By Samira Edi
Finally, the silly season is here once more. Today is Parliamentary and Municipal elections Day in Cameroon. The CPDM Government has built up the hype, trying to polish their tarnished image leading up to these elections by unnecessarily canvassing for votes, with their litany of false promises. Over in America, they showed their sleight of hand with another blah talk of scholarships. In Cameroon, they made a song and dance about the imprisonment of one of their kind- Ondo Ndong, but how many more are still walking tall and free?Fela Kuti – Dog Eat Dog
I ask myself, what is the point of the Cameroon Government in leading the long-suffering electorate down the garden path again, in another exercise in futility? Poor Cameroonians will troop down to the polling stations to cast their hopeless votes in this symbolic charade 25 years going, the outcome of which is already known. After all, while other African countries are forging ahead, we seem stagnated; paddling in sludge that is now our hallmark. Is Biya trying to deceive the world or Cameroonians?
The last time we counted, there were 207 mushroom political parties. Only in a primitive banana republic of ignominious instability, inhabited by Neanderthals, would such chaotic stasis be permitted to flourish. Out of the 180 parliamentary seats, the CPDM, that repressive machinery managed to snatch 150 seats, with the remaining 30 tossed over to the desperate 206 opposition parties to fight over!!
Patriotic Cameroonians ought to be consternated by this continuous grand theft of their nation. Biya’s repressive Government has enfettered the country at the stake of disingenuousness, it should worry us. Concerned citizens should inundate foreign missions in Cameroon with an avalanche of petitions in order that they should revisit their bilateral relationships with Cameroon, diplomatically and economically. France, Britain, the USA, Canada and other African countries seem intrigued by the “mystical” powers with which Biya appears to have seamlessly bound high-thinking and well- educated people, without a whimper of disgruntlement.
But there is no mystery to this. Biya has so ensconced Cameroon in a cavern of anonymity that not much is known about the country. Not much has been collected on Cameroon as data. This fact was confirmed to me today when I listened to the BBC World Service. The reporter assigned to cover the elections made some jaw-dropping inaccuracies, which were interspersed with sparse truths; on the state of corruption, police harassment and Biya’s over-stay at Palais Etourdi. The brevity of the report was a clear indication that they don’t have much to grapple with on facts about Cameroon.
He mentioned that the main opposition party is in the two Anglophone provinces were in the Southwest (not true) and the Bamileke regions of the Western Province, (not true either.) He also said that Cameroon is a Bilingual country—well, that is a myth for which the Government can no longer pull the wool over our eyes. A vast swath of Cameroon is “Francophonized” officially or unofficially, even in the English speaking parts of the country. It is not easy getting accurate information from Cameroon as public records are also subject to the dysfunctions and secrecy that characterize everything else.
Back to the elections, we the people must take back the locus of control from the Biya Government which is completely clueless about social responsibility and social justice. Shame on us as a collective, for not being able to stand up as a united front to overhaul this dictatorial Government of no-talent and confounded mediocrity. Power is a heady drug for which Mr. Biya may have taken an overdose. He has an inflated sense of his own omnipotence. He is not accountable to anyone, that is why even the revenue from our oil remains a mystery. Nontheless, gripped by this hubris syndrome of incompetence, he still seems capable of motoring the country unstoppably down a chasm without effective opposition.
Our continuous silence indicates our complicity in this national conspiracy to beguile the country and destroy the national bequest of our progenitors. It is a gloomy prospect, thinking that the corrupt CPDM Government is going hold sway over Cameroonians for the next 7 years. Perish the thought! History will curse us, and it will be totally justified because we failed to stand up to a monster that has demonstrated grand larceny with naked impunity.
It calls for introspection and action. Biya needs to know how Cameroonians feel, without leaving the thinking task to the supposed "opposition" which is only a cracked mirror of the CPDM.