By Andrew Nsoseka
Youth leaders and organisations in the Southwest Region have pleaded for an end to violence across the Anglophone Regions and the staging of real dialogue to arrest the crisis.
The youths made the appeal on June 8 in Buea during a mini-summit wherein the Anglophone Crisis, its impact on them and their communities came under scrutiny.
The young people met under the Youth Initiative for Inclusive Dialogue, YIID, pegged under LifeAID and directed by Ngen Yves Riyuh. Ngen is the National Coordinator of the YIID Programme.
Ngen regretted that, a peaceful strike which sparked off in 2016 has morphed into a full-fledged war. He said the crisis has resulted in suffering and insecurity across the two regions.
“Obviously, the blame game, hate speeches and lack of adequate spaces to constructively and objectively listen to each other, to various actors and stakeholders, communicate and exchange is doing more harm than good”. He lamented.
He noted that “…none of the attempted solutions have taken into consideration the active participation of young men and women. Perhaps we still live under the obsolete notion that ‘youths are only leaders of tomorrow”.
Ngen underscored that, over 65percent of the population of the Cameroon and Africa at large are youths. He observed that, youths are the ones keeping the struggle and sustaining the crisis. The youth leader stated that over 90percent of the frontline fighters, advocates and activists on both sides of the crisis are youths.
The youth leader said YIID was created after meetings, exchanges and working sessions with youths at home and abroad. He said the implementation of the YIID program shall go on through the localisation of the UNSCR 2250.
The project has five pillars of action. These include; Participation, protection, prevention, partnership and disengagement, and the African Union Youth for Peace program.
On the nature of the programme, he said it embodies three main complementary projects, comprising Youth Peacebuilding project to end the Anglophone crisis, localise UNSCR 2250 and AU Youth4Peace program, (YOP-RES 2250 Project). There is also the humanitarian Support Action project to reduce misery in Victims of the Anglophone Crisis, (HUSA Project). It also has the Socio-economic Empowerment and Integration project to prevent Gender Based Violence (GBV), Radicalisation and Insecurity for Victims of the Anglophone Crisis, (SEMI Project).
The consultations are expected to culminate with the organisation of an annual Anglophone Youth Consultative Conclave (AYCC) with an Intergenerational Joint Communiqué and a Youth Position Document as its products.
Other speakers at the event included MunjahVitalis, a crisis analyst and political observer. According to Munjah, the crisis is deep-rooted and cannot be resolved by denying its existence or use of military repression. He prescribed inclusive dialogue and institutional reforms.
Barrister Martina Ajie did a presentation on localising the UN Security Council and the AU Youth4Peace programme in Cameroon. Apostle Valery Nnogge lectured on the role of religious institution in resolving the crisis. Bochum Samuel talked on the role of Youths in fostering dialogue and peaceful solutions to the Anglophone crisis. Chelsea Tibi, and Ruddy Morfaw presented an advocacy speech and sketches at the conclave.