Abouem à Tchoyi’s Proposed Solution To Anglophone Crisis

Opinion, Politics

David Abouem à Tchoyi is a proven statesman, co nsidering his attitude towards issues of national interest.

Shortly after the Anglophone Crisis escalated, Abouem à Tchoyi wrote a memo proposing the way forward for Cameroon, to give every citizen a sense of belonging and contribution to nation building, but it was apparently ignored by the authorities-that-be.

The thought-provoking  article, by David Abouem à Tchoyi, former Minister of Higher Education, former Secretary General at the Presidency, former Governor of the Northwest and Southwest, is even more pertinent now, given that what used to be known as the Cameroonian nation is at the brink of disintegration: a split between the two states, Southern Cameroons and Republic of Cameroun that came together in 1961 under a federal structure, on the one hand; and a split along cultural and ethnic lines, on the other hand.  

The very bilingual and knowledgeable Abouem à Tchoyi is today a member of the National Commission for Bilingualism and Multiculturalism, created by President Paul Biya.

Read him:

“Questioned on a television set on the evening of December 31, 2016, on the “Anglophone Question”, I realised that this issue was confused up by numerous false ideas. I, therefore, thought it a duty to write an article to put forward what I consider to be the truth, in all humility, without claiming to cover the entire subject and with even less of the claim to the monopoly of the truth.

It was from abroad that I followed with sadness the upheaval that has for some time now characterised the Northwest and southwest Regions. It has not been possible for me to access different information or all the official reactions to these sad events. But I have direct and close knowledge pertaining to these two Regions.

Is there an Anglophone problem in Cameroon? Yes, definitely. That is, if we understand by ‘Anglophone’ the populations that originate from the Northwest and Southwest Regions, those who live or had lived there, regardless of whether they speak English or not, whether they are indigenes or not, whether they are based there or not. That is effectively how the majority of Cameroonians perceive ‘Anglophones’ in Cameroon. Even those who consider whoever speaks the English Language to be Anglophone, however, cite only those from the Northwest and Southwest when called upon to deny certain claims, they resort to enumerate the posts occupied by Anglophones. And yet, all members of Government express themselves without difficulty in English. Are they all, therefore, Anglophones? For the purpose of simplicity, I will use the word ‘Francophone’ to refer to Cameroonians from the former State under French trusteeship.

Eruptions

One can remain deaf to appeals, close one’s eyes to evidence, remain in denial, or even believe, like the first Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Cameroon who, in responding to a question in 1964, made this memorable statement: “There is no Anglophone Problem; all Anglophones learn French very rapidly.” However, it is us all who could very quickly be overwhelmed by reality.

“It is also not an issue of living together. Is this not the Region that welcomed, with open arms, Cameroonians fleeing from forced labour? It was also this Region that provided refuge to numerous UPC members tracked by the colonial forces. Millions of men and women from different African countries live and prosper in it, in all harmony.”

What then is the problem? How is it framed? Why these recurrent eruptions in these two Regions sometimes from banal events as if the fire was smouldering beneath the ashes, waiting for the opportunity to burst out in fury? Because there is obviously an Anglophone Problem in Cameroon. It is not a problem between Anglophones and Francophones. There has never been a conflict opposing compatriots on the opposite borders of the Mungo, based on linguistic differences. It is not a rejection of what comes from Francophones Cameroons: no community in the Northwest and Southwest has ever opposed the practice of Bassa, Beti, Bamileke, Peuhl, Sawa or other Cameroon cultures on its territory.

It is not the part of our compatriots in these two Regions an obsessive mania and a weak wish to exalt the colonial Anglo-Saxon heritage. It is not, and this is very important – a desire to attack national unity if we ignore the manifestation of extremists on which I will return like those calling for secession. During the era of the Federal State, Cameroon was not less united than today. The national sentiment was actually stronger, perhaps because we had just re-conquered our liberty.

What then is this problem?

Six elements come to my mind:

  1. Criticism of the centralised State
  2. The transfer of decision centres to Yaoundé which is far from the populations and their problems.
  3. The non-respect of engagements regarding the equitable respect of cultures, institutional, legal and administrative powers.
  4. The non-respect of solemn promises made during the referendum campaign.
  5. The change of State’s name, replacing “the United Republic Cameroon” with “the Republic of Cameroon”
  6. The non-respect of bilingualism in the public sector whereas the constitution defines French and English language of equal weight.

I will now look at these differences in greater detail.

