EDITORIAL: Cameroon, a Country Where Rats Are Appointed to Keep Guard Over Groundnuts

Peter Musonge Mafany
Peter Musonge Mafany

Friday, March 17, 2017

Cameroon Journal, Washington D.C – In a special bilingual 5pm newscast on Wednesday, March 15, CRTV reported that President Biya has appointed former Prime Minister, Peter Mafany Musonge, to head the President’s newly created National Commission for the promotion of Bilingualism and Multiculturalism.

The appointment of Musonge to lord over the Commission is a threat to the very usefulness (if any), of an initiative that has already been severely assaulted over questions of its usefulness and timing.

At the Cameroon Journal, we wish to bring to the attention of the public the fact that, it was only last month that Peter Musonge summoned and chaired a kind of a meeting in Buea where he spewed out hate speech against Cameroonians of the Northwest origin, blaming the current Anglophones crisis to North Westerners, which he condescendingly referred to as “Bamenda people.”

At that meeting, Musonge and his cronies, got so obsessed with denigrating North westerners to the extend they called for their purging from the Southwest when they suggested the creation of vigilante groups to attack and destroy businesses owned and operated by Northwesters.

In his own words, Musonge said, “It is time for South West to take back its destiny in its hands.” He insinuated that, it was the violence from “Bamenda that has prevented his people (South Westerners) from sending back their children to school,” that if the “Bamenda people” are chased out, South Westerners would go back to their normal course of life. These are the words of the man that President Biya has appointed to build unity.

That President Biya, aware of such a track record and the unpopularity of Musonge in Anglophone Cameroon would yet, go ahead to appoint him leader of what he deems to be a unity building organization, beats our imagination. Mr. Biya has once again demonstrated how insensitive and careless he is as a leader when it comes to proffering lasting solutions to the crisis plaguing the nation.

At The Cameroon Journal, we ask, how will Musonge promote unity and multiculturalism when he does not even believe that Cameroonians and North westerners in particular, have the right to live in any part of the country?  How will Musonge promote other cultures when he is on record describing some citizens as “invaders?” How will Musonge promote unity in diversity when he does not believe in diversity? How will Musonge promote other cultures when he has referred to some as “cam no go,” etc.

We note here that in civilized societies where human dignity influences appointment making, such statements from Musonge would have disqualified him from holding any public office for life. Unfortunately, we are talking about Cameroon, a country where the old never go on retirement, and they are answerable only to the President – not to the people, – the interest of the common man counts for nothing. Cameroon is essentially a country where rats are appointed to keep guard over groundnuts. Musonge’s case is such a glaring example.

The appointment of Musonge and all the old guards over the meaningless and money squandering commission on Bilingualism and multiculturalism is once more another indication that Paul Bya means no serious business in resolving the crisis that is quickly crippling the economy of Cameroon. Even thinking of using people like Musonge should be proof enough that Paul Biya cares less about the demands of Southern Cameroonians. If anything, it should by now be very clear to Anglophones that the only solution to this crisis isn’t in some commission, it is in total independence for Southern Cameroons. The work of this commission must be fiercely resisted by Southern Cameroonians everywhere; it should not be allowed to hold any form of talks, investigations and implementation of its resolutions in the Southern Cameroons territory.

Do Southern Cameroonians really need a commission to have Francophone teachers out of their schools and colleges? Do Southern Cameroonians need a commission to have Francophone Magistrates withdrawn from their court rooms? Do Southern Cameroonians need some commission to tell them how many Ministerial positions Anglophones ought to have in Cameroon? Do we need a commission to proscribe Francophone Governors, SDOs and DOs in our territory?

Do we need a commission to resolve the fact that SONARA ought to be paying taxes to Limbe city Council, that taxes from Timber exploitation ought to be paid to councils in Meme, Ndian and Manyu? Do we need a commission for every ministry in Yaounde to function in a bilingual setting? The answer is no. We are well aware that in Cameroon, Paul Biya roles by Presidential decree, if he were that serious in resolving the current Anglophone demands, it would take him just a presidential decree and all these things would be history.

All we need now is an independent Southern Cameroons, our Southern Cameroons. Musonge should be stoned should he come around trying to hold any meeting of that Commission in the Southwest or Northwest. It’s a shame that at his age, Peter Musonge cannot speak truth to power to save his people.


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