Paul Biya’s Intransigence to Peace; Vows more Political Vices: Good Politics is at the Service of Peace
By Mbiydzenyuy Dave WANTANGWA
As this new year begins we are deeply disturbed by the future that awaits the Cameroons. It was disgusting listening to the same catalogue of stale statements enlisted by the President of La Republique du Cameroun, Paul Biya. His usual traditional New Eve speech which is usually taken to be an occasion to listen to his intentions of where he wants to lead the country as on other occasions, would have easily been regarded as a replay of a former speech if not of the mention of 2019.
At a moment when international pressure is, for two years now, demanding inclusive, unconditional dialogue to end what some people have inappropriately called the ‘anglophone crisis’ Paul Biya still went ahead as if in an insensitivity to the lives which his bad governance and wrong decisions have wasted both in the military and most especially among the civilian populations.
The present war on the Southern Cameroons has been persistently described by the religious authorities in Cameroon as “a useless and senseless war”. The international community recognizes the senselessness and uselessness of the war, except the brutal dictator in Cameroon that has insisted with a group of senseless and useless accomplices to impose his bloody rule on the people of Cameroon. It is necessary to recall that Paul Biya is going the same way Mobutu went and others. Brutal dictators are a senseless breed that understand nothing, but the argument of force and brutal crackdown of rightful protests against their senseless rule over the people.
It will be interesting to make a necessary comparison here with the speech of the Pope Francis who made a direct appeal to the consciences of bloody regimes and haters of peace.
“No to war and to the strategy of fear. A hundred years after the end of the First World War, as we remember the young people killed in those battles and the civilian populations torn apart, we are more conscious than ever of the terrible lesson taught by fratricidal wars: peace can never be reduced solely to a balance between power and fear. To threaten others is to lower them to the status of objects and to deny their dignity. This is why we state once more that an escalation of intimidation, and the uncontrolled proliferation of arms, is contrary to morality and the search for true peace. Terror exerted over those who are most vulnerable contributes to the exile of entire populations who seek a place of peace. Political addresses that tend to blame every evil on migrants and to deprive the poor of hope are unacceptable. Rather, there is a need to reaffirm that peace is based on respect for each person, whatever his or her background, on respect for the law and the common good, on respect for the environment entrusted to our care and for the richness of the moral tradition inherited from past generations. Our thoughts turn in a particular way to all those children currently living in areas of conflict, and to all those who work to protect their lives and defend their rights. One out of every six children in our world is affected by the violence of war or its effects, even when they are not enrolled as child soldiers or held hostage by armed groups. The witness given by those who work to defend them and their dignity is most precious for the future of humanity.” cf. No. 6 Message of His Holiness Pope Francis, for the Celebration of the 52nd World Day of Peace, 1 January 2019).
Instead of opting for a rethink of his bad policies that have plunged the country into this mess, Paul Biya, shamelessly vowed to crush those whom he refers to as war mongers. For the past years of fighting, his military growing weary by the day, wasting the lives of innocent and ill-prepared military, has not realized that it is time to turn towards their leaders and demand for the explanation to the meaning of this senselessness against other citizens.
Again the Pope notes, ”Sadly, together with its virtues, politics also has its share of vices, whether due to personal incompetence or to flaws in the system and its institutions. Clearly, these vices detract from the credibility of political life overall, as well as the authority, decisions and actions of those engaged in it. These vices, which undermine the ideal of an authentic democracy, bring disgrace to public life and threaten social harmony. We think of corruption in its varied forms: the misappropriation of public resources, the exploitation of individuals, the denial of rights, the flouting of community rules, dishonest gain, the justification of power by force or the arbitrary appeal to raison d’état and the refusal to relinquish power. To which we can add xenophobia, racism, lack of concern for the natural environment, the plundering of natural resources for the sake of quick profit and contempt for those forced into exile.”
After continuously constituting a clique that has persistently plunged the country into insurmountable political vices, after leading a regime that is steeped in beyond reasonable measure into political vices, he still has the courage to vow to continue with more political vices.
The claims of the Southern Cameroonians is legitimate and we cannot shy to say so. Their claim to self-determination is legitimate. Their protest against the brutal dictatorship of Paul Biya a worse inheritance of that of Ahmadou Ahidjo is legitimate. Their complaint against the uselessness and senselessness of the regime is legitimate. Their claim and protest against failed justice and educational systems are legitimate but the arrogance and brutality of the francophone usurpers of both their territory, their culture and their values would not allow the regime to back down from some intransigence and brutality.
Will the military come to its senses and realize that they are being used by unscrupulous politicians to waste both their lives and the lives of other citizens? Will the administrators and political slaves in the system wake up some day, and react to their continuous slavery in a deadly system? Will the traitors of the people of Southern Cameroon serving the brutal regime in Yaoundé realize that you cannot trade the dignity and self-determination of a people for nothing whatsoever on earth? Will the international community ever wake up and realize their common responsibility and commitment towards the humanity that is suffering in slavery in the Cameroons, having been taken as hostages in their fatherlands by a few thugs that lie mercilessly against their people and perpetrate endless political crimes against their own very citizens? Who will lift a hand to relieve the situation if the countries that have the opportunity to save the Cameroons even for the benefit of their interests are just watching and only cautiously urging the brutal dictator to take action, a thing he has shown abundantly clear that he is unwilling to do ever since he declared a useless and senseless war on “his” people whom he shamelessly labelled as terrorists. Yet the fact is clear, admitted or not, no government has ever won a war against its own people. The Yaoundé brutal dictatorship had better awaken from this eclipse of reason and take another road.