Cameroon – Anglophone crisis : Proposed Solutions at UN General Assembly Spurs Controversy

While the government is committed to the challenge of reconstruction, Felix Agbor Balla believes that discussion is needed. The Minister…

While the government is committed to the challenge of reconstruction, Felix Agbor Balla believes that discussion is needed.

The Minister of External Relations  on September 26th, 2022 addressed the Anglophone crisis during UN Genreral Assembly. Lejeune Mbella Mbella placed particular emphasis on government solutions to the security crisis that has already lasted six years. The balance sheet shows thousands of deaths, numerous destroyed infrastructures, thousands of refugees and displaced persons…

Among other responses, the representative of the Head of State Paul Biya recalled the actions undertaken. These include, for example, the organisation of the Great National Dialogue from 30 September to 4 October 2019. The acceleration and deepening of decentralisation; disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration are not left out. The member of the government did not forget the protection of territorial integrity.

For the diplomat, the “current challenge of the government is the continued implementation of the reconstruction of affected regions, through the Humanitarian Emergency Plan and the Development Plan developed in consultation with the UNDP (United Nations Development Programme) for the socio-economic restoration of the above-mentioned regions,” said Lejeune Mbella Mbella.

However, this statement does not coincide with the view of human rights defender Felix Agbor Balla. For him, three years after the Great National Dialogue, the crisis continues. “We note that nothing has changed in the two regions in security crisis since 2016. Kidnappings, armed attacks, during which civilians and soldiers are killed, continue in both regions,” he notes. The university lecturer gives an interview to the daily newspaper Le Jour published on Tuesday 27 September 2022.

The founder of the Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa makes proposals for a lasting peace in Cameroon. “I propose to the government to discuss with the separatist leaders who are in Cameroon with the aim of resolving the crisis definitively within the framework of informal meetings for example (…) The government can also consult members of civil society to find a definitive solution to this crisis. A reform of the republican institutions is also necessary,” he suggests.

Minrex also highlights that, in the context of the Great National Dialogue in 2019, the government met with civil society. The latter also took part in the work at the Yaounde Conference Centre. At the end of the dialogue, the option of decentralisation as a system of governance was adopted. Hence the vote and promulgation of the law on the general code of decentralised territorial authorities of 24 December 2019.