BY ELAH GEOFREY MBONG
The Anglophone crisis that started with the Common Law Lawyers and Anglophone teachers strike on the marginalisation of the Anglophones better still Southern Cameroons in 2016 has gradually been transformed into an armed conflict.
As tension rages on now for close to three years in the restive regions of the North West and South West, several calls have been made for all the protagonists to embrace peace for a better and new Cameroon, but things seem to have fallen on deaf ears as the armed conflicts between the separatist fighters and the defence forces rages on with multiple deaths recorded on both sides and houses razed to the ground, villages burnt down and Internally Displaced Persons, IDP’s keep increasing.
The government over the years is sparing no effort in tracking down those it considers as the agents of the destruction of Cameroon with secessionist tendencies.
The government is still considering them as terrorists and numerous trumped up charges against them such as propagation of false information, rebellion, revolution, secession, insurrection and non-possession of National Identity card have been proffered against them. Even those abroad considered as activists and preaching against the marginalisation of Southern Cameroons by the Yaounde regime have equally been declared enemies of the State of Cameroon and have been tagged for persecution.
The tale of a University graduate, Achanga Cyril Aloh, is very pathetic. He has been placed under police searchlight since 2017 for his role in the crisis.
Reports hold that Achanga Cyril, disappointed with the gross marginalisation of Anglophones by the majority Francophones, in April 2017, joined many other youths in a peace demonstration in the streets of Kumba, South West Region, to express their grievances. Unfortunately for him, he was arrested by security operatives and was later released after having endorsed an undertaking that he will never take part in such demonstrations aimed at destabilising the country.
But Achanga Cyril Aloh didn’t respect the undertaking as he and others were involved in yet another anti-marginalisation demonstration. He was amongst other activists arrested in July 2017. Family sources disclosed that he was again released on bail after endorsing another undertaking never to demonstrate.
This is how Achanga finally left the country for further studies. However, in a short trip back home in December 2017 a police officer, a family friend, hinted him that he is under police searchlight due to his activism in connection to the crisis and that he should immediately go underground.
As we went to press, we learnt that Achanga Cyril had smuggled himself out of the country thanks to the assistance of a uniform officer.
It should be recalled that Achanga Cyril is equally very active on social media where his messages on the Anglophone crisis abound.
By press time the search for this alleged activist and many others had increased.
Report of a survey released by a group of Human Rights Organisations in Cameroon indicates that the lives of activists of Anglophone extraction are now in danger.
Recent statistics by civil society organisations reflect the extent of the damage with horrific numbers. The death toll is on a rise while there are claims that about 200 villages have been burnt down in the two regions, and some 430,000 people remain internally displaced with thousands of English-speaking Cameroonians having fled to neighbouring Nigeria where they are living as refugees .