Ntemeyok Gregory Mewanu is the City Mayor of Kumba. The 75 Councillors of Kumba urban constituency convened in an extraordinary Council Session Thursday, October 22, 2020 at the City Council Auditorium in the presence of the Council Supervisory Authority, Ntou’ou Ndong Chamberlin, to vote the new City Mayor of Kumba. The election that was full of drama and comic relief finally saw Gregory Mewanu harvesting 64 votes against Ngoh Nkelle Victor with 11 null votes. The exercise equally saw the election of Barrister Ebanja Victorine and Sako Macmillian as first and second deputy mayors respectively.
Following the previous elections of March 5, 2020 that saw Ngoh Nkelle Victor, former Government Delegate succeeding himself as the pioneer city Mayor, his main challenger, Gregory Mewanu challenged the polls both at the Administrative Bench of the South West Court of Appeal in Buea and the Administrative Bench of the Supreme Court in Yaounde, that finally sent the councillors for a re-run.
It is against this backdrop that the CPDM Central Committee sent a powerful delegation led by Minister Paul Tasong alongside Fru Jonathan and Hon. Tabot Lawson, to oversee the smooth conduct of the polls at the party level. Though no investiture was ordered by the party, reports from the CPDM in-house sleepless night meetings indicate that the Tasong-led team preferred Ngoh Nkelle Victor to Gregory Mewanu for the top job. Calls for a consensus between Ngoh Nkelle and Greg Mewanu fell on deaf ears as Mewanu stood his grounds that he is confident to floor Ngoh Nkelle in the elections.
Since things fell apart and the center could no longer hold, the Tasong-led team went ahead to organise primaries. The outcome of the primaries brought smiles to the face of Greg Mewanu as he won his “best” friend 42 by 33 votes. This now ushered the councillors into the real democratic part of the elections, and going by party discipline, Greg Mewanu as of “right” had to stand alone unchallenged. But this was a bitter pill for Ngoh Nkelle and supporters to swallow.
Then came a motion put forward by Ngoh Nkelle that his main challenger can’t go in for election. He said an ex-convict can’t be City Mayor. This motion took all by surprise and a legal luminary, Barrister Andy Tabi, a Councillor, in a legal explanation, submitted that though Greg Mewanu was convicted at the Kumba Court of First Instance in The People of Cameroon (Njikam Richard) Vs. Gregory Mewanu & 5 others, the matter is on Appeal at the South West Court of Appeal in Buea, thus until the matter is concluded at the highest court, then can there be any conclusion that Gregory Mewanu is an ex-convict. This legal clarification then set the stage for elections.
Councillors were taken aback when Ngoh Nkelle nominated himself. At the end of the exercise, Gregory Mewanu had 64 votes as against zero for Ngoh Nkelle and 11 void votes.
It should be recalled that Thursday, October 22, 2020 votes in Kumba marked the end of Ngoh Nkelle’s 11-year reign at the helm of the Kumba City Council. He was appointed by a Presidential Decree in 2009 as Government Delegate to the Kumba City Council.