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“We shall end in court” Balla sets a legal rendezvous with UB

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Barrister Agbor Nkongho To Sue University of Buea over Termination of His Teaching Contract
By Christopher Ambe

The University of Buea(UB) on Wednesday ,May 6 terminated the teaching contract of noted human rights campaigner,Barrister Felix Agbor Nkongho ,who was an instructor in the Faculty of Laws and Political Science of the institution since 2015.

But Agbor Nkongho,considered as a spirited fighter, appears to be bent on engaging the University of Buea in a legal battle, in the days ahead ,over what has been described as “wrongful termination of contract.”

“The contract of Mr. Felix Agbor Nkongho,recruited as an instructor in the Department of English Law through Decision N0. 2015/0514/UB/AcA/TTSD/TSS of 02 June 2015 is hereby terminated with immediate effect,” read part of the termination letter ,signed by the Vice-Chancellor of UB,Professor Ngomo Horace Manga. He noted that his termination was,among other considerations, motivated by the unanimous verdict of members of the Disciplinary Council,which Agbor Nkongho boycotted.

After receiving the letter of termination of contract yesterday afternoon,Agbor Nkongho told this reporter that he was already discussing with his lawyers the possibility of dragging UB to court.

“We shall end in the court. I prefer that [the university] should also win me there…I am already discussing it with my lawyers”, he said confidently, and would not comment further.

Agbor Nkongho has been ejected from the Unversity for setting an examination question on the Anglophone Crisis,on a course(Law 243) he was teaching titled “ Political and Constitutional History of Cameroon.” He was teaching in the Department of English Law.

He had been summoned to appear on Wednesday May 6 before the Disciplinary Council of the University of Buea for a hearing on allegations leveled against him “for non-compliance of professional obligations for a question you set on law 243,titled Political & Constitutional History of Cameroon,during the 2019/2020first semester examination”, but he boycotted the sitting and instead sent a protest letter to the University justifying his decision not to honour the summons in person.

In his reply to the summons, Agbor Nkongho stated that legal provisions in force for inviting a teacher before the Disciplinary Council were not respected.

“An invitation for a teacher to appear before a disciplinary panel must be preceded by the respect of certain statutory provisions. There are a set of decrees and ministerial circulars entrenched to govern and regulate disciplinary proceedings involving university teachers”,wrote the lawyer/instructor in his protest letter,citing the legal provisions to buttress his point.

But speaking anonymously to this reporter ,one of the most senior officials at the University of Buea, said: “Mr Agbor’s [arguments] are null and void. Those provisions he cites do not apply to him. They appy to lecturers.But he is an instructor whose contract expired in 2019.”

Questioned why the instructor was still working in the university if his contract had actually ended, the source retorted, “The University was just too kind and polite to invite him to the disciplinary council. Agbor Balla’s contract as instructor expired in 2019.It has not been renewed and shall not be renewed !”

The Vice-Chancellor of University of Buea, Professor Horace Manga terminated Agbor Nkongho’s contract, following pressure mounted on him by the Minister of State for Higher Education,Professor Jacques Fame Ndongo, to check the instructor’s alleged unprofessional activities on campus.

Following is the controversial exam question that led to Agbor Nkongho’s contract termination: “The Anglophone crisis since 2016 was caused by lawyers’ and teachers’ strikes.Assess the validity of this statement.(4O marks).

The said course exam was successfully written and evaluated-and students validated it; but it is unclear whether the UB administration will cancel the course exam and another exam set, now that the instructor has been sent away.

The exam question on Anglophone crisis pushed authorities to think that Agbor Nkongho , might have been radicalizing the the students he was teaching.

But he has maintained that before the summons ,which led to the termination of his contract,he had never been queried by any official of the institution.

“I have never been accused by the University authorties of politicizing my lectures or any activity there “, he said.

It would be recalled that Barrister Agbor Nkongho was President of Cameroon Anglophone Civil Society Consortium(CACSC),which coordinated civil disobedience and peaceful anti-government protests in 2016 and early 2017 as a way of forcing the Cameoon government grant and protect the rights of minority English-speaking Cameroonians,who have complained of gross marginalization for decades.

The 2016 anti-government protests morphed into what is today known as that the Anglohpne crisis.

