Sisiku & co jailed for life but Sadi says “awaiting trial”

COLUMN 14 Jul 2020
Sisiku & co jailed for life but Sadi says “awaiting trial”

The names cited to have taken part in the encounter between the Yaounde government and representatives of detained leaders of the Ambazonia restoration movement, were those of persons already tried and sentenced to various terms in prison, but the Government statement called them “separatists awaiting trial”.
Sisiku Ayuk Tabe and the rest of the Nera 10 were sentenced to life in prison in April 2019. Meanwhile, earlier in 2018, Mancho and Penn Terence, also reportedly at the encounter, were jailed to 15 and 12 years respectively. Who then was the Minister referring? Or was it just poor mastery of facts of the matter? Is Minister Rene Emmanuel Sadi well advised?
Even the crux of the minister’s statement raised many eyebrows. Observers are at a loss to understand what the Government aimed to achieve by issuing that statement. The statement said claims of negotiations were “not consistent with reality”. Sadi said they were mere “contacts, initiatives and proposals” towards dialogue to bring an end to the Ambazonia armed conflict.
Yet, the question arises, if merely “contact” it was and not “negotiations”, that would be a non-event as Yaounde has the Ambazonia leaders under its custody and has permanent contact with them as its captives. It can transfer them from one location or detention facility to another as it pleases. The minister should simply have said Yaounde transferred them to another place. But if indeed Sisiku Ayuk Tabe, Barristers Eyambe Elias and Shufai and others did meet with Yaounde Government officials, it was , no doubt, some form or stage of negotiation towards resolving the three-year armed conflict, four-year socio-political impasse. Short and simple. There was no need for Sadi’s statement, which only showed the Government’s poor mastery of the status of its own political prisoners.

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