By Fred Ndango, Saturday, January 14, 2017
Cameroon Journal, Bamenda – Members of the Southern Cameroons Consortium of Teachers, Lawyers and Parents meeting yesterday with the gov’t arranged adhoc committee to find solutions to ongoing strike action by Teachers and Lawyers rose from the meeting with rather more punitive measures against the Cameroon regime, daring it to summon an immediate referendum that returns the country to the status prior to 1961.
“The government should organize a referendum without further delay so that West Cameroonians can effectively return to the two State Federation.”
They made the demand in a hastily drafted press released sent out early this morning, Cameroon time. In the release, the leaders said they are calling off a scheduled press conference they had planned for 11:00AM Cameroon time, justifying it on increased insecurity in the city.
They also disclosed in the press statement that just after the talks ended late last night, some four Southern Cameroonians were fatally shot by trigger ready military 0ficers deployed into Bamenda, wondering why gov’t should be talking dialogue and at the same time militarizing and brutalizing citizens.
“Our people,” they said, “are ready to peacefully resist the sadistic military occupation which have continued unabated for half a century.”
Due to general insecurity in town, the press conference scheduled for the 14th January 2017 at 11AM at the Presbyterian Church Centre has been cancelled,” the press statement read.
The statement, signed by Barrister Nkongho Felix, Dr. Fontem Neba and Tassang Wilfred, begins with a chronicle of how proceedings at the committee started.
“At the start of the talks, our history was evoked and the treacherous path West Cameroon has gone through in this tiresome union with La Republique du Cameroon.”
The statement continues, “A plethora of issues was discussed ranging from the future form of the union, admission into professional schools, the non-respect of certain laws, to the creation of institutions to serve West Cameroon.”
“The talks were frank, heated and occasionally cordial,” they reported, adding that; “In fact most participants at the dialogue appreciated the process and hoped that it might lead to an eventual resolution of the crisis.”
Explaining why they didn’t stage a walkout given their precondition that all arrested youths must be released first, the statement stated, “Inpsite of the
non-release of those children kidnaped and taken to Yaoundé where they have been tortured mercilessly, the Unions still accepted to talk to gov’t in the hope that reason might prevail. While the teachers were preparing to educate the public on the discussion and the resolutions, today 14th January, elements of the police and gendarmerie went on rampage at about midnight yesterday shooting four unarmed young men and severely wounding them.”
As a result of the development, the consortium condemned in very strong terms, “government hypocrisy evident in the simultaneous use of dialogue and lethal force against West Cameroonians,” the continuous militarization of the Northwest and Southwest regions, calling on West Cameroonians to rise up and defend their freedom. The statement calls for complete Ghost Town in all of West Cameroon for two uninterrupted days – Monday to Tuesday, January 16-17 from 6:00AM to 6:00PM.