Criticism of the Centralised State

Many compatriots in West Cameroon currently experience a profound sentiment of nostalgia, malaise, frustration and discomfort in view of having been denuded of significant competence it exercise in full autonomy of which this part of the country has now been totally denuded.

This feeling was exacerbated with the passing of years after the change of the Unitary State. It is not at all mere nostalgia for a dream era that has been revolutionised. It is the comparison between the quality of governance practised since 1972 and  that which was in place in the federal State of West Cameroon which systematically leads a massive number of actors to assail the former and to regret the second and to desire its re-establishment. This feeling is real, even among those who ever knew self-government within West Cameroon as a federal State.  We can disparage ad infinitum the conclusions of the Foumban Conference of July 1961. It must be recognised that it accorded very important powers to federal States on a number of important issues that they were called to manage in full autonomy. The federal states had comprehensive and exclusive competence on important issues such as the interior, penitentiary administration, decentralisation and rural and community development, livestock, fishing, public works cooperatives, nursery and primary education water and energy, land and tenure management of natural resources, federal finances, and so on. Each federal State had its public service which it managed in a sovereign manner. That of West Cameroon was managed with the aid of the “public service commission,” a type of public service audit council, which had oversight over the objectivity of appointments as well as over the respect of deontology principles in the management of careers.

The management of natural resources by the future federal States was particularly sensitive in July 1961.  In separate meetings, J.N Foncha, S.T Muma and A.N Jua affirmed to me that this issue was the subject of harsh discussions with the delegation of the Republic of Cameroon in Foumban, and subsequently in private conversations with President Ahidjo. They did not wish that agreements that had previously been signed with France be applied to the Federal State of West Cameroon. According to them, it was equally from the perspective of sharing of revenues resulting from the exploitation of certain natural resources (especially mine and hydrocarbons) that they insisted on and obtained that the number of the population of each federal State be mentioned in the text of the federal constitution of September 1, 1961.

Cameroon has been considered a curiosity as from a constitutional perspective, having a strong presidential regime, and no counter-weight at federal level, but with a classic parliamentary regime vis-a-vise the federal states.

In East Cameroon, a classic Parliament could not function, despite the dispositions of this State’s constitution because of the unification or political parties and because President Ahidjo continued exercising a daily influence on the management of public affairs in this part of the territory which he managed as President of  the Republic before reunification.

The resignation letter of Paul Ahanda, a former Prime Minister of East Cameroon in which he stated that President Ahidjo would not allow him assume his responsibilities, should be remembered.

But in West Cameroon, Parliamentary democracy was fully exercised in respect of the State’s constitution. Elections were organised by an independent electoral commission created by a federal law of November 1961 – the very first in a country in which French was spoken.

In view of its composition, the mode of designation of its members and its functioning rules, it was really independent of the Executive and the Legislative. This was confirmed to me by its President, Justice Asonganyi, during a conversation in Bamenda.

The Government had to be invested by Parliament before taking office and it was responsible to the latter. Parliament, which was comprised of two Houses; the House of Assembly and the House of Chiefs, was jealous of its prerogatives. President Ahidjo himself, in spite of all his authority realised this on several occasions, especially in 1966.

In the wake of legislative elections organised that year, the KNDP possessed the greatest number of MPs in the House of Assembly.  But its President, J.N Foncha, who, until then, was Vice-President of the Federal Republic and Prime Minister of West Cameroon, could not cumulate these two functions in view of a recently voted law. President Ahidjo decided to have him replaced by Hon. S.T Muna who he considered more of a federalist than the No 2, Augustine Ngom Jua. However, Parliament sent him a firm message, indicating its opposition to the investiture of a Government led by a minority party.   Ahidjo was forced to appoint Hon. Augustine Ngom Jua, the Vice President of the KNDP whose leaning towards autonomy irritated him.

It was not long before incidents started occurring.  First of all, between the Prime Minister and the Federal Inspector of Administration for the Region of West Cameroon, whom we would refer to today as Governor – which he considered his territory? Subsequently, it was between the police – a federal force placed under the authority of the Prime Minister; and the national Gendarmerie – a federal force which almost came to blows with the army! The actors and witnesses of these incidents are still alive.

