I enjoy meeting sessions. It is fun and exciting. But once it involve politicians and worse if they are Cameroonian, I immediately begin to suffer from stress and palpitations. No matter how hard I try detaching from my emotions.
Friday January, 27th 2012 at CNPS - Buea, under the chairmanship of the SG to the Governor; Politicians and political parties members, Members of Parliament, Former PM Mafany Musonge, Mayor of Buea, academics, Traditional Elites and Leaders, Community Heads and Political activists, Local and National NGOs, CBOs and many others were present for the first preparatory meeting for President Biya’s visit to Buea in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Cameroon Reunification.
The session lasted for over 4hours. Attendance brainstorming and deliberating on what outstand as priority for the SW people – a need for good roads was unanimously accepted to be the first priority. That notwithstanding, the need for a befitting hospital was also mentioned.
While on the other hand, Chief Mukete remarked on the importance for effective communication. “Communication is very important. Information should be given in all languages so that many people can understand or know what is going on.” Chief Mukete said.
Ironically, while almost every person was been given the chance to speak; Mola Njoh Litumbe seemed to be the sole person who kept raising his hands so high. Which reminds me of my school days whenever I wanted to share an experience or pose a question to my teacher; I would raise my hands tall-up for the teacher to give me the floor. Sadly, Mola Njoh’s ceaseless attempts to speak ended only on his seat. and not even the shouting crowd and the heavy noise: ‘Mola Njoh, Mola Njoh must speak…” was sufficient enough to make the deaf SG respond to the popular voices.
How amazing, I witnessed how overtly without shame somebody was denied to speak. And contrary to the chairman’s remark - “this meeting is for all of us. Nobody should be left out”.
Mola Njoh in his own word:
" Presentation Notes – Concertation Meeting – 50th Anniversary ofRe-Unification of Cameroon
With all protocol respected, I humbly stand before you, on the kind invitation of the Secretary-General at the Governor’s Office of the SW Region of LRC, to participate at this concertation meeting for the celebration of the 50th anniversary of re-unification of Cameroon.
2. We all know that the 50th anniversary of the independence of the state of La Republique du Cameroun took place last year on 20th May, so the celebration announced by H.E. President Paul Biya to take place in Buea this year, relates to the 50th Anniversary of the date when it is claimed Southern Cameroons joined La Republique du Cameroun.
3. But re-unification implies rejoining component parts of a territory that was previously dismembered. Kamerun was once a German colonial territory which she renounced at the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 following defeat in WW1. It therefore ceased to exist. Subsequently, parts were ceded to Gabon, Central African Republic and to Chad. The greater part of the German colony fell in the hands of the allied troops of France and Britain, and was divided into French Cameroon, and British Cameroons that were separated by an international boundary. British Cameroons was later divided by the UN into two parts on 21 Apr 1961 by Res. 1608(XV) with different dates (1 June 1961 and 1st Oct 1961) for the attainment of their independence. Northern Cameroons, the bigger part, went to Nigeria, and smaller part of Southern Cameroons is what we are here concerned with.
4. One can therefore confidently assert that a union between Southern Cameroons with that part of German Kamerun which gained independence from France on 1 Jan 1960 and became known as La Republique du Cameroun, with Southern Cameroons (the smaller part of former Br Cameroons) CANNOT validly be referred to as a re-unification of Cameroon. What we are meeting here to discuss can, at best be described as a union between La Republique du Cameroun with Southern Cameroons, but clearly not a re-unification of the German colonial territory of Kamerun with portions now fully integrated in at least 4 other neighbouring states.
5. Besides, a partnership between any two persons or states is governed generally by the Rule of Law. For a partnership between a member state of the United Nations (as LRC was as from 20 Sept 1960) with another territory, the joining modalities are clearly stated in the UN Charter Art 102 to which LRC was bound as from the date it was admitted a member state of the UN. This Article provides that the terms of the union have to be reduced into a written Agreement, with a copy filed at the Secretariat of the United Nations. Failing compliance, the event of the so-called joining is invalid by virtue of Arts 102/103 of the UN Charter. Additionally, if the joining is between a member state of the UN and a non-independent country as Southern Cameroons was on 1 Oct 1961, the power-sharing arrangements between the parties are fully set out by UN General Assembly Res. 1541(XV) of 15 Dec. 1960, passed with the participation of La Republique du Cameroun.
6. We are faced here with a situation where the alleged joining on 1 October 1961, violated the provisions of the UN Charter Art 102, meaning that the two parties are merely living in a state of political concubinage, but not of legal wedlock which requires parties to comply with the rituals prescribed by law before a Civil Status Registrar. An agreement between the parties to live together is not a marriage, unless the rituals for joining prescribed by law are complied with.
7. The 50th Anniversary celebrations we are here to plan for are to celebrate an event that never legally took place. But it is not too late to make amends. The President of LRC should be informed when he visits Buea, that the best way to diffuse the problem is by constructive dialogue between the parties and, if they wish to stay together, they should agree on the terms of association, sign an Agreement to that effect and file a copy at the Secretariat of the United Nations in evidence of the engagement they have freely entered into.
8. The Law establishing the so-called Federal Republic of Cameroon, promulgated by President Ahidjo on 1st Sept 1961 had no legislative authority beyond the territorial boundaries of French Cameroun which became La Republique du Cameroun at independence on 1 Jan 1960 with internationally acknowledged secure boundaries. Indeed a leading CPDM activist who is Professor of History at the University of Buea, Professor Victor Julius Ngoh has stated in his recently published book that Law No. 24/61 which purported to create a Federation of two states on 1 Oct 1961, was never debated, approved, and promulgated by the West Cameroon Legislature, and, as a result, could have no relevance in Southern Cameroons since the law was passed in the foreign parliament of La Republique du Cameroun. Southern Cameroons was not a part of La Republique du Cameroun on the promulgation of that Law on 1st September 1961.
9. I welcome the President’s desire to visit Southern Cameroons, where he is assured of the very warm welcome that the People of Southern Cameroons have historically reserved for visiting Colonial masters. The People of Southern Cameroons should take advantage of this visit, however, and draw attention to the neglect over their territory over the past half century. The derelict condition of the state-owned Buea Mountain hotel is a sore case in point. Such presidential visits usually come along with development projects in the territory.10. When President Biya visits Southern Cameroons for whatever reason, he should condescend to give audience to people other than those on his payroll who in consequence are obliged to pay slavish respect to him because they enjoy the financial benefits of the present corrupt system and therefore cannot see anything wrong with it. I would welcome the opportunity of being received in audience, and I will have the courage to inform His Excellency that the chorus resolutions and cheers from CPDM party loyalists and others in Southern Cameroons who benefit directly from a corrupt system of administration, can only be likened to the jubilations of a “loyal” crowd who clapped for the King in the story of the “The King’s New Clothes,” when in actual fact the King had no clothes on and it was a little boy, clinging to the mother’s arm, who boldly announced to the crowd that the King was indeed Naked. The clappings immediately stopped.
Mola NJOH LITUMBE27 January, 2012".
What People Are Saying?
Cameroon politicians wont cease to make me laugh. Imagine the SG to the Governor's office today at the 1st preparatory meeting for president Paul Biya's coming to Buea to the so called Reunification of Cameroon, 50th anniversary (1st Oct 1961 -2012) - when asked the question "Sir, when exactly,the date, is the president coming to Buea".
SG replied: "The head of state he himself took the sovereign decision to come to Buea. We are very sure the celebration will take place. When: This year".