BY ANTEM VALERY
A Military raid in Kembong Village, Manyu Division of the South West Region, in search for suspected sympathizers of the Separatists’ Movement, the SCNC as well as those who are believed to have links with the separatists’ fighters, has lead to the razing of a good number of houses.
According to reports from Mamfe, chief town Of Manyu Division, though more than one family suffered the consequences, the target was that of a certain Bechem Peter Yanyi.
Sources in Mamfe say, in 2016, a member of that family whose name we got as Ebot Henry Bechem was arrested on allegations that he was part of those who hoisted the separatists’ flag in Bamenda, claiming the independence of Southern Cameroon.
Since his arrest, he has not been released and there are fears that he may have been executed.
The Advocate also got it that another member of same family Bechem Sophian Ndandip and her father had equally been arrested for same allegations, imprisoned but later escaped custody.
Alongside other villagers, this family had been accused severally for accommodating separatists’ fighters and other sympathizers of the separatist movement the SCNC.
We are told that it is on the basis of these accusations that that the houses were attacked as military engaged in a manhunt for separatists and sympathizers of same.
Houses including that of the Bechem’s were completely burnt down; leaving the inhabitants whom had fled in the forest with no option of returning home.
Since the unfortunate incidence in Kembong, information on their whereabouts is not known.
It is believed that they may have trekked to neighboring Nigeria to seek refuge as many fleeing from the troubled zones do.
It should be noted that Southern Cameroons opted to gain independence on October 1, 1961 by joining La Republique du Cameroun.
However, SCNC militants claim that Anglophones joined Francophone Cameroon because there was no third option for them to decide whether they wanted to stand alone.
They also argued that such unification was on the basis of equality, but they have been marginalised in all aspects of national development and appointments in government.
It is also worth noting that according to the 2014 Anti Terrorism Law, civilian suspects are face trial in a military court for supporting the separatist’s movement which was banned in 2016 alongside the All Anglophone Civil Society Consortium.
Those found guilty may get between 15 to 25 years jail sentence and a life sentence in some cases.