Frustrations

The fact that all these was eliminated without being replaced at the managerial level by something better, or even of the same quality, generated frustrations and claims whose effects we are still experiencing today. Appointments at the higher levels of the administration and in the para-public sector, for example, were no longer respected, a visible rationality, and Anglophones felt marginalised. While, until that moment, everything was happening on the spot for West Cameroon, one now had to go to Yaoundé to ‘follow documents’. Our compatriots in this part of the national territory came with the conviction that civil servants were effectively at the service of users. They were repelled by the reception they received from public agents who, regardless of the bilingual nature of the State, forced them to express themselves in hardly comprehensible French, often amid laugher and mockery.

Transfer of Decision Centres to Yaoundé

Decision centres that were formerly close to the populations and their problems, were all transferred far from the latter to be concentrated in Yaoundé.  The consequence was hyper-centralisation, exasperating delays, inefficiency in public management, the absence of accountability of managers vis-à-vis the populations they were intended to serve. Two examples sufficiently illustrate this:

First example: The government decided to centralise at the Civil Engineering National Park (PNMGC) in Yaoundé all the engineering material, possessed until then, by public works in regional and some divisional headquarters. All the machines in good conditions of the former Public Works Department, PWD, of West Cameroon were transferred to Yaoundé to be henceforth loaned out by the PNMGC. The agents of the PWD, who mastered seasonal variations, usually started road maintenance two or three rainfalls before the onset of the dry season to consolidate the road. They wanted to do the same thing the year after this centralisation. However, when they asked to rent the machines from the PNMGC, including those that belonged to them just a few months before, they received the response that the machines were engaged in other works, that some were in disrepair, that the document confirming the engagement of their expenditure had not yet been delivered by the Ministry of Finance, as well as a multitude of other reasons.

In view of the deplorable state of the road network, the population threatened to revolt violently. Ultimately, they had to resort to the President of the Republic after having knocked on all doors without success, for the beginning of a solution to this problem which was becoming explosive. Centralisation, when you hold us down!

 Second example: the transfer to the Cameroon National Water Company (SNEC) of water conveyances, until then managed by certain Councils. This decision by the Government was not explained to the population. However, the water conveyances had been realised through the funds of Councils and village communities, with or without the support of certain external partners. SNEC, which came in to manage the resources without investing a single franc, undertook as one of its first decisions, a reduction in the number or public taps.

In the town of Kumbo, the revolt almost turned into clashes. The CNU Mayor of the town tried explaining that the piping was financed by the beneficiary population itself and that the latter regularly paid their dues at the Council and that it was dangerous for the health of the population to deprive them of potable water… to no avail.  The word then rapidly spread. “Beware of the snake! It has come to bite and kill.” This was an ironic pun on the word SNEC.

The angry population was accused of “rebellion against established authority. They had to resort to the Government for a solution to be found to the problem of public taps in the hinterlands of the country. Centralisation, when you hold us down!

From cases of this nature and others, feelings of discontent grew. It is, of course, not a malicious wish of the central authority, but rather the opposition between two administrative cultures: one that is instinctively centralised and the other functioning by nature on the principle of responsibility at different hierarchical levels of organisations.

It is important to note that the Francophone populations which are suffering the same effects of this hyper-centralisation had not had the same reaction. Again, a culture problem. In effect, our Anglophone brothers could understand them without difficulty; Francophones pose many actions without realising that they are a problem to others- and this without any wicked objectives at all. I take the example of the names of our administrative districts.

During the creation of regions in 1962, administrative districts formerly known under the names of “Bamileke region” and “Bamoun region” were put together to constitute the administrative region of the West, which was effectively the West of East Cameroon. But the West of the Federal Territory was West Cameroon, known by the name of “West Cameroon”.  During the transformation of regions to provinces in 1972, that of the West became the West Province while East Cameroon disappeared! Our Country is, therefore, the only one in the world where the Northwest and Southwest are in contact!  While, as our teachers taught us, between the Northwest and the Southwest is the West.

To better understand what our Anglophone brothers feel, let us turn the tables around.  On January 1, 1960, Southern Cameroon became independent. It negotiated the conditions of reunification with Francophone Cameroon.  This reunification was realised on October 1, 1961. During the negotiations, Francophone Cameroon obtained the guarantee that the federal form of the State will forever be intangible. An article of the federal Constitution of September 1, 1961, consecrated this guarantee. The federal State was, however, brought to an end on May20, 1972, and a Unitary State was instituted. From Kribi to Ndikinimeke; from Batouri to Tibati; from Poli to Kousseri…. Populations are henceforth obliged to go to Buea to follow documents. They are forced to express themselves in English before haughty and pompous public agents who are quick to deride. Even those who have never learnt to speak English are obliged to stammer in scarcely comprehensible camfranglais…

Who could honestly claim that Francophones would be satisfied with such a situation to the point of complying and staying quiet? 

Non-Respect of Solemn Promises Made During the Referendum Campaign

The promises made during the campaign for ‘Yes’ in the referendum which led many voters to vote positive on May 20, 1972, have hardly been respected. This is particularly the case as regards development which, in these two Regions, had to be accelerated from the savings realised as a result of the suppression of federal institutions and organs.  The leaders of the federal Government and of the CNU party had effectively promised the tarring of roads, the construction of dams, the urbanisation of cities, the development of border zones among others. I personally took part in some of these speeches since I was part of the team of the CNU political Secretary and Federal Minister of Territorial Administration, (I was the Director of Territorial Organisation in the Ministry).

Non-respect of Engagement vis-à-vis the Equitable Respect of Cultures and Institutional, Legal and Administrative Traditions Inherited from Colonisation

Whether we like it or not, British colonisation, just like its French counterpart, produced a culture and institutional, legal managerial and administrative traditions. It also shaped ways of thinking and living.  It was, therefore, necessary, in spite of the end of the federal status, to equitably take into account his double heritage of the Anglo-Saxon and French systems. The State of Cameroon engaged to do so.

Following the introduction of the unitary State, the political discourse laid the emphasis on the bilingual and multicultural nature of the State. It was emphatically emphasised that taking into account the positive elements of our double colonial heritage would enrich the positive values of our multi-secular traditions and facilitate our march toward progress.  The National Council of Higher Education and Scientific Research as well as the National Council of Cultural Affairs organised in 1974, contributed in defining the profile of this new Cameroonian.  It was also one of the major engagements made by President Ahidjo to S.T Muna and J.N Foncha, when he consulted them regarding the immediate institution of a Unitary State before making his speech on May 6, 1972.  These two former Vice-Presidents of the Republic affirmed this to me during conversations in their homes.

In the eyes of some in the Northwest and Southwest, this engagement has not been respected.

Francophone compatriots often reproach their Anglophone brothers for their propensity, to refer in an almost obsessed manner to the Anglo-Saxon heritage, as if it is the colonial heritage that structures relations between communities that have for long been united by multiple links, even before colonisation. At the same time, they resort with delight to ‘their’ French colonial heritage. Our constitution, institutions, administrative organisation decentralisation system, financial system and the overwhelming majority of our regulatory and legislative texts… arise from our French colonial heritage. At times even, we engage in transpositions with some going as far as photocopying, like during the establishment of the National Elections Observatory, (ONEL).

However, we could have – and we still can – capitalise on this multicultural heritage to give our country more appropriate norms of better quality. Is our Criminal Procedure Code not eloquent evidence?

This inclination for institutional imitations has pushed protest movements such as (Cameroon Action Movement) to claim that Francophone Cameroon was carrying on by proxy the French colonisation of Western Cameroon. Having emerged in 1979 and probably based abroad, this movement circulated numerous tracts in Cameroon, with most coming from Canada and the United States. These tracts denounced the marginalisation of Anglophones treated as second class citizens; the Frenchification of Cameroon to the detriment of equality between the two colonial heritages; the transformation of the National Assembly into a simple recording chamber, contrary to what used to be the case in West Cameroon: excessive centralisation; the multiplicity and complexity of procedures; the abandonment of West Cameroon’s development priorities before unification, with the consequences being the slowing down of development in this part of the country, and so on.

Aware of the impact of these messages which were accumulating, President Ahidjo sent to Bamenda and Buea strong delegations composed of members of Government, the Political Bureau and the Central Committee of the CNU. Their goal was to establish the true state of affairs, to provide explanations to the populations to sensitise the latter regarding the pernicious nature of such messages and to reduce tension levels. Moreover, he set up a high level ad- hoc committee to reflect on the Anglophone problem.  

Only three members of this committee are still alive by the Grace of God; H.E Paul Biya, who was Prime Minister, Mrs. Dorothy Limunga Njeuma, who was Vice-Minister of National Education, and I who was Governor of the Northwest Province.  All the others are deceased. I will cite from memory; Solomon Tandeng Muna, President of the National Assembly and President of the Committee; the Ministers of State/Ministers Samuel Eboua; Sadou Daouda; Victor Ayissi Mvodo; Emmanuel Egbé Tabi; Namata Elangwe; Christain Songwe Bongwa; Joseph Chongwain Awunti; the MP and Administrative Secretary of the CNU, Thomas Ebongalame; the Permanent Secretary of National Defence, Samuel Kame; the Director General of the DIRDOC, Jean Fochive; the Governor of the Southwest, Fon Fosi Yakum Ntaw….

I was assigned Minute Secretary of this Committee. Professional ethics prevented me from divulging here the observations, conclusions and recommendations contained in our reports.  However, in respect of the historical truth, I must indicate that none of the members of the committee expressed the slightest doubt about the existence of an Anglophone Problem in Cameroon.
The work lasted for an entire week. After the reading of our report, the President of the Republic decided to individually receive each member of the committee. I remember that, on that occasion, he lengthily dwelled on his point of view on the different aspects of the issue before asking me for concrete proposals on the aspects specific to my province.

Recognised at the time as real by the highest authorities of the State, could the Anglophone Problem have disappeared as if by magic? Certainly not! The more so because certain issues have come to aggravate an already complex situation.

Change of Name of the State

(The replacement of the ‘United Republic of Cameroon’ with ‘the Republic of Cameroon’)

Upon acquiring independence, the former state under French trusteeship had taken the name of ‘the Republic of Cameroon’. It was with the Republic of Cameroon that the Southern Cameroons negotiated reunification conditions. With the coming of reunification, Republic of Cameroon became Federal State of East Cameroon while Southern Cameroons became the Federal State of West Cameroon.

The change in the State’s name in 1984 abandoning the United Republic of Cameroon and the return to Republic of Cameroon was perceived in many milieus as a simple gobbling up of the former West Cameroon by the former East Cameroon. The most pessimistic saw in this a clear desire to eliminate even at a symbolic level, the contribution of the former West Cameroon to reunification and to the construction of a larger nation.   

This change of name also provoked in many compatriots in the Northwest and Southwest provinces, the feeling of being a ‘distinct entity’, whose populations had, in a sovereign manner, chosen to unite with the brothers and sisters of another entity from which they had been separated, in order for the two to exist in harmony and equality. For the extremists, it was necessary not only to resist this ‘phagocytosis’, but also to perpetuate this ‘entity’ through a name that evoke the history of this part of the national territory. The name “Ambazonia” appeared to meet this requirement.

Where is this name from? Before Portuguese explorers reached the Wouri River, and gave it the name “Roi dos Cameroes”, they had stopped at the Limbe Bay. It was the day of Saint Ambroise according to the Julian Calendar (in 1492).  They therefore, called this bay, “Ambass Bahia”, meaning Ambroise’s Bay. Under English influence, the name became “Ambass Bay”. This is the origin of the dance whose spelling has been frenchified to become ‘ambass-bé’ or ambassibe’ or something like that.  However, the name Ambazonia was not acceptable to all, leading to the return of “Southern Cameroons.”

To be perfectly truthful, it is worth precising that those who inspired this change of name were of good faith. I discussed about this issue with some of them. Brilliant academicians, newly integrated into the strategic decision circle at the highest levels of the State, they were as yet little informed of the deeper realities of Cameroon. At no time did it occur to them to inconvenience some of their compatriots.  Their reasoning was rather as followings:

National unity had been the creed of the public authorities during the Federal State and the United Republic. The election of the President Paul Biya at the end of December 1983 indicated the entry of Cameroon into the National New Deal which postulated that we had moved from national unity to its superior phase, national integration. This transition represented genuine change which had to be reflected in the actual name of the State. The United Republic of Cameroon, therefore, had to become the Republic of Cameroon.

The draft law submitted to the National Assembly stated; ‘From the date of promulgation of the present law, the United Republic of Cameroon becomes the Republic of Cameroon’. It was a Parliamentary amendment which resulted in the current formulation; ‘ the United Republic of Cameroon takes the denomination of the Republic of Cameroon’. Those who inspired this project never realised that instead of a name change, it was actually a return to the name of the State of Cameroon under the French trusteeship upon its accession to independence twenty-five years before.

The submission of this draft law greatly moved numerous persons in the Northwest and Southwest  Provinces. In Buea, where I was serving at the time, I was personally questioned by dozens of people, including officials of the CNU who wanted to know the meaning and justification to the pre-reunification situation. In Yaoundé, Ministers of the two Anglophone Regions were all frustrated. Many are alive and can testify to this.

Certain MPs from the Northwest and Southwest even recommended open revolt and called for a negative vote. After long and robust exchanges with the Speaker of the National Assembly, S.T Muna, they adopted his position and that of other moderate MPs who thought it inadvisable to stage a revolt because of the circumstances at the time.  Their argument was both logical and patriotic. Realising that the conflict between the former President of the Republic and his successor had attained worrying proportions, they believed that a revolt in the Anglophone provinces at that point in time would have weakened the new President and provided support to those opposed to him.

April 6, 1984

They renounced revolt but urged the President of the National Assembly to draw the attention of the President of the Republic on the state of mind of the population in their electoral districts and to ask him to find with the wisdom of father of the nation, a solution satisfactory to all. The concerns regarding this law only faded due to the emergence during this troubled period of serious event; the condemnation  to death of the former President of the Republic and the mutiny of the Republican Guard on April 6, 1984. Everybody understood that, in such times, the people in their entirety had to close ranks behind their leaders.

Non-respect of Bilingualism in the Public Sector, whereas the Constitution defines French and English as the two Official Languages of Equal Value 

Of the six elements of the Anglophone Problem elaborated above; which cannot be solved?  None, absolutely none! So, what do we do?

History has launched a sublime challenge to Cameroonians; building from the peculiar journey of their country, a united State capable of constituting a model of integration of its various colonial heritages and its traditional multi-secular values. If it succeeds, it can become a model or even a reference for Anglophone, Francophone, Spanish-speaking and Portuguese-speaking countries of Africa. It could then become the epitome of Africa Unity. This challenge can be met. It must be met!

This can, however, only be done with humility through dialogue, consultation and mutual understanding. Neither the force or numbers nor military force can succeed. In effect, as it is well known, ‘opinions are like nails; the more we strike them, the deeper they sink.’

No Room for Error

Above all, let us not make the error of looking at this problem patronisingly. We will, thereby, be running the risk of having a rude awakening or our children and grand-children will have that experience.

I was abroad when I read the word Boko Haram for the first time in a journal. I subsequently demanded of a Nigerian consultant colleague information pertaining to the group.  With a derisive smile, he responded; “You know, it is just a small group of visionary fanatics.” In view of the thousands of dead, the hundreds of thousands of refugees and displaced persons, the hundreds of billions of FCFA used to fight them and the unspeakable suffering it continues to cause; nobody can talk of Boko Haram in such a manner today.  What has happened? Boko Haram has obtained external support.

Let us not wait for our compatriots who are uncomfortable and who are voicing their unease to, out of desperation, look for external support.  

We negotiate with criminals for the release of hostages! Let us discuss with all compatriots who see the need, to liberate Cameroon from threats and to release peace, stability and security.

In the 1960s in France, a united and ancient state, the Front de Liberation de la Bretagne (FLB) denounced what it called the ‘French Colonialism in Bretagne’.  As an intern in a divisional office in Western France, I saw some of these militants hoist the FLB flag in place of the French flag. Today, only historians talk of the FLB. It is not the result of a war. Or the imprisonment of FLB protagonists.  It is the consequences of a political offer, the result of a republican dialogue.

 A few years ago, I was conversing with Dr. Ngwang Gumne, one of the main leaders of the secessionists’ inclination, with whom I served in Bamenda. By chance, we happily came across each other in Sweden. At the end of two hours of discussion, he made this remark; ‘my brother, as no one is willing to listen to us, everybody will end up hearing us’.  I observed that he was still referring to me as his brother while through our discussion, I had argued against secession. With a smile he responded, it is you in Yaoundé who are not willing to listen to us.’

Let us listen to all the children of the fatherland, without prejudice as suggested by the President of the Republic in his message to the Nation on 31 December 2016. Let us offer all our compatriots frameworks for discussion and consultation to tackle problems without taking sides and to resolve them with sincerity and truth.

What is happening with the lawyers and teachers is going in the right direction. But let us not limit ourselves to addressing what are merely manifestations or even symptoms.  Let us comprehensively tackle in all its complexity the Anglophone problem. Let us bring satisfying and convincing solutions with courage and determination. All the citizens of our country will benefit from this.  For peace in justice! For the good of the nation! For the salvation of the fatherland.

David Abouem a Tchoyi

Consultant

Former Governor of the Southwest and Subsequently the Northwest;

Former Minister of Higher Education;

Former Secretary General at the Presidency of the Republic.

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