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Prof. Maurice Kamto, Cameroon’s main opposition leader has reportedly been arrested, his party and rights activist in the Central African country confirmed on Monday, January 28.

Kamto who is leader of the Cameroon Renaissance Movement, CRM, has been taken to an unknown destination according to a lawyer in the Anglophone region, Agbor Nkongho.

Even though government has yet to comment on the development, it is largely believed that arrest which took place in Douala is linked to a peaceful protest by Kamto’s part over the weekend.

Reports indicate that he is not the only one detained but that other members of the party have also been held and are due to be sent to Yaounde for questioning.

He came in second in October 2018 presidential elections which were won by the incumbent Paul Biya.

The former Biya-appointee led an opposition coalition that involved renown lawyer Akere Muna, the pair struck a deal with about 24-hours to the opening of votes.

He was the first to declare himself winner of the vote following which security was deployed to his party offices and his residence. He was briefly put under house arrest but all measures subsequently withdrawn.

He was also at the heart of a legal challenge seeking the annulment of the presidential result. His team, however, saw their petition dismissed by the Constitutional Court which affirmed the seventh straight mandate of Biya.

Author: Abdur Rahman Alfa Shaban

Source: africanews

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SUMMARY

One netizen reminded him that it has been almost a week since the incident at dusitD2

The attack at 14 Riverside claimed 21 lives but the number could have been higher were it not for the swift response by security personnel

Cameroon President Paul Biya on Monday, January 21, extended his condolences to Kenya and President Uhuru Kenyatta over the recent terrorist attack at 14 Riverside but his message was not received kindly by some netizens.

Some slammed him for sending his message too late while others asked him to put his house in order first.​

“I extend my heartfelt condolences to President Uhuru Kenyatta over the terrorist attack at the DusitD2 hotel and office complex in Nairobi.

“I wish strength and fortitude to the victims’ families, loved ones and everyone affected, as well as health and speedy recovery to those injured,” read a post on Biya’s official Facebook page.

One netizen reminded him that it has been almost a week since the incident at dusitD2 and Kenyans have already gone back to work.

Numvi Destain: Are you just hearing of it today? Even Pdt Uhuru has already forgotten about it.

Yao Son Ibrahim: Kényans have already forgoten the incident you are just reminding them.Too late!!!

Prisco Herman: First remove the stick in your own eyes, why do you keep on consoling others without taking care of your own affairs at homeS

The attack at 14 Riverside claimed 21 lives but the number could have been higher were it not for the swift response by security personnel.

On Monday, Interior CS Fred Matiang’i heaped praises on Douglas Kanja, the GSU Commandant who led the security operation with distinct diligence and professionalism.


He further directed all National Government administrators to step up the “know your neighbour” campaigns and ensure coordination, information-sharing and joint security actions in their areas of jurisdiction to ensure the safety of all citizens. 

Source: standardmedia.co.ke

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The Federal High Court in Abuja, Nigeria has today opened a hearing between the ten Ambazonia leaders and the government of Cameroon.

Lawyers of the detained Ambazonia leaders seized the court to order their return to Nigeria where they were arrested  a year ago and extradited to Cameroon

The lawyers say their clients are not Cameroonians and should be returned to Nigeria, their place of residence where their matter can be heard in a civil court.

Thus lead counsels Barristers Fru John Nsoh and Ndong Christopher are in Nigeria where they have joined their Nigerian counterparts Femi Falana and Abdul Oroh to plead their case.

In Nigeria, they will equally be seeking to prepare documentation to prove the detained leaders have refugee status when they arrested in Nigeria.

The detained leaders had rejected the Cameroonian nationality at the Yaoundé military tribunal during the last hearing forcing the court to adjourn the case to February 7 when they are expected to show prove of their status.

Source: journalducameroun.com

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SCBC, after having followed the dynamics that led to the uncivilized killings of some prominent Ambazonian freedom fighters and innocent souls in Guzang in the Southern Cameroons, vehemently condemns the act as a heinous crime against humanity and as one that has attempted to delegitimize our God-ordained struggle for liberation from French Cameroun, after almost 60 years of annexation, militarization and political subjugation of the autonomous State of Ambazonia with its clear-cut territorial demarcations as recognized by International Law.

SCBC, faithful to its mission as the “Voice of Ambazonia”, to cover the state of the struggle for the benefit of giving impartial information both to the Ambazonian people and the international community, decries and denounces the selfcentered narcissistic propensities of some Ambazonian resistance movements and their leadership, to undermine the collective efforts of the majority of Ambazonians only for self-gain and personal aggrandizement, to the point of sacrificing the lives of the very people they are purporting to liberate from the tentacles of French Cameroun.

Ambazonians of many facets and ramifications have fought so hard to avoid any in-fighting in this revolution by organizing themselves to finding common grounds, but some rogues have slipped in, with very personal agendas attempting to destroy an edification sealed with the blood of innocent civilians, seeing they have lost any force of argument and popularity, have resorted to gangsterism and creating terror in the counties and Local Government Areas in the land of Ambazonia.

We believe in the locution of Vox popoli Vox Dei, and therefore, demand that the perpetrators of the Guzang massacre, who according to the Ambazonian Interim Government and many activists and investigators have the name and title of AGC and ADF to surrender all their activities to the Ambazonian people and hand themselves over to justice. They should seize all defense activities, dissolve their operations and place themselves under the recognized command of true Ambazonian self-defense forces.  Every resistance must be guided by the rule of law, including the respect and allegiance to the people’s will. We must recall that the Ambazonian people, though forced into self-defense by the President of French Cameroun, are generally a critical but peaceful people who respect the right to life and the right to defending themselves honorably complying with the convention of Geneva.

Following these sad and undesirable developments and events, we need to take certain steps to preempt them and prevent them from ever happening in the future. Time has come for all stakeholders in the struggle to gather for an indepth assessment of how far we have gone, to evaluate the state of the union and see where we have gone right or wrong in order to remodel and consolidate our structures while sharing a strong commitment to meeting specific goals and milestones. We definitely need a renewed spirit to help us stay true to our original principles for which we think it is imperative and maybe overdue to call for a General Ambazonia Conference that will help in conflict mitigation, indicate the way forward for the Self-declared state of Ambazonia and prepare the scenery for imminent negotiations with French Cameroun under the mediation of the international community.

SCBC seeks to play a key-role in the definition, organization and coverage of such a conference to give all Ambazonian and Southern Cameroonian representatives the opportunity to exchange ideas, determine a better vision for the struggle and affirm an undisputed common leadership framework to bring the hopes of our people into fruition without unnecessary and further shedding of innocent blood.

Friday 21 December 2018.

Ntube Francis Eseme

SCBC CHAIRMAN

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While the year 2018 was a transitional year for some countries, which changed their leaders through the ballot box, some other countries like Cameroon and Mali decided to renew their allegiance to their presidents.

The third part of the 2018 elections review gives a brief insight on how election was carried out in Cameroon and Mali.

Biya secures 7th term after 36 years in power

The 2018 presidential elections in Cameroon witnessed some happenings which completely changed the traditional system; election-proclamation of result, to feature a heated court exchange between the state and the opposition.

A lot of people wished this election could be the end of the 36 years rule of President Biya who took over from Ahidjo in 1982, but all hopes were dashed when he announced his intention to run.

The elections took place in a tensed atmosphere with security threats in the North West and South West regions which has plagued the country for over two years.

Barely two days to the polls, two opposition candidates, Akere Muna and Maurice Kamto formed a coalition after several failed attempts by all opposition leaders to come together to unseat Biya, marking the very first time the country has witnessed a coalition.

Amidst growing tension, the election was conducted hitch free but massively boycotted in the restive Anglophone regions due to security threats.

Twenty-four hours after the polls, Maurice Kamto declared himself winner during a press conference in Yaounde stating that figures he received indicated that he had majority of the votes. Such claims were watered down by the government stating that only the constitutional council had the right to proclaim results.

18 petitions were filed before the constitutional council by individuals and parties including Maurice Kamto and Joshua Osih seeking partial or total cancellation of the process. These petitions were termed unfounded and dismissed by the constitutional council.

The Constitutional Council later declared Paul Biya winner with 71% of votes,and he was sworn in for another 7 years term on Tuesday, November

*Ibrahim Boubacar Keita garners 67% votes in election run off

Unable to secure an all out victory in the first round, Ibrahim Boubacar was declared victorious in the presidential race, after amassing 67% of the votes in a run off with main oppostion leader Soumaila Cisse.

The constitutional court in the country gave a green light for a run off to take place on August 12 after results of the first round indicated that no candidate was able to reach the 50% threshold to be declared winner.

Meanwhile several opposition candidate rejected result tallies and called for recounts of some ballots, but the president of the court declared such petitions “inadmissible”.

Despite the fraud allegations filed by Soumaila Cisse, Keita’s major challenger in the elections , Ibrahim Boubacar was declared winner of the elections by the apex court and was sworn in on September 4,2018.

However, Mali’s vote was marred by insecurity which caused many of the voters to boycott the run-off presidential election.

Author: Emilia Nkengmeyi

Source: africanews

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TUMI and CO: The ShortSightedness of the AGC. “Mafia or Foolishness?”

APOW Takes A Stand

His Eminence, Christian Cardinal Tumi,

The Anglophone General Conference Convenors,

We the Ambazonian Prisoners of War (APOW) express shock and disdain to the distasteful way with which the AGC is trying so hard to sabotage the southern Cameroons independence restoration struggle.

In all God fearing and intellectual honesty, APOW, as a backbone of the Ambazonian struggle for the restoration of her independence want you to answer the following questions with the fear of God that you (TheAGC convenors) represent.

  1. What has happened to all the preconditions that were tabled to be met by the La Republique du Cameroon government
  2. The release of all Ambazonians kidnapped in connections with their independence restoration struggle?
  3. The has intensified of the Ambazonian territory
  4. The granting of amnesty to all Ambazonians on exile
  5. The bringing back and complete rehabilitation of all the internally displaced person(IDPs) and externally displaced persons (EDPs)
  6. The genocide

Contrary to the expectations of the preconditions mentioned above, la Republique du Cameroon government and their Neocolonialist mastershave rather

  • Reenforced their military presence in the Ambazonian territory.
  • La Republique du Cameroun is employing the use of chemical weapons killing thousands of Ambazonians 
  • The genocide carried out by la Republique du Cameroun on Ambazonians has intensified
  • La Republique du Cameroun is rather throwing more Ambazoniansinto jails, detention centres and execution centres
  • La Republique du Cameroun intensified the burning of villages and as such creating a tremendous increase in internally displaced Persons and externally displaced persons.

Worthy of note is the fact that Maitre Ndocki and 45 others French Camerounians arrested after the La republique du Cameroun post elections protest  have been discharged and acquitted of the same charges which Ambazonians are currently serving jail terms for.

Does it means that, His Eminence and the AGC covenors have completely forgotten about the preconditions for the AGC to hold and have given a blind eye to all the atrocities being carried out by La Republique du Cameroun on Ambazonians and honestly see that the solution is the online polls with two evils (federation or decentralization) to choose from?.

APOW, haven critically examined the AGC and their intentions have concluded that His Eminence, the covenors and the AGC itself are a nuisance and a distraction to the Ambazonian Independence restoration struggle.

We therefore call on you and the AGC to reexamine the objectives of the AGC in line with our questions above. We also demand that any convening that you steward makes room for theoption of the restoration of the independence of Ambazonia, which representsthe conviction and motivation of the vast majority of Ambazonians.”

   APOW

Chairman.                                                    Secatary General

Tsi Conrad.                                                 Ngongafi Maxim

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Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) led a letter signed by a group of Democratic Senators to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo raising deep concerns about violations of human rights, the breakdown in the rule of law, and elections fraud in Cameroon. In addition to Senator Van Hollen, the letter was signed by Senators Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Edward Markey (D-Mass.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Kamala Harris (D-Calif.).

The Senators write, “Cameroon has become an increasingly important regional counterterrorism partner and the United States has increased its commitment of security assistance in recent years. However, rising tensions in the Anglophone North West and South West regions, coupled with credible reports of human rights abuses by the Cameroonian armed forces in those regions and the Far North, where Boko Haram is active, have changed the tone of discussions regarding U.S. security assistance.”

They continue, “Reports indicate that government forces are responsible for extrajudicial killings, the burning of villages, torture, and other human rights abuses, including a much-publicized video reportedly showing soldiers executing two women, a child, and a baby they accused of being members of Boko Haram. The violent death of American missionary Charles Wesco underscores the level of bloodshed engulfing the Anglophone areas of the country. United Nations figures indicate that more than 21,000 Cameroonians have fled to neighboring countries and 160,000 are internally displaced.”

The Senators close the letter urging, “The U.S. government should make clear to the government of Cameroon that, while we remain dedicated to the fight against Boko Haram, our commitment to human rights and the rule of law is steadfast and we expect our regional partners to share that commitment. We must also emphasize the critical importance of a political solution to the crisis in the Anglophone regions, work with civil society groups to ensure that elections are free, open, and transparent, and offer our assistance as mediators. The United States should impose sanctions on individuals found to have committed gross violations of human rights, consistent with the law. In addition, we will work with our colleagues in the Senate to assess whether additional conditions should be imposed on security assistance to Cameroon.”

The full text of the letter can be found here and below.

Dear Secretary Pompeo:

We are writing in response to concerns that have been raised about the recent elections in Cameroon, the ongoing crisis in the Anglophone regions of the country, and human rights abuses related to the crisis and the campaign against Boko Haram.

Cameroon has become an increasingly important regional counterterrorism partner and the United States has increased its commitment of security assistance in recent years. However, rising tensions in the Anglophone North West and South West regions, coupled with credible reports of human rights abuses by the Cameroonian armed forces in those regions and the Far North, where Boko Haram is active, have changed the tone of discussions regarding U.S. security assistance.

Reports indicate that government forces are responsible for extrajudicial killings, the burning of villages, torture, and other human rights abuses, including a much-publicized video reportedly showing soldiers executing two women, a child, and a baby they accused of being members of Boko Haram. The violent death of American missionary Charles Wesco underscores the level of bloodshed engulfing the Anglophone areas of the country. United Nations figures indicate that more than 21,000 Cameroonians have fled to neighboring countries and 160,000 are internally displaced.

In addition, recent elections were marred by irregularities and intimidation. Voter turnout in the Anglophone regions was reportedly “marked by apathy, and in some regions, outright fear,” and driven to unprecedented lows by the military’s campaign against Anglophone separatists, which has often veered into human rights abuses against civilians. The results of the election remain heavily disputed, and multiple presidential candidates have petitioned for the results to be voided, citing allegations of ballot stuffing and intimidation. The program director for Central Africa at the International Crisis Group told Foreign Policy that “[t]here is an emerging civil war. Anglophones feel completely disenfranchised, but they didn’t need the elections to tell them that.”

The U.S. government should make clear to the government of Cameroon that, while we remain dedicated to the fight against Boko Haram, our commitment to human rights and the rule of law is steadfast and we expect our regional partners to share that commitment. We must also emphasize the critical importance of a political solution to the crisis in the Anglophone regions, support civil society groups to ensure that elections are free, credible, and transparent, and offer our assistance as mediators. The United States should impose sanctions on individuals found to have committed gross violations of human rights, consistent with the law. In addition, we will work with our colleagues in the Senate to assess whether additional conditions should be imposed on security assistance to Cameroon.

