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Editorial

Faced with mounting pressure, Cavaye blinks- but don’t expect a legislative revival

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The Anglophone crisis is finally getting its fair share at the country’s lower house as parliament speaker Hon. Cavaye Yeye calls for an open debate concerning the once taboo subject-Anglophone crisis.

The veteran Speaker of the house was speaking today Wednesday 19th, 2019 during a plenary session of the house.

The statement from the House Speaker is in itself history as the rubber stamp parliament has failed to discuss the Anglophone crisis, queuing behind government mantra as the crisis worsens.

Creating history by addressing the house for the first time in both official languages of the country today, House Speaker Cavaye called on lawmakers to debate and find long-lasting solutions to a crisis many say the solution now rests far beyond the borders of the national triangle

In a surprise twist of events following an eventful opening session of the house, the house speaker is embracing much-trumpeted dialogue after he has been heavily criticized by fellow opposition MPs for ignoring the crisis which has been debated elsewhere around the globe

Reacting to the call by House speaker in parliament, SDF’s Joshua Osih chastised the house speaker for calling for debate and dialogue almost three years late, saying what the country needs is an inclusive dialogue involving all parties of the conflict and not a parliamentary debate-opening another front of potential verbal confrontation even as SDF boost of limited firepower in their arsenal

The CPDM controlled house has failed to honor its constitutional responsibility of legislative independence from the Executive, opting instead to criticized foreign parliaments for doing their join for them

Most lawmakers have routinely and embarrassingly denied the existence of the Anglophone crisis, blindly support government’s uncoordinated actions which are clearly not enough and largely remained in Yaoundé as their constituencies light up in flames.

For an armed conflict which has been debated in EU, Germany, UK, Canada and other parliaments around the world, Cameroonians have been stunned by the historic silence of their representatives and bewildered by the neglect from their own lawmakers in what is the biggest humanitarian crisis in the country since independence

Issues about the Anglophone crisis have been a lightning rod in the house as MPs prefer to debate whether the issue should be an agenda for parliamentary discourse outside the glass house rather than inside as many continue to die from ravaging gun battles.

In December 2016 during the height of the crisis, SDF’s MP Hon. Wirba made history and defiled house standing orders with a bombshell speech, ignoring raucous calls from CPDM MPs led by their speaker to leave the rostrum as he detailed the crisis and warned of dangers ahead.

His defiance and bravery endeared him in the hearts of many Anglophones and he instantly became a symbol of the revolution.

 According to the rights group,  thousands have died, leaving more than 500 000 displaced and more than 200 villages razed government figures put those numbers far lower, saying only about 150 000 people have been displaced and are being taken care of.

A parliamentary revival?

Many are welcoming the latest move from the country’s third most powerful man as a parliamentary revival, but if recent activities are a pointer, and then we are far from that.

Faced with mounting international pressure which is drying up much-needed cash in Yaoundé, House Speaker is flexing his muscle where he can, joining the bandwagon of uncoordinated and contested dialogue initiated launched by the country’s premier chief Dr. Joseph Dion Ngute

Last week, the speaker took aimed at the International community and foreign governments which he says want to destabilize Cameroon, the President of the Senate reiterated the same stance three days later during the opening session of both houses of parliament.

Government critics say Yaoundé is trying to buy time amidst mounting international pressure adding the government has no appetitive to resolve the crisis

For lawmakers who are living well beyond their mandate as another extension looms which might keep them into the office till 20220, the House Speaker doesn’t have so many options to avoid the country’s most urgent and pressing security challenge which is threatening to disintegrate the very foundation of the state whose legislative branch he presides

With deserted villages, daily gun battles, massive unemployment, the rising death toll, and tired population, it might be a matter of time before al government branches realize that there is only one option-genuine and inclusive dialogue with everybody on board.

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Editorial

National Dialogue: Biya puts Dion Ngute at the crossroads of Cameroon’s history

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Many have dubbed him the country’s “luckiest” prime minister as Chief Dr. Joseph Dion Ngute is tasked with the responsibility to find lasting solutions to the Anglophone crisis-a historical problem which now threatens to return the country to pre-independence border.

