Kah WALLA: The Biya Regime and the Government of Cameroon: You are the sole group responsible for the situation of our country

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To the Biya Regime and the Government of Cameroon:
You are the sole group responsible for the situation of our country. Thirty-five years ago, a prosperous, peaceful country was handed over to you. For over three decades you have led us down the path of increasing poverty and strife. Today we are on the brink of outright warfare. It is time for this to stop. There are immediate actions you as a regime must take to ensure that our country does not disintegrate completely.

OPEN LETTER TO CAMEROONIANS:

Fellow Cameroonians,
In an open letter to the President of the Republic in July 2017, the Cameroon People’s Party drew attention to the fact that six out of ten regions in our country were in a security crisis with dire consequences for the Cameroonian people. Since then the situation has deteriorated drastically. The number of Cameroonians who have lost their lives, who are illegally incarcerated, who are internally displaced and who have become refugees has increased ten, hundred and in some cases thousand-fold.

Our country is steadily and not so slowly slipping into anarchy. The citizens of Cameroon are paying an unacceptable price for the catastrophic governance of our country. The Time Is NOW! In a matter of weeks, days, hours, we will reach a point of no return.

Though the Biya Regime is responsible for leading us down this road to disaster, the generations to come will ask us “what did you DO, in response?” History will judge us, and we will have to answer.

Let us take stock of where we are as a nation.
In the Extreme North, Cameroonians continue to be endangered and killed by Boko Haram. The Biya Regime has been unable to address the root causes of this crisis for the past eight years. As a result, about 2000 Cameroonians have been killed. Over 240,000 Cameroonians are displaced from their homes with little or no assistance from Government. Human rights abuses continue with illegal incarceration, torture and intimidation of the population.

In the East, the crisis from the Central African Republic has spilled over in the form of armed banditry. Citizens are kidnapped, waylaid and robbed regularly. Hundreds of Cameroonians live in continuous fear and anxiety.
In the Adamawa and the North, the crises from the Extreme North and the East have spillover effects. Kidnappings and cattle raids have become common place. Cattle ranches and entire portions of land have been abandoned as citizens find themselves unable to secure their lives and their property in the face of armed groups.

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In the South West and North West, the crisis has reached acute proportions. Hundreds are dead including civilians and armed forces personnel, thousands are illegally incarcerated, we count today anywhere from 15,000 to 45,000 refugees. Attacks by armed groups multiply daily, retaliation by the armed forces results in the loss of innocent lives and entire villages being destroyed.

The social and economic effects of all of the above is disastrous. No Cameroonian is exempt. All of us are paying and will continue to pay for decades, the price for the reckless governance that has led our country to this point.


What can we do? Today we ask you to join your voice to ours in addressing two groups that are perpetrating violence in our country and putting the lives of Cameroonians in danger.
To the Biya Regime and the Government of Cameroon:
You are the sole group responsible for the situation of our country. Thirty-five years ago, a prosperous, peaceful country was handed over to you. For over three decades you have led us down the path of increasing poverty and strife. Today we are on the brink of outright warfare. It is time for this to stop. There are immediate actions you as a regime must take to ensure that our country does not disintegrate completely.

  1. You have affirmed that you are in possession of Sisiku Ayuk Tabe and 46 other leaders of the separatist movement in Cameroon. The legal process by which these leaders were transferred from Nigeria to Cameroon is unclear. The legal process by which you are holding them and by which they will be tried is unclear. This continuous flouting of the rule of law by your regime has inflamed and exacerbated the Anglophone Crisis to the extreme proportions it knows today.

We as Cameroonians demand that you immediately rectify this situation by doing the following:
• Immediately ensure that these leaders have access to their families and their lawyers. It is their right by Cameroonian law. Your continuous breaking of the law is creating tension and panic amongst their followers. This situation will lead to more conflict and bloodshed if it is not redressed immediately.
• Explain to Cameroonians which legal process was used to extradite these persons. The Government of Cameroon has over the past years regularly kidnapped and incarcerated its own citizens. Without explanation, we are forced to believe you have now resorted to international kidnapping.

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  1. During the past years, you have illegally arrested and continue to detain thousands of Cameroonians. Notably from the Extreme North, North West and South West regions. In the name of fighting Boko Haram or Anglophone Extremists, you have illegally deprived thousands of their fundamental rights as citizens denying them due legal process and for many, subjecting them to torture and inhumane conditions of detention. The most well-known are Ahmed Abba, Ivo Fomusoh, Nivelle Nfor, Azah Levis, Bibixy Mancho and Terrence Penn, but there are thousands more.

We as Cameroonians demand that you immediately rectify this situation by doing the following:
• Release all those arrested without due legal process immediately! You have already done indescribable damage to the lives of these thousands of young people and their families. Release them immediately so they can begin to heal and reconstruct their lives.

  1. The failure of this regime has taken us to the brink of war. Do not take us any further into war. Resign.
    To the Various Armed Groups Fighting in the North West and South West Regions
    While there is no question that it is the Biya Regime that introduced and instigated violence into the fight for Anglophone rights;

While there is no question that the State of Cameroon has used disproportionate force continuously for the past year in the South West and North West regions;
While it is clearly established that the Government of Cameroon has systematically and continuously targeted civilians and punished masses of innocents for crimes that were committed by a few;

There is also no question that your decision to use violence to fight for your rights has punished and continues to endanger the lives of the very Anglophones that you fight for.
All Anglophones be they separatists, federalists or even those attached to this current centrist model are agreed on the need to end discrimination and ensure that Anglophones enjoy their full rights as citizens.

Few Anglophones however, approve of the use of violence as a means to fight for these rights. You have imposed this violence upon us and the greatest victim is the Anglophone population. Before you began using violence Anglophones were making their voice heard through non-violent protests: marches, ghost towns, strikes, etc. It was not an easy fight, but the battle was on and all those standing for Anglophone rights had moral authority against a government that violates basic human rights. Since you have begun using violence, the Army has felt justified in multiplying its violence tenfold. Today Anglophones in their tens of thousands have lost their homes, are fleeing as refugees and displaced persons. Everyone knows when war starts. No one knows when it ends. Did you know that once a person becomes a refugee the average time spent in that status is anywhere from 4 to 10 years? You have placed Anglophones at the center of open warfare.

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We as Cameroonians ask that you immediately cease the use of violence in the fight for Anglophone rights.
• Those whose lives are placed in jeopardy through this use of violence are Anglophones. When will they rebuild those houses that have been burnt? Regain the livelihoods they have lost?
• The soldiers who have been killed are following orders. They have no power to make decisions that can change the fate of Anglophones. Some of them are Anglophones. These killings are resulting in great pain to innocents and have not advanced the Anglophone cause one iota.
• You are fighting a just cause with unjust means. Cease and desist from violence. Continue the fight non-violently.

Fellow Cameroonians,
Join us as we raise our voices to say: NO! to violence, whomever the author may be.

Join us as we say: YES! To the respect of basic human rights for all. YES! To the respect of due legal process in all arrests and detentions. YES! To freeing all unjustly arrested from the Extreme North, the North West and the South West. YES! To the departure of this failed regime that seems determined to sink us all with the ship it has been mismanaging for 35 years.

We shall not allow it to happen.
We Stand Up for our rights. We Stand Up for our fellow citizens. We Stand Up for our country. We Stand Up For Cameroon.

OPEN LETTER TO CAMEROONIANS
By Kah WALLA
Douala, 2nd February 2018

For Cameroon People’s Party
Kah Walla
National President

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