BUEA, 17 June 2021 – Four officers of Cameroon’s armed and security forces have been killed in an ambush in the breakaway republic of Ambazonia.
The victims were identified Wednesday as two police and two gendarme officers.
Four other officers are missing, reportedly abducted and taken into nearby forests.
The four were shot dead in an ambush in the village of Otu near the town of Eyumojock situated 12km from the border with Nigeria’s Cross River state.
Fighters campaigning for the restoration of the independence of the erstwhile United Nations British Trusteeship Territory of Southern Cameroons and for an end to the colonial domination of the minority English-speaking Southern Cameroons by the majority French-speaking La Republique du Cameroun, have claimed responsibility for the attack.
Officials in the office of Governor Okalia Bilai Bernard, who dehumanized campaigners for independence by calling them dogs and rats confirmed the attack on Wednesday.
They also confirmed the abduction of seven senior delegates designated by the government of Cameroon’s tyrant Paul Biya and considered colonial enablers by campaigners for independence.
There have always been demands for outright independence for Southern Cameroons, beginning in 1953 when representatives of the territory – administered as a part of Nigeria for the preceding 44 years – broke away in protest over their colonial domination by Nigeria.
The year after, British colonialists raise Southern Cameroons to the status of a self-governing territory, with its own government, security forces, legal, educational, and other government services.
The territory prides itself as the birthplace of African democracy, given that it was the first place in Africa in 1958 where the ruling party lost elections it had organized and peacefully handed power over to the opposition.
A year earlier, at a conference in the town of Mamfe, situated 20km north of Otu, Southern Cameroonian political parties voted overwhelmingly in favor of outright independence, rejecting two other options proposed by the colonialists – to integrate Nigeria or to join French-speaking Cameroon in a loose confederation of “two states equal in status”.
Notwithstanding the vote, British colonialists teamed up with their French counterparts to deny the territory outright independence, forcing its people in a United Nations-supervised independence plebiscite on 11 February 1961 to choose one of the two options they had overwhelmingly rejected.
French-speaking Cameroon – known officially at independence as La Republique du Cameroun, written with a “u” – had gained independence on 1st January 1960 within international boundaries that did not include Southern Cameroons.
Pursuant to UN General Resolution 1608(XV) adopted on 21 April 1961, Southern Cameroons was supposed to gain independence on 1st October 1961 as one of the two states, equal in status of a federation known as the United Republics (with an “s”) of the Cameroons (with an “s”).
For the eleven years that followed, Southern Cameroons renamed the state of West Cameroon cohabitated with the state of La Republique du Cameroun renamed the state of East Cameroon, with each state maintaining its government structures, including parliaments, security forces, education, and legal systems.
The majority French-speaking Cameroun along with France and other French-speaking former colonies did not hide their deep desires and hidden agenda to eventually recolonize the territory when they all – with the exception of Mali – voted against independence for Southern Cameroons on the floor of the UN General Assembly in April 1961.
The vote against also directly rejected any union with Southern Cameroons, but the United Nations imposed the union on the peoples of Southern Cameroons.
Twelve years after the independence, French-speaking Cameroun completed its recolonization plot by scrapping all self-governing institutions in Southern Cameroons.
French Cameroun added salt to injury in 1984 when its tyrant, Paul Biya, reverted to the name of La Republique du Cameroun at independence.
Southern Cameroonians have argued that French Cameroun effectively seceded from any union between the two states under the loose confederation authorized by the United Nations.
Southern Cameroonians renamed Ambazonians ever since their unilateral declaration of independence on 1st October 2017 point to this annexation process and its illegality to explain why they are determined today – as in 1953 when their forebears ended 44 years of colonial domination in Nigeria – to put an end to recolonization for 60 years next October by French Cameroun.
The peaceful declaration of independence restored was followed on 30 November 2017 by a de facto declaration of war by Paul Biya on those he described as “terrorists”, “criminals” and “secessionists”.
Over 13,000 civilians and members of civilian self-defense units calling themselves Ambazonian Restoration Forces have been killed since the beginning of the war which has seen French-Cameroonian forces commit atrocity crimes, including war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide.
More than two million people have been internally displaced by the war with over a million others forced to flee into exile in Nigeria, French Cameroun, and other neighboring countries as well as into refugee camps mostly in Nigeria, but also in Ghana, Benin, and Togo.