The Buea population was once more thrown into mourning, Thursday September 27, when masked military officers allegedly carried out the summary execution of seven denizens including a 70-year-old retired military officer in Babuti neighbourhood in Buea Town.
The killing of this young people in their prime, further triggered mass exodus of the people out of the Southwest Regional capital for fear of unexpected stormy days ahead.
The incident took place in the early hours of Thursday, September 27 when neighbours heard gunshots and the breaking of doors.
At about 6:00am, curious neighbours who had heard the gunshots tiptoed out to make sense of what had transpired in the early hours. They found lifeless bodies of young men as some others struggled in vain for survival in their last minutes. At the time of this report, The Post learnt that one of the victims who was taken to the hospital died in the late hours that same day.
In an attempt to investigate what actually transpired that day, those in the neighbourhood where the seven were killed, were reticent to talk, on the basis of security purposes.
Those we met, were only willing to direct us to the execution spot, but elected not to say a word of what they heard or saw.
Some of who witnessed the incident, as well as family relations of victims we were told, fled the neighbourhood in search of safer havens.
However, The Post succeeded to get the version of the story from a guardian, an Uncle, to one of the deceased, 26 year-old Alain Kometa who leaves behind two kids.
On what happened and how he got to know of the incident, our respondent narrated: “I heard the gunshots that early morning; I opened my door at about 7:am only to get news that my nephew has been killed. On arriving the scene, I met seven lifeless bodies, the atmosphere was tense and chaotic as families came to identify the corpse on the ground.
“The boys were not in a bar, the house they live in was broken into, they were brought out and killed. We reported to the police, on their arrival, their investigation process was slow and some procedures uncalled for as they demanded the presence of doctors and the State Counsel. After a lot of pressure from families, the Police Commissioner permitted the corpses to be taken to the mortuary.”
One of our sources residing in the Babuti neighbourhood, whose identity we concealed for security reasons bemoaned the attitudes of security officers whom he said drive around in white pickup vehicles. He revealed that earlier before the incident in his neighbourhood, he had an incident with soldiers he said had made an attempt on his life, prompting him to take personal security moves from those he said are supposed to be protecting him.
He told The Post that he had had a bad omen prior to the brutal execution in the neighbourhood, when officers in a white pickup stopped and made an attempt on his life which he miraculously dodged. “What happened in the neighbourhood earlier came as an omen to me the previous night. I was at the back of my house to attend to nature’s call when I heard them call me in an aggressive tone, then I noticed it was the military, with a white pickup. They called me to come, out of fear I chose to continue moving. I refused to go because I have heard stories that when you are called by the military with that particular white pickup, they ask for your identification and later kill you. Due to my refusal to heed their call, they fired gunshots to my direction but I was fortunate to have escaped, the bullets pierced through a neighbour’s pillar instead. Imagine if they shot me, who would have told my story? they could have tied funny red cloths and all sorts of things on me, and you will hear funny stories on how I was this or that. What did I do that they had to shoot at me?”
After the incident that happened in Babuti, many inhabitants could be seen evacuating the neighbourhood, while others could be seen reinforcing doors in prelude to the unknown. The scene of the incident still had thick blood stains and blood droplets of the victims.