Sammy Oke Akombi
On 10th February 2019, you rudely kidnapped me verbally. You may be wondering how someone could be kidnapped verbally. Let me explain. On that fateful day I was lying helplessly on a hospital bed and then in a very rude manner, your call came. It was an unfamiliar number and so understandably I could not pick it up. You insisted until I thought it could be someone in distress. I requested my wife who had come to attend to me in the hospital to take the call and pass it on to me.
Without the necessary civilities at the beginning of a phone call, you arrogantly asked why I had not read your messages. I was dumbfounded and so could not say anything. So you ordered me to go to my message box where you had lined up three messages. In the first one, you introduced yourself as the “Commanding Officer of the Mountain Lions of Fako,” a fierce unit of the “Ambazonian Defense Forces” and then you went on to state the purpose of your message: urgent request for a motorbike to help you carry out deadly missions. Before I could read all the messages, your call came through again demanding that I act immediately.
My wife got panicky, wondering at what to cope with, my helplessness on a hospital bed or the threats from an unknown caller? Switching off the phone would not make sense as we were expecting friendlier calls from people who know us and we know them. But your menacing call could not give us any respite. The messages poured in, in their numbers. One of them promised me death by being roasted alive and another to kill my entire family if I did not comply with your request. This is how I felt verbally kidnapped and the only way for a release was to comply with the request you had made – buy you a motorbike in order for you to carry out deadly missions. Physically and mentally weak my wife prevailed over me and we complied with your demands in cash in the hope that you would release me.
On 11th February the day after you had received the ransom, the nation rose up with the sad news that the District Hospital of Kumba had been set aflame, driving my thoughts to my aunt who had been hospitalized there for close to two months. It did not take me another five minutes to receive the news that she was one of the four victims who had been burnt to ashes in the fire. My grief overwhelmed my pain and for the rest of the day, my illness meant nothing to me. On 13th February your menacing calls and messages resumed and I thought I should explain my state of mind and health to you hoping you would understand. Unfortunately, it did not make any sense and the harassment persisted. I resolved to complain to the security agents at my own peril but the response was indifference. In one of your messages, you said you were fighting in order for me and my children to have a fatherland. In this regard, my contribution was imperative.
This message reminded me of an earlier call from someone I assume is your boss because he called himself General Satan. He too had asked for my financial contribution, saying that he and his boys were suffering in the bushes for our fatherland. And also another Commander like you whose name is Virus had promised beheading the Chief of my village if the elite of the village did not send their financial support for the struggle. I would like to observe that you work on assumptions. How would you on your own start a struggle and assume that everyone else must be part of that struggle. I and many others, who are terrorized by you and your likes: Generals Satan, Scorpion, Tiger and Commander Virus, do not believe in your struggle for a fatherland because God in his infinite mercy had already given us one. He did not give life and land to us humans so that we should fight and kill one another for it. There is no denying that we are His creation and like the good Father that He is, His intentions are that we live together in love and peace while respecting and helping one another. Your persistent harassment of my family has taken the calm and peace that we require.
You call yourself Commander Ebube but you are faceless. There’s nothing worse than constant threats from a faceless entity. This is happening not only to me and my family but also to a large number of the population of Cameroon, including school children who have been out of classrooms for close to three years. Given the ineffectiveness of security measures, the population has become so vulnerable that they act like zombies. It is not only you who have taken advantage of this but also bandits and corrupt individuals. In case your financial taps have run dry, I would like to advise that you rather make demands for assistance from those who had convinced you to take up arms against your God-given fatherland. A fatherland which you and I have always sworn by, whose worth, we say, no tongue can tell and have always pledged to win its welfare in toil, love and peace. If you Mr. Commander now talk of a different fatherland from the one we have always known and believed in then you are being hypocritical. Only hypocrites profess one thing and do the other. I would like to let you know that Cameroon as a nation should together fight its battles. If any group of the whole has been dislocated in personality, it is our collective responsibility to put things right, whether Anglophone or Francophone. Our brief life on earth is to straighten things for others, not in sweat and blood.
Mr. Commander Ebube, I would rather be a freeman in my grave than be subjected to the threats you are currently meting out on me and my family. Tell General Satan and Commander Virus that a struggle worthy of sympathy and success cannot be led by viruses and Satans.