We look forward to working with you on this critical issue.

Sincerely,

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Source: vanhollen.senate.gov

The top U.S. diplomat in Africa says the Southern Cameroons could get much worse, saying “the last thing we need” is growing radicalization in response to the actions of security forces.

Tibor Nagy told reporters on Thursday that the situation in the Central African nation is worsening by the day and “worrying me greatly.”

He said the United States calls for dialogue between Cameroon’s government and the Anglophone separatists who sprang up from peaceful protests against the alleged marginalization of English-speakers in the largely Francophone country.

Nagy said he is reminded of neighboring Nigeria, where the government’s “brutal response” to extremism led to growing membership in Boko Haram.

The U.S. diplomat suggested “some form of decentralization” in Cameroon as mentioned in a proposed constitution for the country.

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Source: foxnews

 

A high power fact-finding delegation of legislators from the German Parliament otherwise known as the Bundestag is sojourning in Cameroon to meet stakeholders in the current Anglophone Crisis.

The mission which is made up of representatives from about six political parties in Germany is comprised of members of the Crisis and Conflict Committee of the Bundestag. Since their arrival in the country last Saturday, December 1, 2018, the committee members have been meeting with different stakeholders.

Our sources told us that it was the wish of the Parliamentarians that their stay in Cameroon remains low keyed. We are also told that on Sunday morning, they held their first meeting with some journalists, Church leaders and other persons at the Akwa Palace hotel Douala where these persons, mostly from the North West and South Regions x-rayed the deep-rooted causes of the conflict as well as a vivid picture of the current human rights abuses on the ground in the two restive Regions.

A similar meeting took place that same Sunday in the afternoon at the Yaoundé Hilton hotel with other stakeholders wherein a similar story was told these German representatives.

With the assistance of the German Ambassador to Cameroon, Dr. Hans-Dieter Stell, the Law makers were told of the inhuman suffering Anglophones are going through, the role of the various armed groups, the military as well as Government’s lacklustre attitude towards the much talked about dialogue, sources informed us.

These stakeholders also prayed the German Parliament to use its influence in the international relations of nations to put pressure on the Government of Cameroon and France, which is the major stakeholder to call for a negotiated dialogue with a third party.

Without promising a miraculous panacea to heal the wounds of Cameroonians in general and Anglophones in particular, the Parliamentarians promised to do their own best to shorten the lifespan of the current bloodshed.

However, they decried the heavy hand of France in matters concerning Cameroon which is blocking every international initiative.

This Monday, the German legislators met with some Government officials to read the story through their own lenses. Unfortunately, they were barred from going to the affected Regions because of the security embargo imposed by Western countries on their nationals.

Note that last month German Parliamentarians raised the Anglophone Conflict in their Parliament and challenged the Government to be proactive now to prevent a further escalation of the situation which to them would lead to a major humanitarian disaster.

It was based on this that the Bundestag sent members of the Crisis and Conflict Committee to Cameroon.

These members would then report to the Parliament in general for further actions to be taken.

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Source: natimesnews

 

Up to 50 Christian schools and hospitals have been affected, and the military has kidnapped four churches. “We need peace and the UN intervention”, a Cameroonian Christian says.

Last October, Paul Biya (86), the second longest serving president of Africa, won the elections in Cameroon with more than 70% of the votes.

The octogenarian, who has been in power for 36 years, will continue in office at least six more, despite the complaints of the opponent Maurice Kamto, who appealed the elections and unsuccessfully claimed their nullity.

THE CONFLICT IN AMBAZONIA

One of the most difficult scenarios for the president is the conflict with the self-proclaimed Republic of Ambazonia, in the West and English-speaking region, with three million people.

Up to now, the president’s policy has been based, above all, on military actions in favor of the defense of a unitary and centralized state in Yaoundé, against the groups in favor of independence that denounce what they consider to be privileges of the French-speaking part.

