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Mukonje Chief Rebuffs Claims Of Dispute With Malende 

By Bouddih Adams

Chief Dr. Gabriel Ebanja of Mukonje has refuted allegations that his village has a boundary dispute with neighbouring Malende village in Kumba III Subdivision in the Southwest region.
“There is no dispute between Mukonje and Malende,” Chief Ebanja stated.

Ebanja was reacting to a claim, apparently made by the DO of Kumba III, Gilbert Guibai Baldena, at a meeting in Kumba to brainstorm on the site of the newly created HTTTC.
“The present DO of Kumba III convened a meeting on December 5, 2014, relating to the purported boundary conflict between Mukonje and Malende. Government officials sat with us and the voting that followed clearly showed that every square of land in Mukonje belongs to the chiefdom,” Chief Ebanja told The Post.

Earlier, on November 14, 2014, an ad hoc Subdivisional Commission had been set up to settle the purported boundary dispute between Mukonje and Malende.
The litigation settlement commission treated the matter on two separate occasions, on November 21 and December 14, 2014, according to an official document, which The Post procured.
From the statements offered by the various parties of the commission, before Malende chiefdom was created, it was a quarter under Mukonje chiefdom. Dschang Quarter, which the chief of Malende claims is under Malende is under Mukonje with well defined and known boundaries; that all evidence prove that the entire area (except Dipanda Camp) occupied today by CDC plantations and camps, is land that was transferred to the company by Mukonje community when Malende was still under Mukonje; that Malende wants to expand its area of command by claiming all the quarters within its vicinity (Dschang Quarter, Kompenda Camp, Laduma Camp, Dipanda Camp) without consulting neighbouring Mukonje.

In order to draw final conclusions and recommendations, and in respect to provisions of Article 8 of decree No. 78/322 of August 3, 1978, the local commission put to vote the various quarters and boundary both complainants laid claim to.

Out of 16 votes cast, 11 were for the fact that Dschang Quarter belongs to Mukonje chiefdom; 11 votes favoured that Laduma, Kompenda camps belong to Mukonje and 11 votes further supported the claim by the chief of Mukonje that the boundary between Mukonje and Malende chiefdoms along the Mabanda-Mukonje-Malende road should be fixed at “Drinking Water.”
The local commission concluded that the following quarters; Dschang, Laduma, Bikili, Palabongo, Kompenda and Mombo, are all in Mukonje chiefdom; the boundary between Mukonje and Malende is at “Drinking Water” and the boundary between Malende and Dschang Quarter is maintained at Komeh stream.

Finally, according to the commission, Malende chiefdom is bounded to the North by Komeh stream, to the South by Kompenda to the East by “Drinking Water” and to the West by Barombi Kang chiefdom.

Mukonje chiefdom was started by Nvon Ndoe Ekoko Mbock, grandfather of the present chief, in the 18th Century, “so Mukonje is about 200 years old, while Malende was a quarter in Mukonje documented by the then Assistant Divisional Officer of Kumba Province, Carr, in 1924, ,” said Chief Ebanja.

“And from then on, every land transaction in Mukonje has been documented. All those who acquired land in Mukonje were issued certificates of occupancy duly signed and stamp-dutied by the Cameroon Government. In 1948, the Balong tradition was documented in a constitution, our land laws stipulated and were approved by the then British Government.”
According to Chief Ebanja, the conditions of land acquisition in Mukonje area well spelt out and are only superseded by the Cameroon constitution on lands, “but the Malende people have attempted to take away my life because of our land; they have desecrated my palace by taking away the stool and they even brought down the national flag that was flying at my palace,” Chief Ebanja lamented.

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