Brought in during the latest cabinet shakeup earlier this year, the former minister was considered a surprise pick for the job. The South West born premier has been tasked with arguably the toughest and indeed exciting job in history.

Dion Ngute’s fate certainly rests with the success or failure of the planned dialogue but at the same time provides the seasoned diplomat the unique opportunity to create some of the best chapters in the country’s political history.

Prime Minister Dion Ngute has been busy ever since President Biya undercut his ministers and announced a surprise national dialogue. The move has been welcomed by the International community and different political actors at home

In a race against time, the premier who is tasked with chairing the dialogue has been holding different level consultations with opposition leaders, activists and different stakeholder within the contest of preparing the framework of the much-anticipated dialogue

Dialogue like no other

But Dion Ngute will be chairing a dialogue which centers on the survival of the country he now oversees its operations—at least on paper.

The Anglophone crisis which has gone violent for three years now has been a historical problem of the country ever since independence.

 The Anglophones have systematically complained of marginalization and discrimination in the dominant French-speaking union. Independence fathers west of the Mungo have tried and failed in the past.

This is not the first time the country will be converging under the umbrella of the Anglophone problem to chart a common course.

But previous meetings by Fonchas, Munas, and others have failed to resonate within political elites of the country at that time  had to prioritize national unity over bi-cultural values of the two people who agreed to reunite in 1961.

But despite the warning shots from independence fighters about the cracks emerging from our unity, the government has failed to implement most of the measures many believed would have gone a long way to avert the crisis.

But a three years crisis which has drawn the attention of the International community killed thousands displaced hundreds of thousands and seen many villages razed has forced the government to reconsider its position as the pressure keeps mounting at home and abroad.

Dion Ngute will be chairing a meeting, many say should be the bedrock of the future of one and unified Cameroon, strengthened by its diversity and people.

Dion Ngute has been given one of the most difficult job description ever handed to any of his predecessors in recent memory, it is left the “nyanga boy” as he is fondly called to decide how he would love to be remembered by history.

 

 

 

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Editorial

Editorial: Biya flashes Amba light…..at last.

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In a highly awaited speech announced for September 10th 2019, the President of the republic Paul Biya has shocked many.

In one of his longest speeches as president since he took over office more than 36 years ago, the 86 years old focused on the Anglophone crisis ravaging the North West and South West regions

In his introductory note, the president regrets the killing by armed separatists, kidnaps and torture in the three years crisis.

For the first time since the crisis started, the commander in chief also gave his heart felt condolences to all the families affected during the crisis which he said has forced “thousands of our population to live in other regions and neighboring countries”

The President who has been blamed for the poor handling of the crisis moved to familiar territory, enumerating numerous measures he believes his government has taken to resolve the crisis which began as strike led by teachers and lawyers in 2016

In his long list of measures reminiscent to a campaign speech, he mentioned the discontinuance of judicial proceedings to over 200 persons, his offer for armed groups to lay down arms and the creation of national disarmament  and rehabilitation committee among other achievements.

“We will continue to make the necessary efforts to fully materialize these efforts” he adds

But in a speech were many where pregnant with expectations of a big announcement, the president in all honesty failed to deliver once again on the national stage

Opposition leader Maurice kamto and all political prisoners arrested and incarcerated were ignored entirely in the speech

President Biya refutes any claims of marginalization within his government, touting the appointment of prime ministers from Anglophone regions for close to a generation now

Grand dialogue announced

In what could have been a glimmer of hope for the long night, the president announced a massive dialogue which has been describe as panacea to finding lasting solutions to the crisis.

President Biya says all sons and daughters of the republic will be called upon to participate in the dialogue to find lasting solutions in the country. The dialogue according to him will be chaired by the prime minister, rallying lawmakers, business leaders, security forces, armed groups and victims of the crisis among others.

Why the dialogue will be seen as a welcome move by many back in the Anglophone regions who have long clamored for any dialogue of this kind, the terms of the dialogue will certainly fail to please hardliners who say any such dialogue must take place out of the borders of the country and chaired by a third party.

Long speech, nothing new

In all, the president said nothing new in the highly awaited speech, touting regular phrases and achievements many believed was meant for International audience and CPDM supporters.

President Biya also failed to grant the much clamored amnesty to prisoners involved in the crisis, and rather intensifies his advocacy for a one and indivisible Cameroon, a statement critics perceives as a provocation to the separatists

For those who were expecting general amnesty, the President was clear, no one should be deceived that criminal acts would be pardon just to advance dialogue, he said, and made it sufficiently clear that perpetrators of violence abroad will face justice in no time as he slaps the wrong people and embrace the right ones

He however says that after the grand dialogue, a presidential pardon might be rollout to those incarcerated on certain conditions, while insisting that any such dialogue must take place within the constitution of the republic and the country.

National Reaction

Speaking to CRTV after the speech, the revered Catholic cardinal, Christian Cardinal Tumi who has been a vocal critic of the regime says he is positive with the announced dialogue, urging the prime minister to take all measures to ensure it’s a success

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Editorial

The nation holds its breath as Biya announces an unusual address.

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 Monday, September 9th, 2019. More than 20 million Cameroonians are on the edge as the minister, Director of civil cabinet of the Presidency announced in a press release an unusual address to the nation by the president of the republic.

Very few saw this coming and for a leader who has characteristically confined himself to his traditional addresses of the nation for the past 36 years, the nation cannot wait for the next 24 hours.

“Info Martin” and other French papers had carried botched plans to address the nation on Saturday 7th September 2019 and even though no reason was given for the 11th-hour cancelation, the reverberations for a planned unusual address were felt across the national triangle for those who believed

Many were those who saw the news as fake news, believing that the commander in chief cannot and will never go out of his usual routine to address the nation even as the state of our nation looks very in tatters

For any other country facing a major crisis in 7 out of its ten regions punctuated with the fact that its main opposition leader and more than 200 of his supporters have been arrested and incarcerated for refusing to accept Presidential elections addressing the nation could have been no news.

But the news here is that Cameroon is no another nation, and things happening in Yaoundé remains and happens only in Yaoundé

As news spread on social media about the planned addressed to an expectant nation yearning for a message of any kind from an increasingly distant government, the main question which comes to mind is the content of his address.

We look at five possible declarations in the historic address on Tuesday, September 10th, 2019

Amnesty for all political prisoners

The national triangle is practically in flames with Boko Haram in the Far North and Anglophone crisis in the South West and North West being the most preoccupying. There has been pressure at home and abroad for the government to find long-lasting solution to the multiple crises in the country for the past three years now

But the incarceration of Maurice kamto and his supporters have caused the government more pain than the losses on the battlefield, unleashing a usual army of the disgruntled diaspora who have vowed to make life uncomfortable for the aging leader each time he comes to Europe

The life sentencing of Sissikou Ayuk Tabe and Co. have worsened the situation in the restive Anglophone regions, sparking two weeks of lockdown and plunging the regions into anarchy in the wake of back to school as local authorities scramble to contain the situation with disgraceful measures.

There have been  widespread call for the Ambazonian leaders, political leaders and all those arrested to be granted an Amnesty from the President of the republic as a sign of goodwill.

Planed inclusive dialogue

It has been the cry of the people and the hope of the compromised International community as Biya and his government has rubbished calls for meaningful dialogue to resolve the Anglophone crisis and insist on military strategy

The military solution they opted has failed and brought more chaos and disfranchisement amongst the Anglophones and friends of Yaoundé are fast running out of patience with the regime as many continue to die.

It is highly believed that there might be plans for immediate and urgent inclusive dialogue as called for by US, France, UN and other members of the International community to solve the crisis

10 state federation

Many are predicting the imminent announcement of a 10 state federation by the president of the republic, but coming at a time when a ministry of decentralization was recently created and plans to announce regional elections this 2019, many believe this would be one of the least tools in his hugely revered political toolbox meant to be used for tomorrow’s political offensive

Retirement

Can the president retire from office? There have been reports of some health issues with the country’s commander in chief in the past even though TeboPost cannot independently confirm.

But at 86, he is frail and weak and naturally must have some health complications. Images of the head of state shaking and seemingly confused during the post-national day celebrations party at the Unity Palace on May 20thhad led to speculations that the President was in dire need of rest. But his recent outings have shown a man strong and fit to lead, making this option quite confusing to guess.

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