There is one truism about the gorgon that was born on February 11, 1961: it is terminally ill. What manifested for decades as a nagging malaise over socio-economic inequity has morphed into hate most vile – like a virulent cancer whose malignant cells have multiplied with infernal speed. Now recovery would be a miracle because by way of medication the surgeon-general has nothing but vials containing a more dangerous strain of the same pathogen – hate.
Far from stoking any fires, The Rambler searches in vain for something on which to build optimism. Certainly it is not to be found in the ruling party’s unexplained refusal to include on the parliamentary agenda a crisis that is degenerating into a bloody civil war with the makings of a pogrom. This is a regime that denied the existence of the so-called “Anglophone problem” for decades. Following the rapid escalation in the last year or so, they have come to admit it is not just a problem but now a crisis. And yet, what is it that could possibly stop a parliament that trumpets the indivisibility of the country from discussing a crisis as serious as this? One hears murmurs of party discipline. Is this some form of witchcraft or cultic enslavement? Is there some blood compact that binds everyone in the CPDM to ignore or systematically oppose anything that is likely to contravene the interest of their strong man? How else does one explain the fact that Southern Cameroonian MPs in that party join in blocking debate on a crisis in which they are losing hundreds of their kith and kin back home?
The thing got so baffling that one of them received a projectile on his head shot by a female Francophone MP from another opposition party. The poor thing could not humanly bring herself to deal with the sinister illogic of this man fighting against the interest of his home constituency.
A few days before, a Senator was reported as boasting that he demanded the heads of 30 Anglophones from his Colonel son currently on a crackdown assignment in Mamfe, adding that he needn’t fear any arraignment by the military tribunal since “le pays nous appartient” (we own the country). In a state of law, a senator who makes this kind of statement even as a joke in a bar, would have to resign once it becomes public knowledge. But here was this guy bellowing it out on the floor of the chamber itself, because he could not stand the SDF’s insistence on having the “Anglophone crisis” on the senate’s agenda.
Even in this country such a call for mass murder would have attracted an indictment as a crime against humanity if it had come from someone who does not enjoy ethnic immunity like Mr. Obam Samuel.
A similar call for the murder of Anglophones was recently reported to have been made in a TV broadcast by a young journalist from the same tribe and bearing the same name. Is this strange happenstance or they are family, with hate in their DNA? To everybody’s shock, this “mille-collines”-type journalist is not only still walking free but also still broadcasting. So, indeed, some are more Cameroonian than others, depending on what tribe they were born in. Some lives do matter, but not others. And this is a euphemism, if you listen to the testimonies of thousands of refugees from Mamfe now wintering in Nigeria.
Last week The Rambler conjectured that the rescinding of the Mamfe SDO’s order to evacuate the villages might be both a decoy for the local population and a ploy to distract international opinion from any intended pogrom. We turned out to have made a real crystal ball reading. The refugee testimonies and the images of the carnage are damning. Soldiers are trained and paid to kill. All it takes is an order from hierarchy. But what kind of army would allow soldiers to force men and women to strip in public and, as if that were not enough, demand that naked girls massage the boys’ manhood before the crowd, and then beat the hell out of them for having an erection as a result? Just imagine that this is happening in villages where, with few exceptions, the people are all family. The boys and girls subjected to such a sickening ordeal are thus brothers, sisters or cousins, with their parents looking on. When Biya was declaring war, is this the level of bestiality he had in mind, or is his army gone berserk as a result of all the apparent impunity it enjoys?
In any case, we are getting used to infra-human behavior from all these sick people. Our real preoccupation is the disgusting degree to which so-called Southern Cameroonian senators appear to have been emasculated. What crime would they possibly have committed, had they refused to sit in the same senate with someone who had just called for the murder of their constituents? Their silence speaks volumes of their weightlessness – the same so-called party discipline having reduced them to nonentities. On the line from that chamber of horrors, one of them admitted to the Rambler, “There is little we can do, because we have blacklegs among us.” That clearly means they dare not say what they think and feel, for fear of reprisals. In a proper country gutless individuals like these would never again be allowed to get anywhere near the legislature or have anything to do with political leadership. But don’t be surprised they are dreaming of reelection next year, even if their constituency will be a huge cemetery.