Strikes to continue unabated as Prime Minister Yang Philemon mission fails
Anglophone trade unions have announced a continuation of the massive strike action after their meeting with the President Biya emissary failed to reach an agreement. Prime Minister Philemon Yang held intensive discussions with Barrister Bobga of the CCLL association, Tassang Wilfred of CATTU, Tameh Nfon Valentine of TAC including leaders of the motortaxi drivers union. But the conversations were not productive.
The Premier also met with traditional authorities, the clergy, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Bamenda, Prof. Nkuo Theresa Akenji and the leader of the Social Democratic Front, Ni John Fru Ndi. Cameroon Intelligence Report gathered that the climax of the forum was the political discourse the Prime Minister initiated with the leaders of SYNES,TAC, CATTU, PEATTU, BATTUC, and CEWOTU represented respectively by Dr Abangma James, Tameh Valentine, Tassang Wilfred, Afu Steve , Ayeah Emmanuel, Kimfon Michael and Tasi Ntang Lucas.
After three hours of deliberation, Yang Philemon and his CPDM team from Yaoundé that included some Francophones requested the teachers’ delegation to draw up a chronograph of their demands and to set up a timeline of activities which would involve what Philemon Yang called “institutional framework.” The Prime and his men also demanded that the trade unions should give the CPDM government a time frame to work and submit results and above all make a declaration that the strike has been called off.
The Anglophone leaders told the prime minister that the Southern Cameroons strike action cannot be called off on the basis of promises. A frustrated Yang Philemon and his predominantly Francophone delegation were disappointed. The debate on suspending the strike was frank, candid and thoughtful. The many Francophones who were part of the Philemon Yang delegation publicly opined that the Anglophone leaders should suspend the strike to save the Prime Minister. The Anglophone leaders observed that by refusing to suspend the strike they were protecting the Prime Minister from being a victim because they know he is powerless in the La Republique structure. The talks ended in fiasco but has however galvanized a wonderful solidarity between the lawyers and the teachers.
By Rita Akana in Bamenda