By Njodzeka Danhatu
Members of the Southwest Chiefs’ Conference, SWECC, who have been experiencing internal squabbles over the leadership of the association for some years now, Friday, March 15, sued for peace and elected a new executive to pilot the affairs of the association.
During the Elective General Assembly that held at the Buea Mountain Hotel, the custodians of the culture and tradition of the people, appealed to Government to rescue the Region, which, they said, is on the verge of economic collapse because of the raging Anglophone Crisis.
They pressed for peace, reconciliation and forgiveness within the association, especially as in the build up to the assembly and the election the association had been embroiled by an imbroglio that almost fragmented it.
Prior to the Elective General Assembly in Buea, the Chiefs of Fako, under the umbrella of the Fako Chiefs Conference, met in Yaounde and designated Chief Martin Mafany Njie as their candidate for the SWECC Presidency.
Speaking in Buea after his endorsement, the newly elected President, Chief Martin Mafany Njie, decried the wanton killings in the Southwest Region.
“We have lost so many lives and property. This is the moment we must prove that the Southwest has a focus and is moving towards our unity in diversity,” he added.
To him, there can be no development in a State at war. He pledged his support to work with the good will people for peace to return.
The Southwest Chiefs’ position on peace is not different from that of the Prime Minister, who, himself, is also a Chief. Representing the Prime Minister, Chief Dr Joseph Dion Ngute, at the conclave, the Director of Cabinet at the Prime Minister’s Office, Confiance Ebune Balungeli, said that the PM counts on the Chiefs for the speedy return of peace. So that children, who have armed themselves against the State, can return from the bushes.
“Until the traditional rulers return to their palaces, he (the PM) won’t say peace has returned,” Ebune stated.
Since the Conference was aimed at electing the new executive bureau of the association, the following were elected to pilot the affairs of SWECC.
President: Chief Martin Mafany Njie
Vice President: Rev Chief Dr. Molindo Andrew Ekoka
Secretary General: Chief Dr Robinson Tanyi
Assistant Secretary General: Chief Joseph Ekwoge Treasurer: Chief Dr. Mokube Amadou
Financial Secretary: Senator Fon Lekunze
Assistant Financial Secretary: Chief Njabe Ngube II
Publicity Secretary: Chief Ellis Eseme
Assistant Publicity Secretary: Chief Efamba Nyanya
Social Secretary: Chief Samuel Lyonga
Assistant Social Secretary: Chief Graham Oponde
Auditor: Fon Fossungu
Protocol: Chief Dr Tabe Tah
Legal Advisers: Chiefs Justice Bechem and Teddy Mokwe
After commissioning the new executive, the SWECC members beseeched the Government to rescue the Region’s agro-industrial giants like the CDC and PAMOL. They also called for continuous sensitisation and dialogue in view of an immediate cessation of hostilities in the Southwest Regions.
They further demanded the rehabilitation of the Kumba District Hospital which, they requested, should be raised to the status to a Reference Annex Regional Hospital. The Chiefs equally called on the Government to effectively re-launch the English Edition of the Daily Newspaper Cameroon Tribune.
At the close of their deliberations, the Chiefs presented a motion of support to President Paul Biya for appointing sons and daughters of the Region to Ministerial Positions, especially the Prime Minister.
They lauded the restructuring of the Cameroon General Certificate of Education, GCE Board and praised the First Lady for her humanitarian work.