16 October 2017

Cameroon: Anglophone Crisis - PM Consults Professional Associations

President Biya's message of peace, unity and way forward at centre of audiences granted to Mezam-based professional associations yesterday October 16, 2017

The Prime Minister, Head of Government, Philemon Yang spent day two of his mission to the North West Region with Mezam-based professional associations. On the strength of President Biya's instructions, the Prime Minister delivered messages of peace, unity and hope to members of the associations who have suffered, slowed economic activities following the Anglophone Crisis that turned most ugly on September 22 and October 1, 2017 with street protests and confrontations that destroyed property and caused deaths. The checklist of the Prime Minister's audiences yesterday featured the Associations of Urban and inter urban transporters, traders associations, Bayam sellams, members of the chamber of Commerce, Teacher Trade Unions, Banks and Financial institutions. The talks were in-camera with no pressmen allowed in except the Prime Minister's close aides. It was a rare moment for the Prime Minister, Head of government to commune, consult and share President Biya's message to some people who have suffered the ugly moments of the Anglophone crisis. They exchanged ideas on the way forward for a return to normalcy with the Prime Minister Yang stressing the need for all to play front roles in educating and sensitising the population on virtues and values for a nation that progresses in peace and unity. Coming on the heels of the September 22, 2017 and October 1, 2017 protests that spread fear and uncertainty, the population of the North West has been impatient for genuine dialogue that appeases. Today, October 17, 2017 is expected to feature more audiences with traditional rulers, the Government Delegate to the Bamenda City Council and Mayors, religious leaders, members of parliament and senators.

La parole aux acteurs

Fai Victor, President: "Ghost Towns Not Helping Drivers"

North West Professional Drivers Union

"The North West Professional Drivers Union exchanged with the Prime Minister about problems that affect our sector. It was more the fact that ghost towns have not been helping business and most drivers do not circulate because the bumpy nature of roads in Bamenda make it difficult to make ends meet. The city has also been invaded by illegal fuel that is not the best for our taxis. The Prime Minister listened to us and advised for peace and unity in all that we do. He asked us to be part of sensitisation against messages and actions that do not help in the progress of the country."

Manka'a Caroline Ngwa: "We Discussed Commercial Motorcycle Sector"

Vice President, National Trade Union for Commercial Motorcycle Riders

"The National Trade Union for Commercial Motorcycle Riders was received by the Prime Minister during which session we presented problems. We discussed the importance of dialogue and understanding in times like this. We also agreed that ignorance plays a lot with manipulation of the sector and we acknowledged that education and sensitisation with good information is crucial. We appreciated the Prime Minister's exchange of ideas in an attempt for peace and normalcy to reign."

Njie Franklin Njie: "We Are Going To Preach Dialogue"

Fako III YCPDM President

"We should identify the parties and one is already the government. Now, who is the head of the other party from the Anglophone community for the dialogue to go through? I think that there should be real leaders and how should we get these leaders? So identifying the leaders in the Anglophone community is the starting point for serious negotiations or dialogue. Then identifying the problems which the Anglophones are complaining about and tackling them will end this problem. The full implementation of the 1996 constitution is part of solving the problems. Fortunately I am one of the members of the communities going to the villages. We are going to preach dialogue. No party should exploit the other when dialogue is engaged. The Anglophones and the government should listen to each other so that they come to a compromise."

Chief Eko Nganje Isaac: "We Shall Return To Total Peace After This Dialogue"

Traditional Ruler of Bokoko-Buea

"Dialogue should be between the people complaining and the government. There are people who matter in the society like civil society leaders, traditional leaders, and religious personalities. They should be engaged in talks and bring a lasting solution to this crisis. And when the dialogue ensues, there should be a level ground so that all dialogue should be frank and fair. We shall return to total peace after this dialogue"

Prof. Victor Julius Ngoh: "Church, Grassroots Leaders Should Be Consulted"

University don

"For any meaningful dialogue to succeed there must be minimum respect and trust for those concerned. The present delegation sent to the North West and South West Regions may be ill-advised. It is the same persons who have been sent there about the third time with the same result, failure. For those carrying the dialogue, they must have a certain degree of acceptance by the population. In this particular crisis, it should be the bottom-top approach that should be used. It should not be a political party affair. The members of the delegation should cut across political coloration. Government should get genuine representatives of the population and the government should not make as if it is a party affair. The Anglophone Crisis is above the North West and the South West Regions. It is now a national issue. Church authorities and grassroots leaders should be consulted."

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