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The Trouble With The Cameroons 

By Bouddih Adams — “The Trouble With Nigeria” is a booklet authored by Nigerian famous writer, and Africa’s foremost novelist, Chinua Achebe.

Achebe in The Trouble With Nigeria diagnosed, dissected the problems that plagued Africa’s most populous country, namely; the political and socio-economic woes the country was living through, in an effort to evoke and proffer remedies for the country’s dreams for democracy and development.

There are so many ills wrecking Africa’s otherwise most blessed country, the Cameroons. All of its blessings are despoiled by politics encapsulated in appointments. Biya alone knows the arithmetic of appointments.

Marafa, as Secretary General at the Presidency of the Republic, bossed Inoni who was Assistant Secretary General. Marafa was later appointed MINATD boss while Inoni was appointed Prime Minister. As PM, Inoni became Marafa’s boss. Marafa is said never to have regarded Inoni as his boss.

Following this mathematics known by him alone, Biya equally appoints young people who have just left school and found favours with him, to boss it over people who have put in several years of service to the State.

All the corruption, embezzlement, electoral fraud, backstabbing, underdevelopment and so on, are perpetrated by people who want to be appointed or to maintain their appointments.

From the ongoing, Cameroonians may start refusing appointments, because, the “disease that attacks cacao, is the same that attacks coffee”. If your child or relation is appointed, know that trouble has visited you.

Biya Disowns His Hangmen
These are all people who did all the dirty jobs to perpetrate Mr. Biya’s stay in power. From vote-buying to stuffing and hijacking of ballot boxes; through fixing of elections for Biya to win; to the campaign for the change of the constitution – all against the will of the people.

Indeed, any one of these people, including those still outside prison, would have wished to send to prison, any Cameroonian opposing Biya’s stay in power.

Actually, many of the members of the Biya regime have, at one moment or the other or in one place or the other, arranged the imprisonment of those opposed to the regime. What goes around has, therefore, come around. The irony is that Inoni is credited to have designed the “Operation Antelope” that sought to fight corruption and embezzlement in the public service. The new version of the Antelope, Operation Sparrow Hawk, was created under his auspices as Prime Minister.

My people have a proverb which says; “If you run a race on the back of a tiger, you may end up in its stomach.” In other words, the Biya regime is like a pig; when it is hungry and finds nothing to feed on, it eats its own children, for survival.

Wanted! President Of Government In Prison
Lapiro de Mbanga alias Ndinga Man’s prophetic song, «Tout le Monde à Kondengui», is being fulfilled.

But for the post of President of the Republic – which is virtually vacant as at now – what can be termed a “Government in prison” is almost complete in Kondengui and New Bell, including Secretaries General at the Presidency, General Managers of State corporations, Directors and other Government functionaries.

President Biya must have a stone where his heart would have been, in sending all his appointees to prison for purported embezzlement or corruption while in office. Purported because a school of thought holds that the people sent to prison or being tried are persons who nursed ambitions of plotting his ousting. They are known as G11, which means those who were planning for him to go, by bullet or ballot, by the October 2011 Presidential Election.

And this may be true given that the judicial investigations and inquiries are not independently done by the other arm of Government – the Judiciary – but by the Executive, President Biya himself.

They may be right, because, in spite of the talk of democracy, which among other things entails the independent judiciary running side by side with the other realms of the estate; the Executive and Legislature, Biya alone dictates who should be picked and tried for alleged embezzlement or corruption, thereby acting as party and judge at the same time.

Biya appoints these corrupt persons and embezzlers – in the first place. He should, thus, join them, to answer questions as to what he has been doing all this while that his appointees have been embezzling State funds and indulging in corruption.

Biya seems to spare nobody in this his struggle to stick to power. If he could nail Dieudonné Angoula, who signed his marriage with Chantal, as an intimate friend, then, no one is safe. Even his personal physician, Prof. Titus Edzoa, was not spared.

By the way, who is that Government minister or General Manager who has not embezzled State funds? Sending them to prison is just a charade, for, the money would rather have been recovered and used the well-being of Cameroonians and development.

Biya’s Perception Defective
The new tenants at Kondengui Maximum Security Prison; former Minister of the Interior, Marafa Hamidou Yaya and erstwhile Prime Minister, Ephraim Inoni, have only gone to complete an almost entire government, named at one time or the other, by Mr. Biya himself.

“If President Biya appoints people who all end up in prison, it means his judgment (perception) of the people before he appoints them, is defective,” observed Senior Citizen, Mola Njoh Litumbe, a couple of years ago in a TV interview.

Of course, if an entire government – Ministers and the Prime Minister – are in prison, it means the entire cabinet was a Government of thieves.

Another political watcher, one-time CRTV journalist, Larry Eyong Echaw, captures it better in this posting on the net: “When Ali Baba starts arresting his forty thieves … I am hoping that this is the beginning of the unravelling of the regime. Biya’s government is a kleptocracy – a government of thieves, for thieves, by thieves.”

It goes without saying that Ali Baba himself is the Chef Bandit in this macabre drama. By trying to buy a plane, was Mr. Biya not trying to undercut the World Bank which had advised against it, arguing that Cameroonians were to poor for him to afford such luxury?

It is now clear that, even membership or rank within the CPDM party, which was hitherto, deemed as immunity, seems no longer so.

All former members of government and CPDM militants must be having nightmares. Current members of government and CPDM militants must be having bad dreams for, no one knows tomorrow. Even those who sang halleluiah to Biya, morning, afternoon and evening, must be saving their voices for mourning and evening prayers in prison.

Nonetheless, the recent act in this drama of arrests, many say, is a gimmick to divert attention from the bogus electoral code, short of organising free, fair and credible elections, recently adopted by the crushing CPDM majority in Parliament.

Are We Together?

First published in The Post print edition no. 01338

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