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Thousands Demonstrate In Lebialem Over Anglophone Marginalisation 

Lebialem denizens march with placards spelling out their grievances

Lebialem denizens march with placards spelling out their grievances

Thousands of Bangwas in Lebialem Division of the Southwest Region, December 1, took to the streets of Fontem in protest, cursing the Biya Government for bad faith and negligence of the Division and Anglophone marginalisation.

The population invoked the gods of Fontem and sent them after the Government, which they said has treated the people of Lebialem with levity and deception for close to four decades.

The population mourned that apart from being a politically orphaned Division in the country when it comes to appointments in Government, the Division has more or less been abandoned to itself in all facets of national life, despite being a stronghold of the ruling CPDM.

The people were further angered by the deplorable state of their road from Dschang to Fontem and the exorbitant transport fares demanded by drivers.

In unison, the people marched to the SDO’s Office and asked him to tell the Government to honour its social contract with the people before things get out of hand.

The leader of the demonstrators reminded the SDO of Lebialem that on July 30 this year, the Government made available FCFA 500 million for the renovation of Dschang-Fontem-Bakeba road. According to them, since then, nothing has been done on the road.

“People now pay FCFA10,000 to travel from Dschang to Fontem, a distance that used to cost FCFA 1,000,” one of the leader of the demonstrator said.

To him, “as it stands now, even the god’s of Lebialem cannot forgive the Government and the Contractor E& T Engineering for the damage they have done on the Lebialem population.”

The leader of the demonstrators said the transportation fare from Dschang to Fontem is worst in the history of Lebialem, because, no one has ever paid more than FCFA 2,500 for that distance.

“Many people have lost their lives this year in Lebialem because they were unable to be evacuated to referral hospitals due to the nature of the road. So, the Lebialem people are ready to go to any extent to make sure that the contractor is punished and their road maintained.

People bring ghost contractors here and award contracts to them when they lack the equipment and the will to execute such contracts. Enough is enough with this useless Government!”

In response, the SDO said the Minister of Public Contract is aware of the issue and that all the necessary measures are being taken to solve the problem.

He thanked the Lebialem people for protesting in a mature way and promised that, by mid-December, everything will be put in place.

By Sylvester Atemnkeng