You declared a war, then announce a humanitarian & reconstruction plan while the guns are still loading and bullets flying over our heads..
To president Biya…..
People complained about their conditions and the challenges they faced in a union they thought they were part of, you ignored them.
They organised themselves and presented the problems in a formal and a civilised manner, you assaulted and arrested them in a colonial style, banned their consortium and refused them any platform on which to talk or express their grievances, not even in the supposed parliament where they have their representatives.
They ignored your unjust laws and called on all to boycott, trigerring a civil disobedience. You opened the gates of your military barracks letting out your « wild unthamed dogs to descend on them, arresting, killing indescriminately, raping young girls and destroying their livelihood.
The helpless young men opted and stood up to defend their sisters, mothers and their communities, you hurriedly declared a war from an airport tarmac, without a clue of how to fight or win the war.
The world adviced you to dialogue, you ignored and snobbed at any such advice, declaring that the form of the state is non negotiable and will never dialogue with those you and your ministers call « terrorist ». You pushed harder with your war adventure, thinking it was going to be a quick win in a matter of weeks.
Weeks turned to months, months to a year now as we keep counting, the war and weaponary used gets more and more sophisticated. Your frustrated military turned to the civilian communities for massacres, in revenge of their loses forcing entire communities into the forest and many more across the border in search of shelter.
You intensified your assault, killing more, destroying businesses, banning and burning motor bikes, an industry that employed hundreds of thousands of the youth you had abandoned on the streets to fend for themselves.
We warned you and told you your forces do not have the monopoly of using fire power when a people are faced with an existential threat, and that your actions were radicalizing the youth. You ignored as usual.
Many of the helpless and now unemployed youth turned to self defense, inflicting untold loses on your forces. In desperation you turned to innocent communities, massacring and destroying in revenge.
We increased the loudness of our voices calling for dialogue, yet you ignored, pushing harder with your military offensive, deploying a full scorched-earth policy in order to intimidate the popultion and force them into submission and subsequently turn against the fighters. The population resisted your pain and moved further into the forest.
The international community raised an alert and points out your gross human right abuseses, accusing you of crimes against humanity. The UN declared a humanitarian crisis and suggested the need to protect the population as your government has failed to do so.
You panic and react irrationally, making more errors while refusing to dialogue. More and more armed groups keep emerging at evey twist you make.
With the groups multiplying daily and the sound of gun fire getting louder and louder, you have now announced a pseudo « marshal plan » to reconstruct the lives you have and continue to destroy.
You declared a war, then announced a humanitarian and reconstruction plan without declaring the end of the war or at least calling for a cease fire.
My question to you is; will the humanitarian and reconstruction plan be implemented while bullets are flying over heads?
The people no longer trust you and your government. You’ve lost all credibility in the eyes of the people. Who do you intent to spend the money on? Are you thinking of buying consciences and expanding your informants network á la Camerounaise style? Think again!
Or how do you really intend to spend the 12 Billion CFA when the affected communities are now a ghost of what they used to be with every nuke and cranny deserted?
Knowing your « elections » are around the corner and also knowing that those to manage your 12 Billion « marshal plan » fund are the same colonial officers and your campaign ministers as well resource persons, where will the separation line between the humanitarian funds and your campaign funds be drawn?
Was the announcement quickly made to deter and circumvent the full involvement of the UN whose Human Right organ has been prevented from stepping foot onto the conflict zone ever since the crisis started?
Mr. President, you can fool the world for as long as you wish to, but the conflict will remain for as long as the root causes are not addressed.
Changing sign boards across the regions from French to English, asking ministers and colonial officers to speak more English or eating achu on TV cameras will not resolve this problem.
No amount of gun fire will do either. So pull your head out of the sand, step aside and give way so those with the will and ability to do what is right while there is still some time left. (If at all there is still some time left).
Allow third parties to mediate as you and your goverment no longer have the sole authority to bring this matter to a peaceful end. All parties involved in this conflict will have to be on the table. It will not be selective and it will not be you to decide who has a seat on the table.
I hope you read and understand my letter without its content and intent getting lost in translation.
You messed up big time Mr president and it shall never be the same again. You pushed the people to rise. The people have risen and never to fall again.