Barrister Akere Muna has thrown his hat in the ring towards running for the Presidency of Cameroun. Some amongst us are Ambazonians and others are Cameroon Federalists. The common denominator between Ambazonians and Cameroon Federalist is that we believe in self-determination for the erstwhile Southern Cameroons. Since 1961, we’ve had one opportunity to seize history and shape our destiny. That was in 1992 when Fru Ndi won the Presidency of Cameroun. His unwillingness to give up his life to defend the people’s vote partly explains why we have allowed this Biya amoral and inept monstrosity hold Cameroon hostage. What Biya and and his murderers, of course with French connivance are doing to the Southern Cameroons today is what they did to the trade Unionists in 2008, as they did to the Northerners; multiple times, and Yes!, it is what they did to the Bamilekes in the 1960s. Without a 5000 force trained army today, and a major power backing us, and absent of a U.N. sponsored referendum, we cannot deliver the military punch to realize our independence. However, we can be shrewd to deliver, or refrain from impeding a leader that will be disarming of Cameroon’s Beti led murderers. An Akere Muna candidacy will also empower other actors in Cameroon and through his articulated “Defining Cameroon”, empower us on our path to self-determination. This is why I strongly state 10 reasons why Akere Muna’s candidacy is a plus to everyone in Cameroun, including Southern Cameroon’s Ambazonian Self-Determinists.
1.) The learned Barrister Akere Muna is more Francophone than Anglophone. He doesn’t buy into secession which will put him at ease with most Francophones and probably the French, thus more palatable to take over the helm of Cameroun through the ballot Box
2.) He has lived almost all his professional life in Yaoundé and deeply understands the inner workings of Cameroun’s power structure. He will rally support from the monied class in Cameroun and should he win, will be able to draw enough support from the Francophone zone to battle it to Etoudi.
3.) He has passion and conviction in a Federal Cameroon with just governing structures; an Independent Judiciary, Legislature and Executive. I watched Akere Muna’s declaration video closely, and when he said “We need to define Cameroon”, he is saying we failed to define Cameroon in Foumban and “for far too long”, have continued in that trajectory of abysmal failure. I sense originality and candor in his conviction and in his battle-mood. That is precisely who you need on the war front.
4.) As an attorney, Akere Muna has always stood up to defend the downtrodden. He was there when the leaders of the Consortium were arrested, he was there prior to the Carnage on October 1st to alert the United Nations. His instinct is to battle and disarm the “Absolute Power” that has turned Cameroon into an orgy of endless thievery, limitless nepotism, murderous ambitions, and a blight of hopelessness. As head of State and Commander in Chief of the Army, he will have a chance to put together a team that can transform Cameroon.
5.) From the little I know of Akere Muna, he is shrewd and fights with sharp elbows when the chips are down. From his track record in defending the Consortium leaders even in the teeth of threats from the regime’s organized and professional killers, I believe he will fight to the end should he receive the people’s vote, instead of the impotence of being consigned to house arrest in some provincial “Quartier” as we saw in 1992.
6.) As a candidate, he will be able to appropriately leverage the international community towards throwing its weight to ensure fair elections in Cameroon. He has chaired continental and international U.N. affiliated organs to know how to assuage the pulse and interests of international actors towards assisting to deliver a transition in Cameroon. Additionally, as someone who has spent his entrepreneurial life in the private sector, he should have better business instincts in knowing how to protect Cameroon’s interest against an ever-present, predator interests of foreign actors.
7.) Much of the criticism towards Akere Muna’s candidacy comes from the role which his father, the late S.T. Muna played in overthrowing Ngom Bobe Jua and dismantling the State of West Cameroon. While I agree that every criticism on S.T. Muna on this basis was well earned , any reasonable person should be inclined to judge Akere Muna as a person, purely on his own merits. Whether you love or loathe the Munas, we should let our better angels govern our thinking and refrain from castigating him with our justification being solely his father’s legacy, or lack thereof.
One thing that is ominous is that despite access to lucrative government positions, the Muna’s are not known to have participated in this orgy of loot and un-Godly greed that has characterized Cameroun. That is partly because, despite Pa Muna’s drawbacks, he instilled in his children a spirit of hardwork, love for education and meritocracy. These values will help feed the conviction towards assembling a team that can right the ship of Cameroun, enabling the path for Southern Cameroon’s own self-determination; be it through a Federated State or outright Independence.
8.) Those who castigate the late S.T. Muna for the demise of the Southern Cameroons and West Cameroon state, give him too much credit. They don’t give credit to the role he played in getting us out of the Eastern House of Assembly in Nigeria in 1951. Neither is it fully factored that the head of the Southern Cameroons State towards Foumban and towards October 1st 1961 was John Ngu Foncha, who instead of standing as Southern Cameroon’s Premier for the interest of Southern Cameroons, abandoned ship, eying his post of Vice President under Ahidjo. By the time 1968 (Jua’s overthrow), and 1972 (Fraudulent Referendum) came around, both our blunders in 1961 and Britain’s refusal to follow U.N. mandates 1608 and 72(b) in ensuring Southern Cameroon’s self determination had already done us in.
9.) The regime is already plotting against Akere Muna, calling him a terrorist, dragging him to the Military’s SED for interrogation, e.t.c. They are afraid of his candidacy for obvious reasons. On that front, let’s not give a chance for this Biya-Monstrosity to perpetuate itself beyond 2018. Let us not snatch failure from the potential of a victory that can disarm those whose gleeful goal is our indiscriminate slaughter.
10.) Any doubters with a brain that has some pulse should now know that “Peace Plants”, “School Strikes” and “Ghost Towns” will neither deliver us Independence nor Federalism with its true tenets. If we opt for other optimal means of realizing our independence, and….. I mean, in the lethal sense, it will take us approximately 3 to 5 years to build that capacity, if we are serious. Barrister Akere Muna’s candidacy will not be detrimental in our pursuit of our Emancipation Quest.
By Valentine A. Gana