By Fred Ndango, January 10, 2017
Cameroon Journal, Washington D.C – Retired Ambassador Henry Fossung has bared out his mind on the current strike action by lawyers and teachers and the struggle for Southern Cameroon sovereignty. Answering questions posed by our reporter in his Baltimore, Maryland home, in the United States, Fossung pledged unequivocal support to the current struggle and appealed to all Southern Cameroonians to support the consortium leading it, arguing that if all sectors of society in the Southern Cameroons do not join the fight, detractors will easily tell the world how “only teachers and lawyers are disgruntled.” Full Interview:
You are considered one of the leaders of the Southern Cameroons, but your people have been in crisis for almost two months with schools and courts shut down and you like Paul Biya have failed to make a statement. What is holding you back?
Please allow me first to commend you at The Cameroon Journal for excellent journalism. Your contributions are helpful. We have not been held back at all. We are very busy with the International Community whose sincere, honest, and good wishes for a two-state federation equal in status, were subverted and destroyed leaving the Southern Cameroons in a position of inequality. President Paul Biya can afford to be silent and insensitive, because they are perpetrators of the despicable situation now. No leader worthy of his salt can be inactive when his people are facing gruesome torture, persecution, illegal arrest, detention, and imprisonment.
What is your appraisal of the way current struggle to free the Southern Cameroons is being fought? Teachers have shut down schools and the courts are down, would you advise any differently?
We fully support the current struggle to restore our sovereignty, and to encourage every sector of our society to join because, otherwise, the enemy will continue to tell the world that only lawyers and teachers are disgruntled. Freedom’s struggle is everybody’s fight.
It is now for every leader to step in. What the Catholic Bishops did is worthy of good leadership. We hope all other religious denominations will follow suit.
Elected leaders need no persuasion because their constituents are now direct victims of Le Cameroun brutalities. Even those also who are handpicked. They are handpicked from constituencies also. The M.P. from Jakiri is fully conscious of what he is as a leader of a people.
In fact, every leader or MP, be he elected or handpicked, needs to stand up to be counted and to give the account of his stewardship.
You have long fought for the independence for this territory and you are certainly very aware of the complications involved in granting total independence to the Southern Cameroons. There are so many Anglophones and Francophones who have inter married. Many Anglophones have built investments in Francophone cities and Francophones too have investments in Anglophone territory. How do you work out a compromise between these in the event of total independence for the Southern Cameroons? What becomes of those investments?
Intermarriages and cross-border investments have never stopped any struggle for freedom anywhere in the world. They will not do so with us. Nigeria, our western neighbors, was a British colony and us, then a trusteeship territory, were ruled jointly by the United Kingdom for almost as long as we have been with La Republique. When time came for parting ways, intermarriages and investments did not present any problems. We went our way and they theirs without any show of a finger.
Diplomacy has effective mechanisms in case of problems or failure for which there is the International Court of Justice. Even though the tyrant east of the Mungo knows not the rule of law.
Do you plan on returning to Cameroon anytime soon to continue the fight?
Not as soon as we would wish. President Paul Biya as an annexationist is legally incompetent to give us what we want. The International Community can, and that is why that front of our struggle is very important as well.
For results, anybody working for that front of the struggle must know and be known by the International Community, because it has its strict rules of the game. What a can can can, a can can’t.
We learned that during recent demonstrations in Buea, your permanent residence was vandalized by gov’t security forces even though you have been out of the country for quite a long time. Can you tell us what actually transpired at your residence?
It is well-known at home and abroad that whenever the Southern Cameroons questioned La Republique’s annexation, my house and property became their target for wanton looting, vandalism, and callous destruction.
The freedom of my people, and not property, is important to me. It is known at home and abroad that, but for my
property in Yaounde, we would not have gone to the UNO in 1995 when, by God’s blessing, two of our founding Fathers were still with us. No compatriot can, at any time, underestimate the importance of that trip to United Nations.
After then, I escaped twenty (20) attempts on my life, thanks to God, and the uni super power, the USA, for granting me asylum and protecting my life to-date. My country, family, and I remain very obliged to the Government, and the great people of America.
During the period in question, the armed forces of La Republique came in three mighty trucks full of police and others, carrying all sorts of gadgets. They worked for three hours and left my home terribly vandalized and looted. In 2006, President George W. Bush and the US Congress saved my house from being burned. I am very grateful.
Are you in any consultations with leaders of the struggle at home? What are you saying to them or what would you say to them?
Yes. We are in constant touch with our base. Subjects of our consultations are, for now at least, not for public consumption.
Please let me say an additional word or two to our population. For our struggle to get the impact it deserves, all able sons and daughters should join. No vehicle must be allowed to carry anybody away. No imprisonment or detention, as well as arrests.
Be very careful of black legs, they like thieves never change. They come in various forms. Know your leaders and avoid black legs.
Since we met our Lord God, our first bullet, He has been at the forefront of our struggle. Allow me to give you encouragement that He gave to Joshua:
Joshua 1:1-9. That should be our prayer every day and night, so that we continue to work together with the Creator who is the unquestionable sovereign of this world. He has promised to be there for the captives and He knows that the annexed is worse than the captive. When we are with Him, we shall not stumble, nor fall, until we get our sovereignty.