16, May 2019
According to the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) Cameroon has objected to another UN Security Council meeting on the worsening humanitarian crisis in the country.
The meeting is supposed to take critical decisions that are expected to change the course of events in the two English-speaking regions of the country.
The government’s objection is retarding the deployment of UN humanitarian staff in the country’s two English-speaking regions where a simple protest has turned into a full blown insurgency that has resulted in the death of thousands of Southern Cameroonians.
It should be pointed out that the Yaounde government has been frustrating the UN and has even barred human rights organizations from entering the country.
Last year, the International Crisis Group was banned from the country while staff of Human Rights Watch were turned back at the Douala International Airport.
The government has been indicted by human rights groups for gross human rights violations, especially as it has resorted to a scorch earth policy that has created huge hordes of refugees who are seeking safety in Nigeria, Equitorial Guinea and Gabon and over half a million internally displaced persons.
Over the last two years, army soldiers have been killing innocent citizens, raping women and burning down villages and towns in the firm belief that Southern Cameroonians can be intimidated into submission.
The current rebellion has significantly affected the country, with state-owned corporations such as CDC, PAMOL and others being put out of business.
The country’s lone oil refinery, located in the southwest region, is under threat as separatist fighters threaten to disrupt oil product in the region.
The economy of the two English-speaking regions has been brought to its knees and kidnappings, mostly carried out by government sponsored militia, have become a lucrative business in the regions.
Meanwhile, the country’s Prime Minister, Dion Ngute, has been visiting the two English-speaking regions to sell a peace plan designed by the government with the objective of ending a rebellion that has had the full support of the Southern Cameroons Diaspora.
With over 4 million Southern Cameroonians living a broad, the Yaounde government has been given a run for its money and the Diaspora is determined to break up the country so as to end the exploitation of the two English-speaking regions by the Yaounde government.
The government’s peace plan does not seem to attract any recognition and sympathy. Southern Cameroonians are determined to fight to the last person standing and the government’s exclusion of separatists from any dialogue on the crisis is a death sentence on the peace plan Mr. Dion Ngute is selling.
Southern Cameroonians are aware of the product the Prime Minister is selling, but they are not buying it, as it is tainted with trickery, deception and dishonesty.
The Prime Minister’s visit was made to coincide with the UN Security Council meeting held on May 13, 2019 in New York to demonstrate that the government was doing its best to restore peace in the country.
While the Prime Minister is seeking to mobilize the population to support his peace plan, soldiers and government militia are still killing women, children and youths, making it hard for peace to return to the troubled regions.
However, if the Dion Peace Plan has to gain traction, the Prime Minister must seek to reach out to the Southern Cameroonian Diaspora that is using its vast resources to create a violent nightmare for the government.
The Yaounde government stands to gain if it works with the Southern Southern Cameroonian Diapora in a win-win partnership.
The Diaspora constitutes a fundamental component of the country’s population. Ignoring it or seeking to exclude it from any dialogue will be the government’s greatest undoing.
The Dion Peace Plan is doomed to failure as Southern Cameroonians do not trust the Yaounde government that is known to speak from both sides of its mouth.
The world has to step in to ensure Cameroon does not implode. A chaotic Cameroon is bad news to its neighbors, as pointed out by Equatorial Guinea on Monday during the UN Security Council session that urged the government to embrace the notion of inclusive dialogue that holds more hope than war.
By Linda Embi, Kingley Betek and Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai.