By Andrew Nsoseka
Cameroon’s President, Paul Biya, has of recent, taken to twitter to unleash a couple of tweets, calling on Cameroonians to forgive and forget, as well as imbibe patriotic values in order to build a peaceful country.
The tweets which are coming at a time when the Biya regime has had its image soiled in the international arena, is surprising to many, who hardly heard from the President, who seldom speaks.
Biya’s twitter feed now loaded with ‘conscience talk’ has been known over the years, to be a platform reserved for condolence messages to victims of disasters in other countries, as well an outlet for wishing other countries well on their national days. The outlet too, acted as a platform for Biya’s numerous decrees, through which he has governed.
What Could Have Inspired Biya’s ‘Twitter Patriotism’?
Keen analysts are already asking what could have inspired the President’s consistent preaching on twitter. Some, relating his outing to the ongoing armed conflict in Anglophone Cameroon, have been quick to suggest that the pressure from foreign powers have pushed Biya to try to woo the general population that have increasingly become agitated. Others claim that Biya is trying to provide a smokescreen for the actions of the military in the troubled regions, given that while he preaches forgiveness and reconciliation, the military under his command, is actively engaged in burning villages and ‘neutralising’ those termed secessionists in the Anglophone regions. People have also called out the president for preaching forgiveness and democracy, while his political rivals are intimidated and locked up by his regime.
A Collection of President Biya’s Tweets So Far
“Be the determined architects of national integration. Be the models of tolerance and loyalty. Be the shields of our institutions and our democracy. Together, let us build a Cameroonian Nation that is one and indivisible.”
What matters most, what is essential, is the unity of Cameroon. In Cameroon, there is neither a tribe of rulers nor a tribe of subjects. There is just one power: the power of the Cameroonian people.
“We want to mould a Cameroon which draws positively from our diversities and specificities. That is the price we must pay for an authentic and original Cameroonian identity which all of us will take pride in”
“Let us shed our resentment, dissension and rifts between us. Let us remain faithful to our ideal of Unity and look ahead with confidence. It is on this condition that we will be able to live in peace.”
“Let us be aware of our collective responsibility to build a united and prosperous Cameroon. Cameroon needs all our efforts”
“Dear compatriots, Irrespective of your tribe, religion and political convictions, you are all sons and daughters of one and the same country”
“We should have the courage to overcome our passions so as to highlight the essential, which is to advance together, hand in hand, towards achieving our national goals”
“The essential thing today is to forgive & to forget, to work together towards a common goal. We cannot, at one & the same time, look towards the future & live in the past. Mutual forgiveness is the path to lasting peace.”
“Each ethnic group has its place within the Nation. Each ethnic group has a contribution to make to nation-building. That is our strength. That is the catalyst of our unity.”
“Our differences must not distance us from one another. They should bring us together. We must make the best of them for ourselves and for our dear Fatherland.”
“Do not be misled notably by birds of ill omen, dreamers and enthusiasts of virtual calls for destabilization.”
“Make good use of freedom. People can fully express themselves without taking to the street, without causing destruction and without looting.”
“Cameroonians, let us not destroy our achievements! Let us not engage in sterile wrangling which distorts, tarnishes and kills democracy. Let us focus our action on the stakes of the Nation.”
“Democracy must not breed hatred, demagogy, and factionalism which corrupts and perturbs social peace. Democracy is a spirit of criticism, and not criticism for its own sake.”
“Cameroonians, the advent of democracy should not be a pretext for the settling of scores, for slander, for spreading false information, and for all sorts of denigration.”
“Cameroonians, Avoid the easy way out. Do not cheat! Show the right example.”
“Cameroon really needs true national Unity, it should not be the victim of tribalism, nepotism, carelessness and corruption. We must all fight effectively against such ills which easily undermine an entire Nation.”
“I cannot stop expressing conviction that a great destiny awaits Cameroon… “Why are we Cameroonians? What makes us proud to be Cameroonians? What type of Cameroon do we want for our children?”
“We can build something long-lasting if we put our hearts, minds and hands together. Better still, we can build a strong and prosperous Cameroon, united and dynamic.”
“I request you to work relentlessly & with abnegation so as to be always deserving of the fatherland & build in peace a State which is not a mere juxtaposition of ethnic, religious or language groups, but a real national community.”
“We have only one Fatherland. It is our duty to defend it and lead it; all of us together, on the paths of greatness and prosperity for everybody.”
The tweets are accompanied by the hastags