Struggle for Independence: SCNC Signature Collection Gathers Steam
Activists printing T-Shirts to Celebrate October 1 in Bamenda, Buea
By Ashu Manfred with additional reports
The Southern Cameroons National Council (SCNC) has intensified the collection of signatures as the pressure group continues to press for independence of the erstwhile Southern Cameroons from the United Nations by leaving La Republique du Cameroun whom they have accused of breaking the political rules as agreed in Foumban in what is today popularly called the Foumban Accord.
The Star first read series of announcements posted by SCNC leaders based in the United States, UK and Nigeria on websites a few months ago requesting the collection of signatures from Southern Cameroonians for the struggle of Independence, arguing that La Republique du Cameroun treats its people as second class citizens by refusing them what rightly belongs to them in both man-made and natural resources from their own soil.
Apart from that, the regime in place has remained largely dictatorial with blame games of sidelining English Speaking Cameroonians in major State appointments. Signatures, The Star gathered are being secretly collected in Cameroon and in the Diaspora with people writing their names, penning their signatures and their identity card numbers on a purported United Nations document that will eventually lead to studies and granting of independence to the former British Colony of Southern Cameroons.
The Star further gathered that the United Nations has allegedly asked Anglophones in the Republic of Cameroon, to show proof of marginalization by collecting Two Million Signatures from English Speaking Cameroonians and present to the UN for eventual restoration of the Statehood of that British Colony, Southern Cameroons.
Ever since the launching of the exercise, Anglophones in their numbers have been clamouring to pen their names on the UN document, particularly the unemployed, disgruntled retired civil servants and villagers. The same goes with most Cameroonians living in the sanctuary. These are Cameroonians who travelled and seek asylum abroad. The Star reporter in Kumba has witnessed some people, especially men penning their names, names of their children above 18 years and wives on this document.
We have been informed that the exercise opened to all Anglophones resident anywhere in the country is particularly making waves in the South West and North West Regions of Cameroon. One of the persons, collecting the signatures told The Star that the rush by Anglophones writing their names and appending their signatures on the UN document portrays the extent to which Anglophones are determined to gain their independence. The Star has further gathered that some SCNC activists have been dispatched the villages and other enclaved nooks and crannies for the same purpose of the two Regions for the same purpose, particularly in the North West the fortress of SCNC in the country, thanks to Albert Mukong of late and the Chairman of the Social Democratic Front (SDF) Ni John Fru Ndi who accepted the rule as SCNC Adviser. Even in government circles, there are people like fearless Hon. Justice Ayah Paul Abine who has not mince words in his irresistible support for the pressure group ever since.
Unfortunately, the SCNC dream may never be realized because the group is fragmented into smaller groups with no defined mission. Some leaders have turned the group into money making ventures through the writing and presenting of SCNC documents in Courts abroad for asylum purposes and receiving huge sums of money from their clients. The Southern Cameroons faction known as Ambazonia is championing the collection of the signatures and the other factions are opposed because they are not at the forefront. SCNC may have a case but unless the battle is fought collectively, it may never be won. There are seven factional leaders of the SCNC with different appellations now living in the United States, Zambia, UK and Cameroon. Woooh!!!
After all it has been said that Together we stand, divided we fall.
Meantime ahead of the trial of the activists and the independence celebration, the government has already started the deployment of troops in Bamenda and Buea, The Star has learnt.