The former Mayor of the city of Buea, Patrick Ekema Esunge, might be dead, but his name will be with us forever. Patrick Ekema was the mayor who distinguished himself through his sheepish determination to ensure that ghost towns decreed by Southern Cameroonian fighters did not see the light of day in Buea.
But Ekema failed woefully despite the support he received from some quarters in Yaoundé. His reckless behaviour, wickedness and corrupt nature only helped to send him to an early grave.
Patrick Ekema might have died of a massive heart attack as revealed by medical sources, but there was more to his story than it met the eyes. A delegation from the Presidency of the Republic had visited Ekema to deliver him some bad news. His own party, the ruling CPDM, had clearly stated that he would no longer be the candidate for mayoral elections for the following reasons:
Ekema had become more of an embarrassment to the party because of his fake certificates;
He created a fake struggle between South-westerners and North-westerners which was hurting the party’s image, causing the Southern Cameroons crisis to escalate;
He totally disrespected senior southwest politicians such as Prof. Dorothy Njeuma and Prime Minister Peter Mafany Musonge;
He paid a journalist to slander Senator Mbella Moki, alleging that the senator had HIV; a story that was totally false. Of course, being HIV-positive in modern days does not mean anything. HIV-positive people live a normal life, but CPDM barons felt Ekema had crossed a major red line and needed to be stopped and demoted; and
He ran the Buea council as if it was a personal plantation and he had the nasty habit of dipping his hands into the till as if it was his personal ATM.
Faced with this embarrassing situation, Ekema became very desperate, looking for a way to get a visa for himself and his second wife so that he could leave the country. But things did not go according to plan. He did not know how to face the population he had antagonized while he was a mayor.
The party he had fought for was simply rejecting him for lack of finesse on his part. Ekema was finally caught up in a downward spiral, causing him to drink liquor as if it was water.
This was not good news to his fragile health. With his excessive weight, diabetes, and high blood pressure, Ekema did not stand a chance if attacked by another disease. He was a colony of diseases for many years and the heart attack was simply a fine finisher. May he continue to rest in peace!
By Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai