Friday, June 1, 2018

Cameroon - Anglophone Crisis: Ending the war in Southern Cameroons, Regime change in Yaoundé is the only option


Biya and his ruling CPDM crime syndicate are under immense pressure at the moment. The West including the United States are now supporting anti-government actions from opposition groups and the civil society. Southern Cameroonians are slamming the Biya regime for plundering the nation’s wealth on his family and tribesmen and have pulled out of the Cameroonian federation.  Will the Biya Francophone Beti Ewondo regime pay attention to the demands of French speaking Cameroonians to end the senseless war in Southern Cameroons? Almost certainly not. For 57 years, the people of Southern Cameroons have been suffering under cruel and callous successive Francophone regimes that use brutality to oppress.

The Biya government will continue to fund state terrorism in Southern Cameroons and it will continue to destabilize the Central African Republic.  It will continue to deplore huge financial resources to get President Buhari elected in Nigeria. It will continue to train, fund and arm numerous other militias in the Central African Republic. It will continue to interfere in the internal affairs of nations such as Chad,Congo-Brazzaville and Equatorial Guinea and it will spark conflict where it can like in Gabon. And it will not put the needs of French Cameroonians before any of this.

How do we know this will continue if Biya stays on? Well, quite simply because this is what the Biya Francophone Beti Ewondo regime is based on. It could not survive 35 years without this. For this reason, regime change in Yaoundé is the only option. Internationally, the regime has portrayed itself as having a moderate leader in the person of President Biya.  The regime itself has spoken about dialogue, peace and unity but this is a self-proclaimed label that is based on absolutely nothing. There have been no signs of dialogue ever since the Southern Cameroons crisis began. In fact, quite the opposite. When the teachers and lawyers strike action started, instead of engaging the Consortium leaders for all the concessions they granted the Paul Ghogomu Commission, Yaounde instead criminalized dialogue, arrested the leaders of the Consortium and continued to threaten and provoke Southern Cameroonians.

The consortium of CPDM crime syndicates has a history of crushing anti regime protests, but the current crisis in Southern Cameroons is unlike any before. This time, it is all sectors of the Southern Cameroons society that are calling for recognition of Ambazonia by the international community. Southern Cameroonians are facing execution, arrest, imprisonment and torture, yet they are still risking everything to make their calls for a new nation in Africa heard. It is clear now that regime change is the only way forward for the two Cameroons to live in peace. French Cameroonians too should take advantage of the happenings in Southern Cameroons and endorse regime change as the only way to ensure that their bleak futures have any kind of hope.

Since the Ambazonian uprisings started two years ago, instead of condemning the Biya regime and holding it accountable for the killing and violence towards Southern Cameroonians, the African Union, the EU and the UN have turned their backs on the people and remained silent. However, the US ambassador Peter Barlerin has expressed his support for the people of Cameroon and made it clear that the West wants regime change too. And he has the backing of the majority of the diplomatic community in Yaoundé including the US Congress.

Ambassador Barlerin has sounded a note of caution to Biya that the world was watching. His Excellency Peter Barlerin also reminded Mr. Biya that human rights are an automatic right – not something granted as a gift by an 85 year dictator.

By some strange happenstance, the European Union, on the other hand, is very reluctant to comment on the current situation in Southern Cameroons. It appears to want to ensure that nothing affects Sub Saharan Africa after Biya, so it’s keeping quiet. When will the EU realize that regime change will benefit not just French Cameroun, but the entire sub region?

Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai