians and soldiers. Hundreds of lives are being ended by barbaric, despicable acts of terror.
       The enemy in this war is making use of the youth ranging from those who can carry guns and bullets to those who can conduct suicide bombings and try to justify it on unemployment and underdevelopment. No. In a civilized society like Cameroon, there can be no justification for the beheadings. There can be no justification for ending the lives of teenage boys and girls in suicide bombings. There can be no justification for raping women.  This is not the cure for unemployment and underdevelopment. It is the curse for idleness and laziness.    
       Hate him or like him, this war is not against President Biya whose primary responsibility as President is to keep Cameroon safe. This is a war against freedom from fear and freedom of movement. This war is against civilization and all the people of Cameroon. It is therefore, irresponsible that at the most trying times in the history of this nation some Cameroonians instead of organizing public parades in support of the young men and women putting their lives on the line to keep everyone safe, they have gone so low as to choose to parade placards on foreign capital cities inviting and inciting foreign nations to help them remove President Biya from power. You don’t build a glass house and aim stones. There is nothing bad with Cameroon that cannot be fixed with what is good with Cameroon.
       In the midst of this war, the enthusiasm and imagination, the courage and support of the youth is very vital for the nation right now and for everyone having relatives or business ties in the country. USP is therefore, calling on the youth of Cameroon where ever you may be, at home or abroad to celebrate reunification day with a sense of purpose and a spirit of patriotism.
       This is the moment when the Cameroonian youth living within or beyond the shores of the fatherland must rededicate yourselves to our shared commitments to Cameroon as agents of peace and national integration and rededicate yourselves to our shared commitments as ambassadors of global integration to overcome terrorism. For the mayhem terrorist inflict when they strike knows no boundaries between Christians and Muslims, boys and girl, men or women, black or white.  
      This is the moment when the Cameroonian youth must unite strongly behind the President of the Republic, Paul Biya and our brave men and women in uniform to defend, protect and preserve peace and stability in Cameroon.
This is the moment that must crown the youth of Cameroon with a spirit of national unity, grant every Cameroonians child the courage, the faith and the vision to give the best that is in him or her in order to overcome fear and violence in Cameroon.
     This is the moment that the Cameroon youth must come together, Christians and Muslims alike and bow down in prayers for all those who grieve and for our falling soldier and the young boys and girls whose world has been ended and for all whose sense of peace, safety and security has been threatened. Let them be comforted by a power even higher than that of our voices of unity and our weapons of defense spoken in the words of Psalm 23: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for you are with me.
     I wish you all Cameroonian youth happy celebrations marking reunification, inspired by a spirit of national unity and patriotism to overcome adversity.

                    Done in USA this September 26, 2015

Signed: Dr. David Makongo (Founder & President, United Support for Peace NGO)

Editor's Note: Dr. David Makongo is a Cameroonian resident in the USA. Dr.Makongo is an Expert Negotiator,and mining/ petroleum international lawyer.Before leaving for the USA many years ago,he was a noted member of the ruling CPDM.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

OPINION: With Blatter under investigation, can FIFA find a leader untainted by its corruption scandal ?

It felt inevitable but still comes as a bit of a surprise: Swiss authorities announced they have started a criminal investigation into actions by Sepp Blatter, the embattled, and soon-to-be-former, head of FIFA, international soccer’s governing body.
For those of you who don’t follow soccer, this is a big deal.

In May, the U.S Justice Department announced the indictments of nine international soccer executives and five sports marketing and broadcasting figures in an alleged 25-year, $150-million racketeering and bribery scheme involving staging and broadcasting games and tournaments, including the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Investigators have already wrestled guilty pleas from four other men and two sports-marketing businesses; they apparently have been cooperating with investigators.

Blatter has maintained that he was involved in nothing illicit and said he would try to root out the corruption in the ranks below him. Granting him the presumption of innocence, he still was the guy in charge. As a mark of the corruption at the core of FIFA, Blatter was reelected to a fifth term as FIFA president even after the indictments of the lower-level officials, and amid a swirl of speculation about impropriety in awarding the 2018 World Cup games to Russia and the 2022 World Cup games to tiny Qatar (which had no infrastructure nor a significant soccer culture)

 The new investigation targeting Blatter involves “suspicion of criminal mismanagement as well as -- alternatively -- on suspicion of misappropriation,” according to Swiss Atty. Gen. Michael Lauber:
“On the one hand, the [office of the attorney general] suspects that on 12 September 2005 Mr. Joseph [Sepp] Blatter has signed a contract with the Caribbean Football Union (with Jack Warner as the President at this time); this contract was unfavorable for FIFA. On the other hand, there is as suspicion that, in the implementation of this agreement, Joseph Blatter also violated his fiduciary duties and acted against the interest of FIFA and/or FIFA Marketing & TV AG.
“Additionally, Mr. Joseph Blatter is suspected of a disloyal payment of [$2 million] to Michel Platini, President of Union of European Football Associations (UEFA), at the expense of FIFA, which was allegedly made for work performed between January 1999 and June 2002; this payment was executed in February 2011.”

The mention of Platini is interesting as well. A former player and coach, Platini is running to succeed Blatter as FIFA president, and is considered the institutional favorite. Under FIFA’s election rules, candidates have until Oct. 26 to gather the support of at least five of FIFA’s 209 member nations to qualify.
Whether FIFA would opt for someone touched by this expanding scandal is the big question. It reelected Blatter after the initial indictments and as the investigatory clouds were forming over him, so there’s a history of turning a deaf ear to public outrage over the conduct of top-level FIFA officials.
But member nations electing someone involved with, or under, an active investigation is another matter. To do so would suggest the corruption runs too deep to be eradicated. But to look elsewhere for an untainted new president might signal a serious intent to clean up the internal mess.

 Follow Scott Martelle on Twitter @smartelle

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Jean Marc-Bikoko and Republican Politics

By Tazoacha Asonganyi in Yaounde.

Many countries have their “Democracy Day”- a day that most symbolizes the advancement of democracy in the country. Nigeria for example established May 29 as a public holiday to mark Democracy Day - the day the country returned to civilian rule by the swearing in of Olusegun Obasanjo as the first civilian president after a long period of military rule. In Canada, there is Democracy Day to celebrate Canadian democracy by encouraging participation and education. An International Day of Democracy was established in 2007 by the United Nations General Assembly to be celebrated each year on September 15.

And so on September 15, 2015 Jean-Marc Bikoko and some other civil society actors organized a colloquium at the Yaounde Sports Center on governance and democratic alternance in Cameroon. During the meeting, they were brutalized by security forces, arrested and locked up.

It was Margaret Thatcher who famously declared that there is no such thing as “society” because only families and individuals who ought to be taking care of themselves are found there!

Society is the conglomeration of the people of a community, a country. It is where social activities of the democratic polity are carried out.

The power exercised in a country is produced from within society. It is produced through the interactions of political, communicative, and economic activities. It is such activities that lead society to discover the form towards which it tends. The power exercised in a country draws the resources for its own actions from the movement of society. The creation of awareness, of political consciousness, of receptivity, of citizenship depends on such activities in society. Those in society with heightened awareness, consciousness, and receptivity become “civil” (well bred, courteous, polite, obliging, etc.) society. Civil society carves out itself to become the voice, eyes and ears of society, and to provide the people with continuing education and advocacy. The actions of society generate the political issues on which the politics of government is based.

A Republic as appropriated by Cameroon is a constitutional form that guarantees that the public (society’s) political forum remains always open. It is the political framework that permits and legitimates the action of society upon itself. Republican politics implies the presence of an open space for self-critique; a space where the tensions that emerge due to activities in society crystallize into political problems that cry out for solutions. Such problems and their solutions ensure that the citizens feel themselves part of the collective project of nation building.

In principle, the politics that provide solutions to the political problems that crystallize in society are guided by the state. The state is the Institution created by society to rule society. A government runs the state in trust for society (the people) to guide its political actions. Classical thought since antiquity has warned that this set-up opposes permanently the freedom of society to the power of the state. Power and freedom always get locked up in perpetual confrontation; power seeking always to expand at the expense, and with the complicity of freedom. This is why in order for activities in society to be democratic its political structure – the state - should also be democratized. That can only happen when society exercises power that it uses to invent, nourish and constrain political power. The power of society is based on the continuing education that is generated by its activities.

Unfortunately, the Cameroon state has refused to democratize. After taking power by the force of arms in 1960, Ahmadou Ahidjo signed an ordinance relating to subversive activities which was a sort of warning to the Cameroon society that if you publish or spread any information about me or my government or my henchmen which is true or false but that embarrasses me, my government or my henchmen, you are guilty and will be punished. The track of the Ahidjo regime that lasted until 1982 is littered by victims of this ordinance.

The advent of Paul Biya in 1982 changed nothing. He used the ordinance until 1990 when he repealed it (law no 9/046 of 1990) but surreptitiously transferred the contents to the penal code (law no. 90/061 of 1990). And so the recent brutalization of Jean-Marc Bikoko and other society actors in 2015 is a replica of the arrest of Yondo Black and other actors in 1990, under the terms of that warning! The so-called Rights and Freedoms Laws of 1990 were only weapons to reinforce and execute the “warning.”

The implication of all this is that the Cameroon state has carved a place for its “Head” that is beyond good and evil; that is above and beyond the truth even about himself. Any enquiry into the reality of national governance is banned. And so the police, administrative officials and other elements for the maintenance of “law and order” will not let anybody to commit a crime. Since publishing or spreading any information that embarrasses the regime is a crime, they will not let you commit the crime. With this mindset, society is totally controlled and repressed by the Cameroon state, and the only voice to be heard is that of the state!

It is incredible that government and henchmen that miss no opportunity to tell the world that their hero is in power because it is the will of the people want the very people to remain just hearers and believers of the voice of the state. They want their hero to be the “god” of our beliefs. They rob the people of their freedom and of the opportunity to receive education from society, because they want their all-knowing hero to be a “god” with a congregation – the people - as ignoramuses, as idiots, so that they can keep believing! With that, their hero becomes the people and he becomes the nation! His will becomes disguised as the peoples’ Will!

The violence of the Cameroon state on society is the handiwork of the henchmen of a state that has reduced the exercise of power to the function of command and coercion, and repression. The state is run as if it is separate from society; it acts on society as if it is an outside force! The Cameroon state ignores the fact that organizations like the Red Cross, Doctors without Frontiers, Article 19, Democracy Watch, Amnesty International, NDI, Transparency International and many others are emanations of society. There are thousands of such around the world that empower democracy and keep societies open and vibrant. State repression has reduced the Cameroon society to facing challenges like Boko Haram with sterile marches, haphazardly formed “vigilante” groups, and motions of support to a fabricated “god.”

In spite of all this, the Cameroon society should never give up! Even in more repressive states like the ones we had in the USSR and Eastern Europe, societies remained active. After all, it was the civil society that emerged underground that finally came to a head with the repressive states in those countries; their militant actions are symbolized by their bringing down the Berlin Wall to end 70 years of obscurantism.

Jean-Marc Bikoko, right on brother! Right on!!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

At Least 5 Killed in Cameroon Suicide Bombing


 VOA News-Those killed in Mora include a police officer, two civilians and the two young female suicide bombers, who detonated their explosives about 8 a.m. (0700 GMT) in the Galdi neighborhood near the entrance to the town.

 "It happened not far from the town stadium when the police officer who was killed attempted to carry out a routine check," a military officer, who asked not to be named as he was not authorized to speak to the press, told Reuters.
He said it was possible the death toll from the attack could rise.
Mora lies just a few kilometers from Boko Haram's strongholds in northeastern Nigeria.

Previous attacks
It marked the third time since the start of September that the area had been hit by double suicide blasts -- seven people were killed in a strike in Kolofata on September 13 and as many as 40 people are thought to have died in a bombing on September 3 in Kerawa.

Five other villages in northern Cameroon were attacked last week and the assailants looted and burned homes.

Since July, about 100 people have died in suicide attacks in the extreme north of Cameroon, which is a major contributor to an 8,700-strong, Nigerian-led regional force expected to start operations against Boko Haram this year.