The conflict, which has its origins in the colonial division of the continent and the incorporation in 1961 of the former South Cameroon, occupied by the British, to Cameroon, of French exploitation, has caused the death of hundreds of people, including an American missionary killed in October, and the displacement of tens of thousands since 2016.

“WE NEED PEACE AND THE UN INTERVENTION”

Christians are not exempt from constant confrontations either. In fact, they have been the object of one of the last actions by the independence militias, which in early November kidnapped 80 students from the Presbyterian school in Bamenda.

Although the students have been released, “we need peace and the UN intervention”, says a Methodist Christian in Cameroon, who has agreed to speak with Spanish news website Protestant Digital, preferring to keep his identity anonymous.

“Many people die every day, homes and villages are burned, there are famished people and also those who take refuge in Nigeria. We do not have a voice in our country”, he adds.

PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS

Up to 50 primary and secondary schools and Christian hospitals have been affected by the conflict, according to the secretary of communication and information of the Council of Protestant Churches of Cameroon, Gustav Ebai, who has lost four relatives in the clashes.

The military has also kidnapped four churches to turn them into barracks. “The government of Ambazonia, which controls most of the Northwest and Southwest, has placed a group of soldiers in the school until the crisis is resolved”.

“There are often shootings between different forces, and a stray bullet can kill a minor”, explains the Methodist believer. Because of this tension, the Presbyterian Church in Cameroon (PCC), published a statement last October, in the community bank holiday.

“Given what the English-speaking community is going through at this time, we cannot have a celebration while many of God’s children are being killed, suffering or living as internal or external refugees”, says the text signed by the Reverend Fonki Samuel Forba, of the PCC.

“The emphasis should be placed on supplying the Working Fund for the Mission, to allow the church to continue assisting our pastors and brothers displaced by the armed conflict that has brought pain and suffering to many”, the document adds.

CAMEROON RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY

53% of the population in Cameroon is considered Christian, according to the Joshua project. Of these, about 39% are Catholics, 22% Protestants and just over 33% belong to other denominations.

The sources consulted explain that “Cameroon is a country of religious tolerance. There is freedom of worship. Most of the Christians in the country are Catholics, Presbyterian, Baptists and Evangelicals, but there are also Pentecostal groups that are growing”.

In addition, “the main challenge is to meet, and this has made it difficult for the church to have a strong voice in the country”.

According to Central African missionary of Assemblies of God in Cameroon, Adongo Augustin Atilas, “believers are not united and live much more the syncretism and its ritual practices, especially when there is a birth or during the mourning after a funeral”.

Ethnic religions represent the third largest group of people in the country, with almost 22% of the population. The second group is Islam (24%), especially in the Northern part of the country, which lives in conflict because of the presence of Boko Haram and Fulani shepherds.

“Muslims and Christians have no problem in Cameroon. They live well and sometimes can share views on Jesus, although it is a taboo for some Muslims. They can visit you at night to pray and study the Bible, but they will never go to church”, Atilas says.

POLITICAL INTERFERENCES

The increasing conflict in recent years has mainly generated two political reactions to the religious fact: indifference and suspicion, depending on the point of view from which one looks.

“The government does not care about anything, it has no solution for the problems of the people, nor is it prepared to listen to the weeping of the masses”, explains the Christian Methodist.

Atilas believes that “Christians in Cameroon are not free to express their beliefs and are threatened by the bad government of the country”.

“We knew that there would be fraud in the elections since the beginning. Biya organized the vote, counted the ballots, registered them and proclaimed the results, despite being also a candidate. What can you expect?”

Lately, politics has also become part of “the prominent churches” of the country. In fact, according to the Catholic newspaper La Croix, Episcopalian, Presbyterian and Catholic leaders, have created an alliance with representatives of the Muslim community to mediate in the conflict.

It is estimated that about one hundred pastors of the PCC have fled from the southwest and Northwest regions, because of the conflict.

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Author: Jonatán Soriano

Source: evangelicalfocus.com

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