Cameroon: The Promise of Coalitions!

Cameroonians reading newspapers on the street (file photo).

Many political parties have signed protocol agreements to work together to protect their votes, ensure representation in polling stations and vote one another's candidates.

As the first week of campaigns leading up to the February 9, 2020 legislative and council elec- tions draws to an end, political parties and their candidates are revising their strategies and correcting lapses noticed in the first days.

Prior to the effective start of the campaigns, many political parties signed agreements and the time is now to ensure their implementation with the peak being the election day. In Yaounde, three opposition political parties met at the Social Democratic Front (SDF) Secretariat for the Centre Region in Olezoa on the day of campaign launch, January 25, 2020 and signed agreements. The SDF and the United People for Social Renovation (PURS) signed protocol agreements to mutualise their efforts and means to protect their votes and prepare post-electoral disputes. They also agreed that the PURS members and supporters will vote SDF in the legislative election in Mfoundi Constituency, Yaounde I and Makenene Councils. The SDF officials and members on their part will vote the PURS list in the legislative election in Mbam et Inoubou Constituency and in councils where PURS will be running for the municipal election in the Centre Region. The Vice President of the SDF for the Centre Region, Aloys Parfait Mbvoum signed for the party, while the National Communication Secretary of PURS who is also list leader for legislative election in Mbam et Inoubou constituency, Bonono Bakota René signed for his party. The Union des populations du Cameroun (UPC) represented by its legislative election list leader for the Mfoundi Constituency, Afana Nyamballa Christ Mary and the SDF agreed to ensure total representation in polling stations in Mfoundi in order to protect their votes. Fomo Ngota, leader of the Cameroon Social Democratic Renaissance joined the SDF and is a subs tantive candidate on the SDF legislative election list for Mfoundi. Four opposition political parties also entered agreements in the Littoral Region. The Political Bureau member of the Cameroon Democratic Union (CDU), Koupit Adamou told Cameroon Tribune that the Cameroon Party for National Reconciliation (PCRN), PURS agreed to vote CDU in legislative election in Wouri Centre Constituency and Douala I Council. The SDF has also agreed to vote CDU in the same council. The parties in the agreement have to support PURS in the Douala IV Council, PCRN in Douala III and SDF in Douala II Council. As campaigns intensify, it is time to assess the level of implementation of the pre-polling phase of the agreements in order to ascertain their effectiveness in the polls. The purpose of political parties involved in the agreements is to ensure victory.

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