Many people have asked me as German with an Ambazonian heart: “Mr. Messner, where do you see the key to the success for an independent Ambazonia?” and I answered: “Well, it’s true that we seem divided and unarmed and much weaker than our occupier and annexor “Republique” du Cameroun, but since Mancho Bibixi started the coffin revolution and millions of Ambalanders marched and sang the Ambazonian anthem holding the own flag proudly, it is clear that we will win, because the clocks can never been turned back after that and Biya’s clock has run out.
He is making more and more mistakes on a sinking ship and we will be soon surfing on a global wave of support, because all arguments and legal facts speak for us and against an outdated, rotten corruption exploitation-system like France-afrique. The Europeans are understanding the fact that France-afrique is producing more and more refugees better and better and they will whistle France back and support Ambazonia, because Ambazonia has hundreds of millions of Africans behind it who can be promising business partners if they are self-governing well.
But both Europeans and Africans need to learn still what good self-governance and true federalism in it means. It does not mean what centralist governments in Paris or Yaoundé say: “We have decentralization.” No, the French model uses “decentralization” or “federalism” only as figleaf for a basically centralist, Unitarian type of politics. But true federalism means that sub-national entities like regions, districts, provinces are allowed to truly self-govern even in some existential fields like own taxation, own army, own trade laws, own politicians, which have to have their residence in that sub-national entity.
But since French Cameroun is not able and willing to run true federalism it is better and necessary for Ambazonia to be its own sovereign state and nation, which decides for itself, how much federalism it allows in itself. But in order to convince French Cameroun and the whole world that an independent Ambazonia will not lead to a permanent instability in Central Africa Ambazonia needs to just say that it plans to have a CONFEDERACY with French Cameroun later IF Biya has gone and French Cameroun has reformed its government and constitution.
Many now in Ambazonia will say: “No! We don’t want to have anything to do with French Cameroun anymore!” That is very understandable, but the point is: in a Confederacy Ambazonia does not need to have anything to do with French Cameroun other than not attacking it militarily and having mutual treaties of not attacking the other’s nationalities on the own turf. Ambazonia would have zero French Camerounese politicians or military on own territory and the other way round. In a CONfederacy Ambazonia would have own government, constitution, economy, military, federalism, and French Cameroun would have own government, constitution, economy, military, federalism. Ambazonia and “Sanagia” won’t federalize with each other, but just confederalize on military non-attack-treaty and by that put all powers in the world at ease that this Central African region will keep stability and not produce refugees.
So our tactics on international political stage should not be: “We want all (independence) or nothing!” but we rather say “CONfederacy after restoring our elevated autonomy.”, because this is the bait which France and UK can swallow, and then we can easily make an independence out of our recognized elevated autonomy. In all this we Ambazonians shall never negotiate from a weak position, but always say: “We will never accept illegal foreign troops on our territory or corporations stealing our resources. But if you foreigners don’t want to die all, you better agree with our goodwill offer of a CONfederacy after Biya has gone and French Cameroun has elected a new government as much as Ambazonia will also have elected its own government!” So the word “CONfederacy” is just the tactical, nice looking wrapping around the gift “Ambazonian solution to France-afrique’s crisis” to the French, British, AU and EU, which makes them think about dropping Biya, and whistle his troops out of Ambazonia. And maybe someday, when the Biya nightmare is long over and French Cameroun has reformed it’s Constitution and government and may have found a new, young, progressive, modern leader, he and the Ambazonian leader will work out a Confederacy between the two sovereign nations which will be the biggest peace- and prosperity-bringer for all sides as never imagined.
So don’t see the word. Confederacy negative right now but be against federalism between “Anglophones and Francophones” with all your might. Speak always about the “Ambazonian solution to the French Camerounese malgovernance problem”. And say: “Let the Anglophones federalize their way (by restoration of independence) and let the Francophones federalize their way (by reformation of their system). Only this will bring lasting peace in Cameroon.”
By Christoph Messner