Southern Cameroonians are no longer attached to their television sets and radios relaying information from the French Cameroun capital, Yaoundé. They are now on their computers and mobile phones, avidly following the war against French Cameroun occupation and the politics going on in the diaspora. Ambazonians are now fully aware that they made a costly mistake to have rejected the union with Nigeria.
Southern Cameroonians can no longer cope in a French teleguided political system where, a sitting President can never be voted out of office, where the French ambassador is the second most important personality in the country and where even football decisions are made in Paris.
Even French Camerounians are fed up with their leadership but they are not willing to do anything about it. Since 1990, voter turnout in the so-called one and indivisible Cameroon has been very low—less than ten per cent and those who show up often chose the opposition candidates.
In the last election that the leading opposition candidate Prof Maurice Kamto reportedly won, the whole process was disappointingly inefficient, as if the nation hadn’t realized it would actually be having an election that year. Nothing that was put in place by ELECAM worked! The electoral register didn’t work, and a special registration system that voters had to go through before casting ballots resulted in government officials dishing out money to get votes.
French support for Francophone dictators in French Cameroun, Congo Brazzaville, Gabon, Togo, Chad and now Equatorial Guinea is indeed making a mockery of education and democracy. No issue can push a Francophone head of state out of office. Not the millions of dollars of oil revenue disappearing; not broken promises to provide electricity and create jobs; not a complete mishandling of the crisis in Southern Cameroons or the Boko Haram insurgency.
Ever since he took office in 1982, Biya’s regime has overseen human-rights abuses and a strangling of personal freedoms. Biya has never distanced himself from the sway of men like Amadou Ali, Laurent Esso and the late Martin Belinga!! Biya has never appointed competent technocrats, and he has never prevented government officials from enriching themselves on the job. His Special Criminal Court has targeted only regime barons eyeing his job.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a wakeup call for all in Francophone Africa!! Macron has successfully forced all French surrogates including Biya to allow French businesses to operate while France is maintaining strike European Union directives in the lockdown process.
Change is needed in French Cameroun. Change is needed in Etoudi. Change is needed in Yaoundé. Fallen oil prices, the war in Southern Cameroons-Ambazonia and a floundering FCFA currency is making life harder for both French and Southern Cameroonians. But Yaoundé needs a decent man to run its affairs!! Not a man whose wife’s friends are Koffi Olomide and Wizkid but a man with integrity- DAVID ABOUEM À TCHOYI
By Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai