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Kah Walla Dumps SDF, Declares Presidential Candidature 

By Joe Dinga Pefok, Yerima Kini Nsom & Franca Sulem Yong Ma-ih*

The Chairperson of the Strategic Committee of the SDF, Edith Kabbang Walla, popularly known as Kah Walla, has resigned from the party and declared her intention to run for the 2011 presidential election. She made the declaration Saturday, October 23, while presiding over a rally at La Gaeite College campus in Yaounde.

Kah Walla: To become Cameroon’s first female President?

Kah Walla, who was also an SDF Councilor at the Douala I Urban Council, handed a copy of her resignation letter to the Littoral Provincial Chairman of the SDF, Hon. Jean Michel Nintcheu.

Before her resignation, Kah Walla had been at odds with NEC over her decision to encourage the population to participate in the ongoing voter registration under the canopy of her civil society group, Cameroon O`Bosso. It was an act that went contrary to the decision of the SDF asking militants to boycott the registration process being organised by ELECAM.

Claiming that the resignation would enable her devote her time to Cameroonians, Kah Walla said she will not militate in any party but run for the presidential race as an independent candidate. "The time is now for change to be effected in Cameroon. I believe that it is from above that I can change this country positively," she told the press. Kah Walla pledged to ignite constitutional and institutional reforms which would guarantee the independence of the National Assembly.

She promised further to institute electoral reforms to guarantee free and fair elections as well as ensure decentralisation to enable the equitable distribution of material and human resources. She is equally advocating for an independent judicial system accessible to all Cameroonians and economic policies that would energise the over 90,000 entrepreneurs in the country by giving them financial and technical assistance as well as a just taxation system.

She said she will ensure better health facilities, proper disposal of waste and the building of infrastructure in the form of roads, schools, hospitals, stadia, amongst others. Kah Walla then called on Cameroonians to join her, "to take over our power and become at last definitely independent. We must build new definitions of power, construct new definitions of leadership and construct new systems of governance.

"We have the will and the power today to be a true democracy with democratic principles, institutions and systems. We have all the resources we need to build a rich nation, rich in knowledge, rich in culture and rich in material goods."  Kah Walla said it is high time Cameroon stopped being a country in which resources are accessible only to a few elites who only squander them.

"The time is now to stop being a country which is number one in corruption, number one in mismanagement, number one in paying ridiculous sums of money in big hotels in the world, number one in its inability of managing its talents in music, sports, or mathematics….The time is now for Cameroon to truly become Africa in miniature," she mentioned.

Why I Resigned

Explaining the reason for her resignation from the SDF party, Kah Walla said she does not agree with the SDF mobilisation strategy. "Voting is the fundamental right of every Cameroonian citizen. No SDF militant was able to convince me that restricting people from registering in the electoral lists was the right thing to do," she said, adding that the SDF did not denounce the false accusations meted on her.

She, however, maintained that her resignation is not meant to save her reputation. While commenting on her relationship with the SDF, she said she has been in very good terms with John Fru Ndi for 21 years.

She further expressed her gratitude to the SDF Chairman for his immense contribution in the political history of Cameroon. "In my resignation letter to the SDF, I remained very open and I made known my desire to continue to effect the change which the party had always hoped for."

Kah Walla’s Case To NEC

The Post learnt that Kah Walla resigned from the SDF at the time that the dreadful article 8.2 of the party was hovering over her for making declarations that are contrary to the position of the party.  She had also fallen out of favour with the Executive Committee of the Douala I Electoral District for having shunned a summons by the Disciplinary Committee on what it termed anti-party activities and for allegedly mismanaging party funds.

The Executive Committee then informed the Littoral Provincial Chairman of the SDF, Hon Jean Michel Nintcheu, that he would take along  Kah Walla`s file to the next NEC meeting billed for October 30. It was generally believed that she was going to be dismissed from the party.

Threat Of Court Action 

In his reaction to Kah Walla’s resignation, the Chairman of the Douala I Electoral District of the SDF, Adolphe Same Lottin, argued that Kah Walla hurriedly resigned from the party before the October 30 NEC meeting.

He said she did this in order to avoid the embarrassment of facing evidences that his bureau intends to present to NEC to prove that she handled the 2007 campaign funds which was donated by friends and sympathisers of the party, in an "opaque and single-handed manner".
Lottin said that in spite of her resignation, the Executive Committee will still send her case file to the NEC meeting.

He insisted that his bureau will want the SDF hierarchy and the entire party to know the truth of the campaign funds that Kah Walla collected on behalf of the party.  The Electoral District Chairman described as spurious the declaration Kah Walla made at her press conference, claiming that the money was put into an account at Union Bank, and that they both signed for the withdrawals.

Lottin said Kah Walla had, by her declaration, defamed him, and vowed to take the matter to any extent necessary, in order to clear his name. Lottin threatened that if Kah Walla fails to account for the funds, the Douala I Electoral District will be obliged to drag her to court on charges of embezzlement.

Observers are wondering whether Kah Walla will succeed in pushing through her candidacy as an independent candidate given the very tough conditions provided for by the law, one of which is to provide 300 signatures of parliamentarians, councilors and first class chiefs from all over the country; 30 signatures from each Region.

*(UNIYAO I Student On Internship)

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