Cameroon

Coronavirus: Mixed signals from Yaounde shows survival depends on you

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Earlier today Monday May 25th 2020, public health minister sent out a wake up call

He took to twitter to announce the worst is yet to come, saying we are entering a critical phase of the virus and more than ever before we need to respect government measures and keep social distancing to the best of our ability.

His message of social distancing and to avoid public places is consistent with his daily tweets to guard the public against contracting the deadly global pandemic.

The early morning tweet today though caries different underton, it signals we are yet to reach the peak of this virus,many more Cameroonians are likely to be infected and worst of all many more might die in the weeeks ahead especially as schools are planning to resume come June 1st 2020.

But his message of caution is in sharp contrast with government’s actions vis sa vis the fight against the virus

Government had rollback almost all the measures imposed in March to help curb the spread, deeming bars, hotels, restaurants, beeches, clubs and other services as essential and handed the burden of control back to business owners and citizens as the economy started to suffer under the weight of the lockdown.

What followed has been a spike in number of infected persons and deaths as many ignore social distancing and basic Hygienic calls

Same day government was announcing normalcy or near normalcy across the country, its public health minister was tweeting about the need for people to stay at home as much as they could, warning the risk of contracting the virus is higher and advising people to remain indoors and respect constant hygiene.

Today’s tweet on the eve of school resumption once again sadly reminds the population that the government is tasking them to fight for their very own survival amidst a deadly global pandemic

Cameroon has 4,890 infected cases this far, one of the highest in Africa.
1,865 have recovered while 165 persons have died according to latest official figures.

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Human Interest

Intelligent, nice and hardworking: A friend to Nkeng Lizette paints saint-like picture of deceased

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A very close friend to Nkeng Lizette, killed and abandoned at a student hostel in Buea has describe the girl as nice, hardworking and intelligent

Tifuh Sandrine who has known Lizette for years now was speaking to TeboPost this day May 25th 2020, saying her friend was anything but those she now reads on social media

She describe the deceased as reserved with strong facility values and says she was from a very comfortable home.

“ it’s pains me when I read online and Peoppe say she was dating men for me money” Tifuh told TeboPost before adding, she was from a very comfortable home, went to one of the most expensive universities in this country was was suppose to be abroad if not for coronavirus for her post graduate program

She wasn’t into men as people put it and wasn’t materialistic beceuse her family provided her with all her needs

Her remarks about the deceased is in sharp contrast to what has been trending on social media where reports say she was dating two boys for money and was allegedly killed by one of them

The corpse of Nkeng Lizette was found in a hostel in Buea on May 23 2020 while already at an advance stage of decomposition

Reports say she had been killed five days later by unidentified person(s).

She was immediately buried by the hygiene and sanitation unit of Buea council.

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Cameroon

June 1st School resumption: Teachers make demanding demands

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Teachers say they will Boycott June 1st School Resumption if Certain Conditions are not in Place by government to ensure smooth and safe teaching and learning  during the era of Covid-19

This is apparent from the document they issued during the week end where 19 Cameroon teachers syndicates including TAC and CATTU have declared that they will boycott the resumption of classes on June 1, 2020 if the conditions below are not met by the government

1. End of year exams be giving on basis of programs they have covered
2. Compulsory provision of sanitizer and face mask on campus
3. Risk allowance for teachers and allowance for overload
4. Not more than 24 students per class
4. Funds provided to schools to take care of health emergencies.
5. Remainder of school fees be paid to the schools among others

But amongst the numerous demands, the risk allowance for teachers has caught the eye of many Cameonians

Coming at a time when the nation like the rest of the world is suffering from the deadly pandemic, it’s only normal that teachers should fight for a safe learning space for their students and themselves

But demanding a risk allowance at a time when medics at the frontline are dying directly due to the virus and are yet to make any financial demands is seen by man as selfish in the part of the teachers

Many point to the fact that some of these teachers have not been teaching since 2016 when the Anglophone crisis started despite being paid their salaries in full and now are making strangulating demands before they go to class

Critics say Should government pay them risk allowance for teaching during the era or COVID-19, same allowance would have to be paid to all civil servants who risk their lives in one way or the other each day as they serve their nation.

Teachers they say are increasingly losing their sense of patriotism and all too often think only about their week being irrespective is the general interest.

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