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Activist Seizes Supreme Court To Jail President Biya 

By Yerima Kini Nsom

A political activist has seized the Supreme Court to slam a 20-year jail term on President Paul Biya for violating the Constitution of the country.

Woungly Massaga deposited his case file at the secretariat of the President of the Supreme Court, Justice Daniel Mekobe Sone at 9:00 am on January 27, 2016.

The activist wants the Supreme Court to take note that President Biya has violated many provisions of the 1996 Constitution, including article 66 that calls on State officials to declare their assets.
The complaint partly reads: “Through my lawyers, I have the honour to ask the judges of the Supreme Court to take note of the violation of the Constitution by President Paul Biya. It is for this reason that as a plaintiff, I am calling on you to slam a one-year imprison term on President Paul Biya each year for 20 years for violating the Constitution”.

The activist further appeals to the court to jail President Biya for 20 years and seize all his assets.
Woungly Massaga said in search of true justice in the case, he has enlisted the services of two prominent lawyers and erstwhile Bar Council Presidents, Barristers Ben Muna and Yondo Black.
“I am ready to face President Paul Biya in court for violating the Constitution for 20 years,” Woungly Massaga told reporters.

Woungly’s complaint to the Supreme Court is just one among elements of pressure being mounted on Biya to apply the provisions of article 66 of the 1996 Constitution.
Cameroon’s chapter of the international anti-corruption watchdog, Transparency International, TI, holds that the fight against corruption in the country would have gone a long way had Biya implemented article 66 of the Constitution.

Besides asking for the application of this provision of the Constitution, the Cameroon chapter leader of the TI, Barrister Charles Nguini, would want Cameroon to enact an anti-corruption law that would also provide for the protection of people who denounce acts of corruption in the country.

For one thing, it is 10 years since the National Assembly adopted the law on the declaration of assets by public officials. The law provides that public officials declare their assets before and after holding office. But what has stalled the application of the law that Parliament adopted in 2006, is the lack of the text of application that the President of the Republic is supposed to sign.

By virtue of the law, the President of the Republic also shoulders the responsibility for the creation of the commission that will be responsible for the declaration of assets.
The delay of the text of application for the law has fuelled talk to the effect that government lacks the political will to truly fight corruption.

To the TI, Biya ought to have demonstrated exemplary behaviour by declaring his assets first. They hold that the country’s authorities will have no moral authority to fight corruption if they do not declare their assets to justify the wealth they possess.

Meanwhile, government has always brandished the creation of the National Anti-corruption Commission, CONAC, the National Financial Investigation Agency, ANIF, the Audit Bench of the Supreme Court, the Special Criminal Court and the anti-corruption units in the Ministries as a demonstration of its political will.

But critics have dismissed this claim as a hoax.
Despite the efforts government claims to be making, corruption has remained rampant, making the country one of the most corrupt in the world.

The report of the TI last year exposed the police as one of the leading corrupt corps in the country.
A regular traveler on the Bamenda-Yaounde highway told The Post that the police checkpoints were no longer to check deviant road users and criminals but disguised tollgates wherein uniform officers collect bribes.

Pundits have lauded Woungly Massaga for seeking to acquire justice for the entire Cameroon nation by dragging the President to court over the non-application of article 66.
Twenty years after the adoption of the law, Biya is yet to create the Constitutional Council, Regional Councils and other institutions as provided for by the Constitution.

But the Minister of Communication, Issa Tchiroma Bakary, has argued that the 1996 Constitution stipulates that its provisions will be applied progressively.
He says those who are blaming Biya have no case because it does not give any specific deadlines for application of its provisions.