The collapse of the AGOVC crime syndicate of Cho Ayaba Lucas, as well as the tragic images of its armed gang trying to flee the surging Ambazonia Revolutionary Guards in the Northern Zone, has left Southern Cameroons political elites and the Ambazonia Interim Government scrambling for answers. The IG tolerated AGOVC’s corruption and crimes for years. The leadership of the Ambazonia Interim Government knew it.
Some have blamed Vice President Dabney Yerima for his open door policy. Others have blamed President Sisiku Ayuk Tabe’s current and past action, either for making ham-fisted deals with dubious Amba groups or for ignoring the lessons of South Sudan.
Cho Ayaba and his AGOVC swift collapse maybe attributed to many factors both in Ground Zero and in the diaspora. But one that crosses multiple media investigations yet is getting very little attention right now is the consortium of criminal syndicates linked to Ayaba Cho Lucas and his AGovC ADF kidnapping for ransom.
Specifically, the brutal AGOVC network has for over the last five years been aided and abetted by glad-handing crooked Southern Cameroonians including one Chief Tassah Maurice (based in the USA) and Tambe Celestine in Bamenda, who reportedly is the main agent between Chief Tassah Maurice and the kidnapping gang in Menka led by Aku Eric aka Pump-Action.
Aku Eric aka Pump-Action and his armed gang are pretending to be Ambazonia Restoration Forces but Cameroon Intelligence Report investigation revealed recently that for over four years, Pump-Action has never been on any Southern Cameroons Self Defense action but he has remained in Menka under the direct supervision of Chief Tassah and Cho Ayaba to terrorize civilians, other traditional rulers and retired civil servants.
It’s not like AGOVC was unaware of the kind of criminal activities of Pump-Action! Early last year, he announced the implementation of AGovC’s unpopular and inhumane tax policy of kidnapping and torturing the people of Ambazonia for ransom.
In December last year, Cameroon Intelligence Report in an investigation revealed that there was no Cameroon government gendarmerie or military post in Menka. CIR hinted in the December 2021 report that Amba fighters from Menka have all been deployed to the Bamenda-Bali-Mamfe Highway and concluded that AGOVC had made Menka a fertile ground for extended network of kidnappers for ransom. Not long later, reports began trickling out that Cho Ayaba was receiving money from Cameroon and had also begun negotiating oil deals with UK companies in London.
Chief Maurice Tassah and Cho Ayaba Lucas are now heading the biggest source of corruption in the Southern Cameroons liberation war. Chief Tassah Maurice like Cho Ayaba remains a prominent and very successful failure whose law firm was shut down because of his unprofessional and dubious tendencies towards his colleagues and clients in Bamenda. The cash trapped lawyer retired to his village Tabunchum and took over his father’s throne as traditional ruler while his father was still alive. How Tassah Maurice raised his status from a Sub Chief to a Fon is still under investigation. He is now, seemingly, on self-exile in the USA.
Cameroon Intelligence Report sources say he reportedly started a crisis with Chief Tambu Moses of Kwafong village over political control. He unsuccessfully petitioned the Chief of Kwafong to the North West Governor and he is presently taking advantage of the war in the Southern Cameroons to pursue his personal interest in Menka.
We understand that he sent money through his agent in Bamenda to Pump-Action and then instructed Pump-Action to tag the Chief of Kwafong village as a ‘blackleg’. Pump-Action ordered the Chief of Kwafong village to renounce his throne as Chief and the traditional ruler of Kwafong quickly moved to Bamenda where he resided for a short time.
With support from Tambe Celestin, Pump-Action forcefully collected more than 1.5 million francs from the Chief of Kwafong and his family in different instances until he became ashamed to approach the Chief to demand more money. The Chief of Kwafong returned to his ancestral land and died of a heart attack and Pump-Action now has control and command over the villages and traditional rulers in Menka.
Pump-Action is now a rich man and he is growing wealthier and wealthier as ordinary Menka people are struggling and watching him building a house using the money he collects from kidnappings and from the poor villagers in Menka. The proceeds of his criminal syndicate are shared with the mother organization-the ADF of Dr. Cho Ayaba Lucas.
Cameroon Intelligence Report has documented a sea of criminal acts staged by Chief Tassah Maurice and Cho Ayaba against peaceful civilians in Menka since 2019 which include but are not limited to extortion, unlawful destruction of private property, subjugation, cruel treatment, and torture intentionally directed against peaceful civilians. These are war crimes, and crimes against humanity. The AGovC Ayaba Cho-Chief Tassah Maurice’s networks and accomplices shall face the arm of justice for these unlawful acts instigated and sponsored by them against peaceful villagers in Menka-Momo in the near future.
By Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai