Sunday, February 20, 2011

Will Cameroon be the next Egypt?

Developments in Tunisia, and Egypt over the last few weeks brought Cameroon to my mind. Why does a similar rebellion against closed to three decades repression here still appear to be far-off dream? Though we may guess one or two answers, the rest is explained by the regime’s significantly more repressive model. Like Mubarak, President Biya, is a piker in the art of dictatorship. But no one believed it could ever happen in Tunisia, talk less of Egypt. The people did it - forcing their corrupt dictators out of office in ignominy.

By Yemti Harry Ndienla

Opposition political parties here have failed in all attempts to kick out the regime, and now they are ‘friends’. Even frontline opposition political party – The Social Democratic Front (SDF) is being accused of ‘sleeping with the devil’ – the ruling Cameroon Peoples Democratic Party (CPDM) Today the country is void of any true opposition political party to fight the corrupt regime thereby leaving power in the hands of the people. Now is the time. Cameroonians must take action as testament to the universal human yearning for liberty. The international community is very much looking forward to the grate people of this nation.

Besides elections, many are also concern about the way the government of president Biya, was approaching the eradication of corruption (systematic corruption was still very much unattended to) which is a major problem of development and governance in this great nation. Though government claims to have established mechanisms or processes in the functioning of the public services like those to eliminate abuses, they are hardly respected.

The government had on many occasions been challenged to make considerable effort in the two areas of electoral truthfulness and the eradication of corruptions in all it forms. And should she succeed in them; no doubt that magic door would have opened for more investment. Unfortunately, president Biya, is no doubt not willing to live up to the high standards of electoral reliability and government transparency that he advocated. Through his sway, parliament amended the country’s constitution paving way for him to remain in power for yet another 7 years.

The regime has a long and well established history of electoral hoax. He created ELECAM, handed it to the people, and then turned around to take it back from his people. Who is fooling who in Cameroon? The organ will still work with the network of government appointed official acting like wolf in sheep skin across the country. Though one may think things would change, at the same time many factors weaken their independence of action.

The CPDM regime has been notoriously unwilling to undertake other good governance reforms such as the separation of the court from the direct control of the minister of justice and effective decentralization for power sharing and administrative effectiveness. There are also severe problems of human rights.

Though Cameroonians are expected to go to the polls this year for a ‘new’ president, the result is clear. The British, US and Dutch embassies had in a joint statement in 2007 condemned the legislative and municipal elections of that year. But like a true detector, Biya, didn’t care. Meaning his government lacks position to make radical changes in a positive direction.

However, I refuse to believe it will take a near miracle to move the Biya regime from its undemocratic practices. The time is now. Take action!

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