Boko Haram has stepped up its attacks against Chad and Cameroon, which last year launched a crackdown on the group. The Islamist group had previously used the Extreme North region as a base for recruiting and supplying its operations in Nigeria.
Some material for this report came from AP, AFP and Reuters.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Cameroon:Mbella Moki Foresaw His Re-election As SW Fecafoot President

By Christopher Ambe
 On Sunday September 13, I was at Presbyterian Church Likoko Member, where I worship. That is where Senator Charles Mbella Moki also worships. He was also in church for worship that Sunday. After service, this reporter walked up to him, and teased him about his take on the next day’s Southwest Fecafoot election which he, as incumbent SW FECAFOOT Boss, was going to contest against lone challenger Barrister Nkongho Felix Agbor

Senator Mbella  Moki talking to reporters Monday September 14,after his reelection as SW Fecafoot President
       Beaming, the Senator held my hand, we moved to a quiet corner and he said, “Chris, you don’t need to be worried. I am going to win. It is our victory! ”
But reminded that there was intense campaign against his candidature, he now laughed and told me that he had been prayerful. The former Mayor of Buea even quoted Mark 11:24, which says, “Whatever you ask from the Lord, believe that you have received it and it is yours!”
      He went further to disclose to me that he was sure of six out of the electoral college of ten, who would vote him, insisting that no amount of inducement from whosoever could make any of  his supporters become a  sell-out. Mbella Moki, known by many as an election strategist, spoke with total confidence as if he were a prophet. “Chris, I hope you will be there to see for yourself,” he said to me, as I nodded in acceptance.
     The election venue was Capitol Hotel, Buea. And,so it came to pass on Monday 14 as he predicted, portraying Mbella Moki as an unbeatable Southwest FECAFOOT President.
     Mbella Moki, who has been Southwest FECAFOOT President since 2002, told repor
ters that his re-election was a collective victory for the game of football in the Region; he promised to work with all football stakeholders to advance soccer in the Region.
     According to the new FECAFOOT statutes and electoral code, which were adopted on August 5 2015 in Yaoundé, the winner’s new mandate will end in 2019. Elections for other FECAFOOT regional bureaus were also scheduled for same Monday.
    Election for the post of National President of Fecafoot has been billed for September 28, 2015 in Yaounde -with Tombi A Roko Sidiki, former Secretary General of the football body as a candidate
     Last Monday’s election presided over by law professor Ephraim Ngwafor was a kind of replay, considering that the same Mbella Moki had, on November 7, 2014, first beaten Barrister Nkongho Felix Agbor in the same election by seven votes to six but the Southwest Regional election alongside others nation-wide, was annulled to due to a general FECAFOOT problem.
     Loser Barrister Nkongho Felix Agbor reportedly said electioneering for the Southwest FECAFOOT election was “dirty”, but admitted that, the voting was free and fair.
    He expressed his readiness to support the growth of football in the Southwest region.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Cameroon:Mafany Namange is likely next President for Buea CPDM.

