In The Art of War, Sun Tzu said, “know the enemy and know yourself in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.” Although there is a huge appetite among Ambazonians for a muscular approach on French Cameroun airwaves when talking about the atrocities committed in the Southern Cameroons, many have the impression that some who claim to be with them and speak for them in their quest for freedom are dishonest and are enemies within. Historic and current trajectories have inspired this Cameroon Concord News review of Barrister Agbor Ashu, the so-called Ambazonia spokesman in Ground Zero, as a person of interest in relation to Sun’s philosophy and dogma of war.
Over three months ago, Cameroon Concord News Group was dependably informed that prominent Southern Cameroons leaders invited Barrister Agbor Ashu to assume the leadership of the Southern Cameroons struggle in Ground Zero. However, he responded saying, “I am the National President of a legalized political party and will never get myself mixed up in your Ambazonian issues”.
Emmanuel Agbor Ashu (to use his three names) is implicitly a typical “bite and blow” and a serial killer that is deadlier than his onetime acolyte Ni John Fru Ndi the CPDM historical mistake who in utmost naivety, greed and disregard for inalienable rights of a people, openly rejected the Ambazonian ideology and legitimate right to self-determination.
Following the barrister’s refusal to take over leadership of Ground Zero affairs, Cameroon Concord News developed interest in the man of law including his genuine position on the Ambazonia struggle. Our investigation has uncovered a worrying trail of duplicity in the man seen by many as liberator.
Back in September 2018, when Sisiku Ayuk Tabe and his top aides who were abducted in Abuja, Nigeria in January 2018, surfaced in SED Yaoundé, the Interim Government of Ambazonia (IG) was eager to commission team of lawyers to defend them in any potential legal proceedings. When contacted to head the legal team of the NERA10, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu requested that the IG pay him FCFA 2.5 billion, buy him a new car, and furnish an office in Douala for him. Sako Ikome was stunned, Chris Anu was speechless, and Elvis Kumeta was astonishingly shocked by the Manyu Barrister’s low sense of judgment.
When the Interim Government informed him that his financial demands were bizarre and outlandishly unaffordable, the man of law replied, “then they can take them to the gallows”. Consequently, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu is one of the few high profile lawyers who elected not to defend the NERA10 in their court appearances in Yaoundé. Genuine revolutionaries and agents of justice and freedom do not abandon their own to the “gallows”. They often graciously embrace any opportunity to rescue those they claim are their comrades from the claws of a brutal oppressor.
Correspondingly, when the SDF was the only political show in town in the early 90s, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu, Larry Eyong Echaw, and TT Tabenyang reportedly took Chairman John Fru Ndi to Manyu on a political tour. Fru Ndi could not spend an hour in Ewelle village because Barrister Ashu had nowhere to host the visiting SDF delegation.
People are genuinely suspicious of a man who has prostituted from the CPDM to SDF and to his comical Reform Political Party. He has now appointed himself spokesman for the Ambazonia resistance on French Cameroun television networks. Barrister Emmanuel Ashu is now appearing on national television claiming to have a bright insight and deep understanding of the Ambazonia crisis when his true motive is being a surrogate for the disgraced Sako Ikome, who stole USD 2 million of Ambazonian money.
The Man of Law has pseudo academic intelligence, lacks composure, integrity and is emotionally too erratic. He has a relentless appetite for attention and is only a decent man where money is not involved. Those who happen to know him personally have increasingly defined him as a loose cannon devoid of trustworthiness. His recent defense of the failed two weeks lockdown of Ambazonia with a concealed agenda to increase the pain and sufferings of the people and subsequently spur them to revolt against the movement for the restoration of statehood by alluding to the UN General assembly proceedings in America also reveals Barrister Agbonde (to use his pet name) is out of touch with reality or not intellectually grounded with UN processes and public actions that exert positive influence on UN activities. A lockdown of a street in Maryland led by Ikome Sako would have been more impactful and would have saved Barrister Ashu from embarrassing himself with tantrums on TV just to defend a lie.
Our investigation uncovered that the Barrister has a propensity for asking the right questions and then precisely giving dishonest answers. To put it charitably, the gap between what he says and the truth is alarmingly wide, and this is a trait that has plagued him all his life. His last appearance on a French Cameroun TV claiming that the disgraced Sako Ikome, had control over Ambazonia self-defense forces was an inaccurate stereotype and the Barrister knows that. His numerous appearances on TV have given the barrister the false impression that he speaks for genuine Ambazonians.
Barrister Emmanuel Ashu “owns” a political party in French Cameroun called Reforme Party. The head office of this contraption of a political party is on his poorly conceived social media page. On the party’s Facebook page, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu published that “candidates who wish to be sponsored by the Reforme Party in the municipal and parliamentary elections 2020 in Cameroon, can contact the National President through the following numbers: 699989279, 675005043, 678511482,695969343”
Cameroon Concord News Group understands that over the last twenty years, Barrister Ashu has campaigned during every election in French Cameroun but never ended up on the ballot paper as he constantly sells out to the CPDM. He stood for elections in French Cameroun as recently as 2020 and the same man wants Southern Cameroonians to think that he is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with them.
For Barrister Ashu Agbonde, the Ambazonia struggle represents an opportunity to line his pockets, especially, as, in his view, there’s an irreconcilable mismatch between the money that the Ambazonia Diaspora has and what is being sent to people like him in Ground Zero. The barrister draws comfort from the fact that the disgraced Sako Ikome and other members of the Maryland cabal have taken radically different paths to reality and integrity. The Southern Cameroons uprising has also presented an opportunity for the Barrister to escape poverty even if it means chasing winds and shadows.
In 2015 our Douala city reporter met Barrister Ashu dressed with an unpardonably tattered shoe, a pair of trousers with countless patches, a dreadful body odour, and looked desperately hungry. The barrister is undoubtedly another product of the unending poverty culture in the Cameroons, which is a result of Paul Biya’s dreadful pattern of governance. Being a product of this poverty culture, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu belongs to an unenviable club of Manyu citizens in their 60s who have not contributed an iota of development to the villages.
As a man who courts popularity at every turn, the Ambazonia struggle offers him a platform to present his outdated law credentials. With Fru John Nsoh now full of sorrow, harboring multiple illnesses and extremely lacking in financial finesse in Maryland, USA, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu has now replaced him in the French Cameroun city of Douala as Southern Cameroons leading legal embarrassment.
The barrister possesses neither character nor direction, and in terms of personality, he is deemed inadequate by his peers. Barrister Emmanuel Ashu’s pretence of hammering the Yaoundé regime on French Cameroun airwaves has been exposed as a scam. He is skilled at joining any bandwagon with evil plans. His legacy is one of political and personal failure, intellectual recklessness, and dismal poverty.
Ambazonians should be wary of this man, given his history and penchant for political prostitution and deception. He is attracted to political games, dirty and cheap money. To be sure, Barrister Emmanuel Ashu is a Southern Cameroons political disaster and a successful failure.
By Isong Asu in London and Dr Patrick Ayuk in Johannesburg