3, June 2017
Jean Fils Ntamack, the Attorney General of the Court of Appeal in the Center region has announced the creation of a special inquiry into the death of His Lordship Bishop Balla of the Bafia Diocese. The Attorney General said the investigation will be conducted jointly by the Judicial Police and the Central Investigation Department of the National Gendarmerie.
The Bishop’s remains (seen here) were discovered by a Malian fisherman at a place known as Tsang in Monatele in the Lekie Division on Friday the 2nd of June. Under the supervision of the Attorney-General, the investigation will be carried out under the authority of state prosecutors from courts in Bafia, in the Mbam-et-Inoubou, and Monatélé in the Lékié Divisions where the body of the bishop was recovered. Mbam-et-Inoubou and Lékié are two of the ten divisions of the Center region.
The late Bishop disappeared on the night of May 30, 2017 and his body was found lifeless on June 2nd off the Sanaga River after a traditional ceremony led by the patriarch of Mbam who pleaded to his ancestors for the Bishop’s body to be made available to the living. For almost 72 hours, efforts made by sea divers from the Cameroonian Navy and local fishing community proved futile.
Many now say it was after the ritual performed by the patriarch that a Malian fisherman on his canoe saw the body. Local residents then alerted security forces, who formally identified the body as that of Jean Marie Benoit Bala, who was until Tuesday night, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Bafia.
By Chi Prudence Asong