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Bloodshed In Cameroon As Activists Appeal To President Kagame

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Bloodshed In Cameroon As Activists Appeal To President Kagame

A Cameroonian lady was in Rwanda’s capital in October 2018, distributing petitions to Rwandan officials.

She shared printouts of the petition with Taarifa.

One of the copies was addressed to President Paul Kagame himself as Chairman of the African Union and in his capacity as the President of the Republic of Rwanda.

We cannot confirm whether President Kagame has read the letter yet.

The content of the letter was disturbing.

In the appeal, they cry about President Paul Biya’s massacre of the Ambazonians, after describing them as “terrorists” and “secessionists” those campaigning for the restoration of their independence.

The appeal also seeks help to stop the killings in what they described as a genocide.

One of the lines in the petition will get you perturbed.

“In a language reminiscent of the Rwanda Genocide, officials of Mr. Biya’s government have referred to Ambazonians as “rats”, “roaches”, “dogs”, “enemies in the house”, “secessionists” and “terrorists” and have pledged to treat them worse than Boko Haram Islamic extremists/terrorists.”

“We write to appeal for your help in addressing the root causes and bringing about a sustainable solution to the territorial dispute,” the letter addressed to President Kagame reads.

The lady, who requested not to be named for fear that her family and friends would be targeted and killed in her village, left Kigali and headed to USA.

She could not permit us to publish the conversation we held with her as well.

She put us in touch with Ntumfoyn Boh Herbert, the Spokesperson for the Movement for the Restoration of the Independence of Southern Cameroons, a movement that has joined effort with other five political movements fighting for the liberation of the Ambazonians.

Below is a lengthy exclusive interview describing the root cause of the conflict, the countries involved, why appeal to President Kagame and what the people of Amabazonia are doing to liberate themselves.

What is happening in Cameroon now, can you give us a brief idea of what the situation looks like?

Cameroon’s president for the past 36 years, Paul Biya, 85, was sworn into office on another seven-year term (his seventh oath of office) since he first took power on 6 November 1982. The election which Mr. Biya is credited with wining with over 71 percent of the vote is contested by the opposition. A former minister of justice, Prof. Maurice Kamto, has claimed victory, accused Biya of staging an election hold-up, invited the international community to organize a vote recount and pledged peaceful resistance while rejecting the outcome of the ballot. Some speculate that a post-election crisis may erupt, but others think it is unlikely, given the laissez faire attitude of the majority French-speaking population which participated in the election. The English-speaking part, renamed Ambazonia, is up in arms. Biya declared a war against pro-independence campaigners on this side on 30 November 2017, turning what was a non-violent movement into an armed movement, with several groups claiming to have taken up arms in self-defense. Ambazonians, as we are called, reject the government of Mr. Biya and are focused on campaigning for the restoration of the independence of Ambazonia.

Why are you then writing to President Kagame? How is he going to help?

We believe that Rwanda, the Rwandan people and the President of Rwanda hold the key to our freedom. You have had a unique and painful experience with the genocide in 1994. President Kagame holds the rotating presidency of the African Union and he is the only African president we know who can stand up and has stood up before to the French government. The recolonization of Ambazonia by the Republic of Cameroon is micro-managed from Paris, in our opinion.

Clarify this, are there two Cameroons?

There are, indeed, two Cameroons. The first is the Republic of Cameroon which was a United Nations French Trusteeship Territory until 1st January 1960 when it obtained independence from France within internationally-recognized boundaries that did not include Ambazonia. Twenty months later, the Southern Cameroons, a self-governing part of the United Nations British Trusteeship Territory since 1954 gained independence effective the 1st of October 1961. In the lead-up to independence, the United Nations, Britain and France made an offer for Southern Cameroons to form what was, in fact, a confederation of two states, equal in status. These two states, known at independence in 1961 as East Cameroon (French) and West Cameroon (English) functioned more or less as independent states, each of them complete with their own prime minister, police force, judiciary, legislature, education system, etc, from 1961 to 1972. The constitution in Article 47 forbid the making of any law that would change the form of the state. In 1971, the then dictator of Cameroon, Ahmadou Ahidjo, used a presidential decree to illegally fire the elected prime minister of West Cameroon, replacing him with a stooge in the role of prime minister. Six years earlier, he had collapsed all political parties into his one party and concentrated power in himself. Significantly, the people of Ambazonia voted against the referendum scrapping the union but were overwhelmed by the majority Francophone vote.

Was 1961 not merely the reunification of the Cameroons?

It was not. The German Cameroon – written as Kamerun under German colonization – was much bigger than the two Cameroons. The total surface area of the German empire in the heart of Africa included territories that are currently parts of Nigeria, all of Chad, all of the Central African Republic, all of Congo Republic, all of Southern Cameroons, all of the Republic of Cameroon, all of Gabon and all of Equatorial Guinea. Speaking of the reunification of that Kamerun would be advancing a major expansionist policy. By the way, if that is an argument that the world allows the Republic of Cameroon to make, it would be one that Nigeria could be entitled to make as well. Southern Cameroons aka Ambazonia was part of Nigeria for 44 years until 1953. The failure of the “union of states” between the Republic of Cameroon and Ambazonia would not be the first in history. The Gambia and Senegal went their separate ways when their union collapsed. Egypt and Syria went their separate ways when their union collapsed. So, too, did the member states of the former Union of Social Socialist Republic. So, too, did the member states of Yugoslavia.

Can you make that easier to understand?

Imagine that upon obtaining independence, Rwanda accepted to form a union of two states, equal in status with Burundi. Suppose that for 11 years, that union worked more or less well, with Rwanda and Burundi each running their own governance institutions. Now, imagine that after 11 years, the president of Burundi sent troops across the border into Rwanda and dismissed the elected prime minister of Rwanda, replacing him with a stooge of Bujumbura. Imagine further that Bujumbura dissolved all political parties in Rwanda, dissolved the parliament, disbanded the police, systematically appointed Burundians to lord it over Rwandans. Imagine further that the language of the police and armed forces in Rwanda was switched from Kinyarwanda to Kirundi. Imagine also that Kirundi was imposed in courts, in schools, and that the majority of doctors or judges that Rwandans had to go to were Kirundi speakers who were asking Rwandans to speak Kirundi. Now, imagine that Rwandans asked for a return to the agreement of the beginning and the response to that was for Burundi to declare war on Rwanda; and to call every Rwandan advocated such a position a terrorist. Imagine that they sent the army across the border; that they were systematically targeting and killing your people. This is what is happening to Ambazonians who have been forced to exercise their right to self-defense.

What was the basis for this behaviour? Who was the architect of this move?

The main complication we face today is the deafening silence of the world, beginning with the silence of the African Union, the United Nations, the USA and more. We are pleading with them to speak up and recognize that this is an both an identify crisis and a territorial dispute between two peoples, two nations who are recognized by such under international law. It cannot find a lasting solution if it is handled as a domestic Cameroono-Cameroonian matter. This is made worse by lack of media coverage of the unfolding genocidal violence. Whence our deep gratitude for your interest. The basis for the annexation is the rich nature of Ambazonia, which currently accounts for about 50 percent of the GDP of the Cameroons. Ambazonia has huge oil and gas reserves that are yet to be exploited. Countries like Britain that could have been working to correct the mistake of decolonization which they made leading to this crisis seem more focused on securing oil and gas deals than resolving the crisis. A British firm signed a 1.5 billion pounds deal in June 2018 and London is more interested in exploiting that than listening to the solution our people seek. In other words, the annexation and military occupation of Ambazonia is driven by the same greed that drove Iraq into invading Kuwait anew on claims that Kuwait was always a part of its territory. That attempted annexation was met by war: Desert Storm. France is to blame in our case, with Cameroon merely acting as an overseas colonial province of France. The French led a major campaign on the floor of the United Nations in 1961 to deny us independence, but their campaign did not prosper. They voted against our independence along with Cameroon and 21 other countries. Sadly, for them, 64 countries in all voted in favor of our independence – which we won – with ten countries abstaining. One of the reason both the French and Cameroon were opposed to our independence in 1961 is because, in hindsight, today’s recolonization was already premeditated at that time.

How much is France involved as we speak? Who is their entry point?

Biya and Macro have expressed friendly ties

We believe that France is neck-deep into the crime against humanity that is the continued annexation of Ambazonia. Some of our people acted as collaborators with the colonizers. For instance, and as I just explained, one Member of Parliament agreed with the then ruler of Cameroon, Ahmadou Ahidjo, to be appointed by decree the Prime Minister of West Cameroon as we were then called. That decree to unseat a prime minister who had been elected started the dictatorship on a territory, which was Africa’s first to know democratic elections in which the ruling party lost power to the opposition and handed over power in 1958.

Traitor? Was he alone? Why did he surrender his people?

France is still very deeply involved. They are pulling the strings in the background because they are the benefactors of the bulk of the oil and gas concessions. As you may recall, France was the leading financier of the Biafra War and did not stop providing arms to Biafra using Cameroon as the conduit state until General Gowon granted them the oil concessions in Biafra. The French, as you may know, refused to grant independence to its overseas territories. General de Gaulle forced African countries to accept what he called the French Community of Africa (CFA) complete with a currency, still minted in France, with obligations for African countries to keep their reserves in the French territory. A scandalous agreement signed with France on 26 December 1959 imposed on all former French territories to pay a colonial tax. It is still being paid to this day. The “Accords de Cooperation” as they were called oblige African countries formerly French ruled to grant France the right of first refusal for all their wealth. They impose on these countries the obligation to allow France to formulate their education system – to ensure it remains colonial, of course. Under those accords, former French territories, even as independent countries today, have to deposit 50 percent of their foreign reserves in the French treasury. Fifty percent! That quota used to be 100 percent before being lowered to 65 percent of the reserves and today to 50 percent. Former French colonies still have a currency minted in France and devalued at any time the French believe they should slash whatever debt they owe African countries. The name of the currency says all about the mentality. It is called the CFA franc or the Franc of the French African Colonies.

How do you get these details? Where is the evidence about the traitor and the French? This is a serious accusation! Right?

The traitor recognized his betrayal of Ambazonia before his passing into glory and he apologized publicly to Ambazonians at a major conference – the All Anglophone Conference of April 1993. He later made it a duty of his to travel back to the United Nations, along with other Ambazonian leaders, to demand that the world body reverse the harm he and the dictator had committed. The traitor might have been alone, but once he acted, he broke the spirit of resistance. It didn’t help that once it happened, the dictator then killed the former prime minister, deployed gendarmes across our territory, disbanded our police force and used blind repression to obtain submission. He also scrapped multiparty politics, forming a one party, which he used to ensure his coronation and his supreme reign. He only resigned from power after 25 years and only because he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. On the French, you just need to type up the words “Accords de cooperation franchise” on the Internet and you will be shocked by what you will discover. Otherwise, I can find a copy and share with you. The French have acted with more dishonesty and evil intent than we can discuss in several interviews, and I have never been happier for the people of Rwanda than to know that they decried their hypocrisy in Rwanda. I mean the French government and the French system, of course, not the French people who are absolutely charming. Guinea under Sekou Toure was lucky to escape. Look around Africa and you will notice that the majority of countries lagging in development and in good governance are former French colonies. Check out who is the world’s leading exporter of tropical wood – TROPICAL wood – and you will find out that it is France. France can only be the leader in a category like this from looting countries like yours and ours.

Have you engaged the French? Or their associates?

Yes, we have engaged the French. We have staged more rallies outside French embassies around the world than anywhere else. The French government has been lukewarm to non-engaging. President Macron has maintained criminal silence over what is happening in Ambazonia. We know that at the UN Security Council they are working feverishly to prevent a breakaway from happening or recognition of Ambazonia from happening. Our case is easy to resolve if it is endorsed by a Member State of the United Nations or of the African Union. We would like Rwanda, for example, to bring the matter before the United Nations General Assembly, not the United Nations Security Council. As you know, the Security Council is where the rights of poor people and poor nations go to die at the altar of the oversized power of veto-wielding powers like France. The General Assembly does not have veto. Which is why we want the matter brought there by a member country. The decision granting us independence was adopted and approved by the General Assembly. To date, we are the only country in the world that won independence through an independence plebiscite held on 11 February 1961 and through a United Nations General Assembly Resolution 1608(XV) of 21st April 1961 to be denied the right to enjoy our independence.

Have you considered forceful means?

Ambazonian troops

France’s associates and those Paris has “weaponized” to hold us in colonial bondage are the African stooges who serve as Governors (but are mistakenly called presidents) in former French colonies across Africa. They cannot turn against France because they will be ousted from power the same day they dare to. They must be intimidated by what happened to Sekou Toure, Thomas Sankara, Mariam Ngwabi, Gilles Olympio, Laurent Ggbabo, Gaddafi, etc.

Are you organized? If yes, is your cause well articulated and shared by the ordinary people? Can you candidly say you have the support of the masses or you need to mobilise them? What is the main ingredient of your cause?

We are very well organized although poorly funded. We have the overwhelming support of the masses. They have been staging civil disobedience campaigns marked by general strikes or “ghost town” operations held at least once every week – on Mondays, when nothing moves in our territory. When Cameroon organized presidential elections on Sunday, 7 October 2018, our people opposed and prevented any campaigns or elections from holding in our territory. Not a single one of the nine presidential candidates dared to campaign in our territory. Not even the Mr. Biya. That says how solidly behind us our people are. French media covering the elections within our territory reported that turnout and participation in the vote in our territory was 5 percent. Our people heeded our call to boycott the ballot. Officials of the electoral commission speaking to French media said participation on our territory was 0.5 percent but the French media inflated the number ten times. In the interview, you can hear the official give the number in English and the French reporter give 5 percent instead. On 30 November 2017, the president of Cameroon officially declared war against our people in an announcement broadcast on state radio and television. He called our people “terrorists” and “secessionists” for daring to request that they recognize that we are our own country. For several weeks after that, government forces massacred our people. Administrative and military officials called on our people to vacate villages or be considered “terrorists” and treated, in their words, worse than Boko Haram terrorists. They started razing entire villages from that moment. To date, they have burnt down to the ground over 140 villages in a scorched earth policy that violates the Geneva Conventions and the Laws of War. Over 6,000 people according to our estimates have been killed directly or indirectly by this war. Over one million are internally displaced. The UN says they are 300,000. We believe that over 100,000 have been driven into exile and refugee camps in neighboring Nigeria. The UN in Nigeria puts those figures at over 40,000. After remaining non-violent for many decades, some previously peaceful movements have formed armed wings, which have taken up arms in self-defense, they say. After a first few groups were formed, this was followed by a proliferation of groups. It is our belief now that no fewer than 20 armed groups operate in the territory, most of them rag tag rebel movements with little more than hunting guns, knives, bows and arrows and machetes. Despite the absence of sophisticated weapons, we fear that machetes can do as much harm as they did in your country during the 100-day period during which over one million people were slaughtered in the 1994 Genocide. We fear that we are next in line. In the coming weeks, we will be calling on our people to go out and vote an interim congress with powers to form a transition authority and a team of experts charged with negotiating peaceful separation. The vote will be both online for our people in the Diaspora and by ballot on our territory with our people defying their forces to organize this ballot. The other goals of the vote will be to authorize any world power willing to help prevent the unfolding genocidal violence to evoke the principle of Responsibility to Protect adopted by the UN after the Genocide in Rwanda to intervene in Ambazonia.

Do you have a strategic plan for resource mobilisation? How would be the apparatus look like?

We have been raising money on a haphazard way as our people grew in numbers in support of this. Mostly the Diaspora has led the way in resource mobilization. We are an estimated 16,000 in the three states surrounding the District of Columbia here in Washington alone. One of our groups mobilized more than $700,000 but still peanuts compared to the task at hand. Part of the reason resource mobilization has been small is because it has not gone beyond our people and our people have waited for us to vote into office a legitimate authority so they can donate once to the appropriate authority and not disperse energies, resources and get into donor fatigue too early. I will attach a document – an appeal which our sister has been delivering while visiting Rwanda and that we have tried to share with many countries, notably the 64 countries, which voted in favor of our independence.

Are you organised in groups? Are they political or social? What role has ARCC played? How big is it compared to others? What the arrangement between all of you?

ARCC re-groups six of the biggest political movements. Their leaders are at the end of the petition I have attached. ARCC is the biggest coalition but we will all be merging our forces into the interim congress we will be electing in the coming days. We are timing our vote to coincide with and defy the swearing in of the next president of Cameroon. There is a group that has proclaimed itself the interim government. We and other movements have refused to recognize them because they are not an emanation of the ballot. We have successfully convinced them to join in the vote for the interim congress, which will elect an executive team. So we expect our groups to be all together soon or working more closely together at least. There are a total of nine liberation movements. Six of them are members of ARCC and three of them are members of the interim government group.

What do you think is the most difficult challenge, obstacle or risk you face?

If you mean those of us leaders, I would say we are all a few hours away from being arrested, deported, jailed or assassinated. We all run the risk that France will table a resolution before the UN Security Council to name our movements as terrorists and us terrorists. We accept that danger of jail, possible death and definitely being put in the same category as Mandela when, as a freedom fighter, he was named a terrorist.

Who are your allies?

Our biggest supporters are the people of the world who cherish freedom and independence. It is an unfriendly world for people seeking self-determination. Our best allies so far are the courts of law. We won a landmark case against Cameroon at the African Union Court in Banjul, The Gambia, which recognized us as a people, separate from the people of French Cameroon, with a right to self-determination. Those are approximately the wordings of the ruling. A real and powerful one. Like all other people, we have no permanent enemies. As for our people, the biggest danger would be complacency or suffering so much repression that they chose living on in the house of slavery instead of fighting for total freedom. The odds are stacked against us. Yet, we will much rather die than give in to colonial rule or colonial domination under French Cameroon. Again, we are just one country away from the entire dispensation changing. If, tomorrow morning, Rwanda recognizes Ambazonia, it will begin the process of ending this annexation. So, we are working hard to find just one country. That is why partnership with journalists and media outlets is so important because our story is not known, talk less of our plight. We are the victims of what the African proverb says: so long as the hunter is the only historian, there are no stories celebrating the bravery and skillful escape of any deer not killed by the hunter. We have been called roaches, rats, dogs, enemies in the house and – not to own the name – but to appreciate its meaning, as roaches, we do not expect to be found innocent in a gathering of hens. Yet we must fight on. To that extent, I am delighted to meet you, to have this chat and to offer my support in reporting this story and others that you may want from the USA and that I can cover. We can work out details later, but that would be my fist offer.

Which countries or individuals do you count on? This maybe even off the record….

I do not mind going on the record. We are currently seeking the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice to recognize that Cameroon violated Article 4(b) of the African Union Constitutive Act which obliges all countries to respect their borders at independence and inherited from colonization. We currently count on the United States of America. The Congress of the USA has adopted two resolutions over the past two weeks only. The first by the House of Representatives calls for negotiations possibly under the direction of an international mediator. The second from the US Senate calls for negotiations as well and slams the government t of Cameroon for the violence and massacres. The German Parliament (Bundestag) adopted a resolution last week calling for a negotiated settlement. The British House of Commons has done he same. So, too, the Commonwealth, the African Union, the United Nations even the French foreign ministry. The United Nations Advisor on Genocide Prevention as well as the Lead Counsel at the International Criminal Court have said what is unfolding in Ambazonia is genocide for the ICC Lead Counsel and “very concerning” for the genocide prevention expert. The former US Under-Secretary of State for African Affairs, Herman Cohen, who negotiated independence for Eritrea from Ethiopia stands with us, offering his support and speaking out against what is going on in Ambazonia, including telling reporters that Cameroon will never be able to win the war against our people. In his case, though, he stops short of calling for the emergence of a new country. He is calling publicly for now for a return to the status of a federation of two states, equal in status. If this is what we get, equal in status will be interpreted by us to mean the same thing as independence because if we are two and equal, then it should follow that if they have an army, we should have one; if they have a government, we should have one; if they have a parliament, so too us. If they have embassies abroad, so too must we. If they have a currency, then so, too, it should be for us.

If you were to succeed, what would be the major points of you manifesto!

Ambazonia will be a parliamentary democracy, governed as a federation of at least 13 states and many counties. If my view were the only thing that would decide this, I would be campaigning for us to become a blend of the USA, UK, Ghana, South Africa, Germany and Rwanda modeled of governance. From the UK and Ghana, we will borrow the parliamentary democracy. No government position unless you win elections somewhere, have the appropriate competences and are cleared by parliament. From the USA, we will borrow the strong organization of states and counties. From South Africa, we will borrow the premiership system to enhance empowerment of minority communities. From Rwanda we will borrow the use and integration of traditional justice system and a reconciliation process that is cemented on economic growth and rebuilding from the ashes of a horrible genocide. From Germany, we will borrow the ceremonial presidency as an instrument of conflict resolution and mediation.

Infrastructure-wise, how is the status? Roads, hospitals, schools, Internet, water?

The only gift colonization has given us is to condemn our people to live in the 21st century under 16th century infrastructure. No roads. Hospitals are a cure worse than the disease in the sense that hospitals help our people to die faster. What with doctors who speak French to patients who speak and understand only English! Before you know it the disease being treated is the one the doctor thought he heard but which the patient never mentioned. We would be dependent on another country for electricity for instance, given that as part of destroying our government, they destroyed our companies including the electricity company. Schools are a mess but we believe we can rapidly remedy that, including through home schooling, accelerated and catch-up programs made necessary – even inevitable – by the fact that we have imposed a school boycott that is now entering its third year. The water our people drink cannot be called safe. And the Internet is curtailed for fear it would facilitate political activism and mobilization. Some optic fiber has been laid but not to nearly the extent needed to build an economy boasted by electronic transactions. For example, if us not available in schools. Teaching children today without Internet connection is like insisting to go on horseback in the age of the automobile. Much worse is an education today that is not tied to jobs and productive sectors of the economy. You get it from a system training more students in the English and French languages than as engineers and agronomists for example.

Do you think it’s a good idea to condemn French and front English? If the French and people affiliated with French or France feel you are hostile to the language, would that not be detrimental to you effort to secure independence?

We condemn the French system imposed as part of colonization and bragged about in France including by a number of French leaders as the “civilizing mission of colonization”. There is no such thing as civilization based on debasing other human beings. France prides itself as the birthplace of Human Rights and it is remarkable what ordinary French people battling tyranny won by storming the Bastille. If they are proud of their achievements as we think they ought to be they should be the first to applaud anyone who copies their example. What we condemn in the French and in the past history of the French (including colonization) we equally condemn if the British. It is the British who delivered us into the hands of the French. It is the British who can support a referendum for Scottish independence but thinks Ambazonia is condemned against the wishes of its people to live free. Language is not the problem here. If our conflict was linguistic, we would be in shattered bits because the Cameroons count over 250 languages. These languages get along without notice. And the reason they do but for two is that none of the heritages of each of these groups is threatened by the other. In the case of the Anglo-Saxon heritage that Ambazonia has and wants to preserve, we are outraged by efforts from French Cameroun condoned by France to destroy that.

How does ECOWAS and AU treat you?

Cameroon is not a member of ECOWAS. Ambazonia intends to become a member of ECOWAS and exit from the Central African Region (CEMAC). That means we will need to adopt a currency of our own – the Rwandan Franc, the Nigerian Naira, the German Mark, the South African Rand or the US dollar are all possible options. So, too, the Canadian dollar. We would go with any of these options, I think, until we can mint our own currency. The African Union had been awfully silent. We rest a lot of holes on President Kagame changing that silence and speaking up in defense of our people’s right to dignity, freedom and independence. Especially given the kind of genocidal violence our people need to escape from and that Rwanda could save us from by evoking their own painful experience.

Who in person have you spoken to in Rwanda?

To nobody, in person, so far except personal friends and officials whom we have reached only by sending letters. We would not hesitate to field a big ARCC delegation if we have firm appointments for audiences with Rwandan officials. I also closely follow, and retweet to my over 40,000 followers on Twitter some of the topics of significance to all Africans discussed by President Kagame, the First Lady of Rwanda and by members of government of Rwanda. I have tweeted a huge amount of stuff on Ambazonia to President Kagame since he took over the rotating presidency of the African Union. You can find me on Twitter @BohHerbert. Friendly relations with every nation, including with Cameroon and France with special privileges extended to citizens of these countries. An undertaking to make no changes to existing economic agreements unless they are shown to be cheating Ambazonia.

In West Africa, who is on your side?

We can probably count on The Gambia and to a very small extent on Benin, Guinea and Sierra Leone. Nigeria is sympathetic but not on board. They fear Cameroon making war by proxy by way of instigating something with Biafra. Courts based in both Nigeria and The Gambia have been favorable. Please, forgive me for not volunteering anymore information publicly as this would be detrimental for our goals.

How about the West? Any friends?

Let me begin by saying the same thing I just said. I cannot, unfortunately, discuss the full details publicly. In the name of those Ambazonians who, sadly, have already made the ultimate sacrifice; in the name of those who have paid with lost limbs for our freedom from recolonization; in the name of those holed up in jails and dungeons; in the name of those who now live in the wild of nearby bushes, forests and refugee camps. May I move anew that all those of us still walking free; that all those not yet arrested and thrown in jails; that all those of us truly working for this revolution owe a sacred duty to answer objectively to some very pertinent questions by taking the most appropriate action to advance our cause.

Consider the following: one, beyond the crowds we have drawn at demonstrations; beyond the staging of successful ghost towns campaigns and/or a boycott of the last presidential ballot; beyond a word-of-mouth claim that we can make and have made loudly that a majority of our people support restoration of independence, what concretely can we provide to the world (our American, British, French, and Canadian friends… to the African Union and the United Nations that independence is, indeed, the wish/will of our people?

Secondly, while some of us continue so stubbornly to be opposed to doing what we must do to collect and provide irrefutable proof of the overwhelming support we know our people have for restoration, how may I ask do we think the Americans, British, the United Nations should believe us (restorationists) not the others; like Biya and his “one, and indivisible” crowd or Agbor Nkongho, Cardinal Tumi, Ni John Fru Ndi and their crowd campaigning for federalism? Do we truly believe that the United Nations or the African Union will merely hold its finger up in the air and feel the direction of the political wind blowing in Ambazonia? If you were in their place and/or in the place of COA, FBI, State Department staff on this dossier would you just dismiss Biya, Fru Ndi and Co. in favor of restorationists? Being right is nothing if we the other thing we are is careless about proving our case. You don’t prove that you are a couple in divorce court with wedding pictures. You bring a marriage certificate. You don’t prove you passed GCE A-Levels by the grammar you speak. You produce the certificate. We don’t only claim that a majority of our people are with us. We produce proof to back up our claim. This is what we must do ourselves and for our cause. This is something we could have done since last year. Nobody walks into court to prove a case by bringing along claims or allegations. You gather your evidence and bring to prove your case. Ambazonians, we owe it to ourselves to prove by way of election that we accurately reflect the aspirations of our people of whom we are the most credible and legitimate spokespersons.

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