   *Warns frightened aspirants who threaten others.
                           By Christopher Ambe
      David Mafany  Namange has been an active member of the CPDM since the 1990’s,always contributing his utmost  to ensure that the ruling party in his constituency of Buea  is above all other parties.
But, in spite of   his glaring leadership qualities and the massive support he enjoys from within Buea CPDM, many political observers have wondered why he has never attempted standing for election for the presidency of the party in Buea.
       With the July 2015 announcement of the reorganization of the CPDM basic organs by party Chairman Paul Biya, aspirants for various positions are already electioneering and Buea is no exception.
 In Buea CPDM- especially with signs that Senator Mbella Moki, incumbent President of Buea CPDM (Fako III Section) may  not stand for reelection, aspirants have been hesitant to publicly and formally declare their section presidential ambition.
Njie Franklin Njie(left) aspiring to be YCPDM Buea boss and Namange Mafany eyes  post of  Buea CPDM President
       But it happened  last Monday, September 14: David Mafany  Namange ,described as a discreet CPDM tactician, formally declared, at a meeting that brought together his admirers and supporters as well as reporters, at Buea Parliamentarian Hotel, his intention to take over the leadership of the CPDM party in Buea .His declaration was greeted with deafening applause.
Following excerpts of his five-minute declaration:
 “… Looking at my political CV and listening to the calls from militants it is now an opportunity for me to move -to come on board to serve the nation through the party. That cannot be done by Mafany alone. It calls for team work. We have to build bridges and mend fences, come together as one; the political constituency of Buea has to work as one. They may be other candidates. It is their legitimate democratic right. Nobody should hold another hostage or ransom for expressing their democratic right. I am going in for this election with my team and you people. We may come out victorious, just as we may not, but we pray-and knowing that the gods of the party, the gods of the land are with us .We are going to win.
“We have served others, we don’t want others to serve us; we want them to give us an opportunity to lead them; we want to lead the party in Fako not for our good but for the common good.
“I won’t get into my political program.Today, is just to announce my intention to be your presidential   candidate. When the National President ,His Excellency Paul Biya will set the ball rolling for campaigns we will meet again; we will meet in fields, the bars, our houses; we will meet in our farms. We shall go under the sun and under rain; we shall meet for a common purpose: that of service to the people, our nation. We count on you all. Go tell others that I pledge not to fail you people and I know you won’t fail me also.
“I may not be excellent but I am convinced I can march and lead this political march. It is now time for us as a people to take a collective decision… we shall over come whatever obstacles we meet on our way; we shall overcome not because we are rich, we may not  be rich financially but we are rich because of the people we have, who are reliable.
“I pray that we shall have one list in Buea under my leadership for the service of the people. I thank you all for coming”
        According to reliable party sources almost all CPDM bigwigs in Buea are in favor of the Mafany‘s candidature, on condition that the incumbent Section president won’t stand reelection. Even at the Buea Council, Mafany is said to have a strong backing, according to one council official who chose not to be named  in this report. “He has the political experience and is cool-headed to lead the party here.”
        Mafany is  also said to have good relations with  Fako III CPDM “shakers and movers such as Senator Charles  Mbella Moki ; Hon. Arthur Lisnge ,MP for Buea Urban; Hon. Emilia Lifaka,Vice -President  of the National Assembly; Humphrey Ekema Monono,Registrar of the Cameroon GCE Board; former Premier PM Musonge and Hon. Meoto Paul Njie,former Director of Cabinet at the PM’s Office.
        But the above mentioned names are yet to publicly voice out concerning Mafany’s presidential ambition.
      Mafany ,who is a former Buea YCPDM president, and   for several  years now   one of the Central Committee’s Charges de Mission  for Fako III, is said to have done much to bring reconciliation( among warring militants)  and peace within the CPDM in Buea.
        Prince Charles Endeley, eldest son of the late Paramount Chief of Buea SME Endely, who attended the declaration meeting, described Mafany as a good political wrestler, whose presidential ambition “will put fear in other aspirants”. The prince thought that, because Mafany is young and politically experienced, the whole Buea CPDM should rally behind him for “positive change”
       Another attendee, Madam Ephanga Marie, alternate MP for Buea Urban, while acknowledging the important role Mafany has played as a reconciliator and peace-maker within the section, said he is the right person to take over the leadership of the party in Buea now.
        A noted CPDM female mobilizer, Mbamba Sophie,was overjoyed that Mafany has finally accepted the clarion call for him to contest the section’s  presidential election.
Comrade Njie Franklin Njie, who canvassed support for Mafany in his ambition of becoming the next party boss in the Southwest Regional capital, also announced his intention to run for the post of Buea YCPDM president
      When CPDM adherent Martin kange Ikoke, all the way from Yaounde, took the floor, he made a commitment that he would project Mafany’s declaration within Fako  CPDM members who are resident in the nation’s capital and canvass support for him and his team.
     The meeting’s moderator, Ako Julius Ndip, could not help calling on the entire Buea CPDM to unconditionally back Mafany to the supremacy of the party in Buea.
      The Recorder gathered that, Mafany warned other aspirants, in his declaration of intent, not to threaten others, because some influential militants who are backing him are already receiving threats.