You are on page 1of 27


By C. Anyangwe

While saltwater colonization was drawing to an end in Africa in the 1970s, a new and dangerous situation of colonization was emerging in parts of the continent. Imperial expansion by some nascent African states was raising its ugly head here and there. Certain States presumed to annex their smaller neighbours, anchoring their action on a supposed historical right. Ethiopia annexed Eritrea, Morocco annexed the Western Sahara after its unsuccessful irredentist claim to Mauritania, and the former French Cameroun annexed the former British Southern Cameroons. Apartheid South Africa held on to South West Africa (Namibia) and evinced an intention to absorb it. Some other States laid territorial claims to vast border areas belonging to their neighbours. For example, the claim of Somalia to the Ogaden in Ethiopia, of Libya to the Aouzou Strip in Chad, and of Nigeria to the Bakassi Peninsula in ex-British Southern Cameroons. These are all destabilizing claims. They violate international law. They constitute a threat to international peace and security. They have therefore failed. However, ex-French Cameroun (a.k.a. 'la Republique du Cameroun') is yet to end its annexation of ex-British Southern Cameroons. It is yet to withdraw its colonial administration from the territory. The creeping annexation of that territory was initiated by Mr. Ahmadou Ahidjo, first President of la Republique du Cameroun, and completed by Mr. Paul Biya, second and current President of that country. The inside story is an edifying one, but has never before been told. Recounting it must necessarily begin with a word on the character of Ahidjo. Ahidjo did not only dominated the political universe in Cameroon. Every action of his in pursuance of his secret intention of annexation of the Southern Cameroons was largely dictated by the nature of his character. 1. Ahidjo's Character Ahidjo was by nature reserved, secretive, cold, uncommunicative and undemonstrative. A lot of it probably had to do with his level of education. He never went beyond ‘l’ecole primaire superieure’ and, for a short while, worked as a postman. That by itself was nothing to be ashamed of. His local political contemporaries were educationally not better endowed: Um Nyobe was a court clerk, Charles Assale a nurse, Andre Fouda a postman, and Soppo-Priso a self-made person. Until Ahidjo's death, the circumstances of his birth remained a mystery. Born out of wedlock, no one knew who his father was. Though a Muslim from the Muslim northern part of his country, his Koranic education was somewhat mediocre. He knew no Arabic and suffered embarrassment at his inability to communicate with Arab leaders in Arabic. He tried to cover up these deficiencies by taking the Muslim title 'Alhadji' and by hiding behind a stern and inscrutable appearance.


Capitalizing on his reserved, secretive, and cold nature as well as on his strangulating hold on all the levers of power in the State, Ahidjo succeeded in creating an aura of mystery around himself and in eliciting respect for his person. But the respect he was given was one born out of fear. His Ministers trembled before him like a leaf and uttered not a word in the discharge of the duties of their office without clearance from and vetting by Ahidjo. Ahidjo maintained an intricate network of spies, informers and agents provocateurs that shadowed and eavesdropped on people. In this way he succeeded in creating the impression that he was all knowing and everywhere. This reinforced his power and the deliberate air of mystery he created around himself. People quickly learnt not to express their real views to others. The normal wages of careless talk or failure to sing the sanctioned alleluia chorus in praise of ‘le pere de la nation’ was abduction followed by severe torture, or detention at Ahidjo’s pleasure in an underground dungeon, or extrajudicial execution. Ahidjo often behaved like a con man; giving a false impression of himself, and often saying the opposite of what he actually had in mind. He appeared patient and foresighted. Deep down, however, he was impatient and temperamental, insensitive and myopic. Always a schemer, he had a predilection for intrigues and manipulations. For example, through cloak and dagger politics he managed, in 1958, to get himself appointed, by the local French Governor, Premier of French Cameroun. There was a tinge of sadism in his character, for he seemed to take delight in punishing his political opponents. He sent them to death or to dungeon-like prisons, or drove them to the maquis or to the safe haven of the Southern Cameroons. He oversaw the sinister Direction Generale des Etudes et de la Documentation (DIRDOC) which became the Service de Documentation (SEDOC) and then finally Centre National de Documentation (CND). This secret police department, together with Securite Militaire (SEMIL), is infamous for the tortures it routinely carries out through its countrywide network of torture units, the Brigades Mobile Mixtes (BMM). Ahidjo established a police state of the type described by George Orwell in his book Nineteen Eighty-Four. A Francophile through and through, Ahidjo hung to the apron-string of France which subsidized his Government's budget up to around 1970. Like the French, he was 'centralisateur et jacobin'. He was a despot and behaved like a feudal lord, but still managed to cut the image of an enlightened dictator. Some described him as the Emir of the Republic. His style of leadership was conservative and reflective of the Fulani Nord-Cameroun. Ahidjo loved and enjoyed total and untrammeled power even as he loved and enjoyed alcohol, cigarette and kolanut. He seemed haunted by a morbid fear of loosing power. He did not countenance any challenge to his authority and rule. He dreaded free and fair elections and so developed an aversion for the ballot box. In 1956 he was electorally beaten in his Nord-Cameroun constituency by Jules Ninine, a native of French Guadeloupe. Ahidjo claimed his defeat was due to election rigging. Since then he developed a phobia for elections. For example, in 1958 he became Premier of French Cameroun by mere appointment. There was no vote in or out of the territory's legislative council. In 1960 Ahidjo elevated himself to the office of Republican President, refusing to submit himself to an electoral contest. In October 1961 he proclaimed himself President of the Cameroon Federal Republic. Again he refused to submit himself to the verdict of the ballot box. The Presidential and Vice Presidential elections of 20 March 1965 does not alter this assessment since Ahidjo took the precaution of inviting Foncha to run on the

same ticket with him (aware, no doubt, that the Bamilekes were pressurizing Foncha to challenge him by running for the office of Republican President) and ensured that there was no ‘rival ticket’. In 1966 Ahidjo declared a one party state and instituted one party rule. He quickly followed this up by setting up in the Ministry of Territorial Administration the necessary techniques of election rigging and the mechanism for fixing election results in his favour. It was only after this critical preliminary precaution had been taken that Ahidjo had the temerity of starting to call 'elections'. These were of course costly rituals, for in each presidential election Ahidjo was forever the sole candidate and always won by 99.99%. In fact Ahidjo won even before 'election' day. In parliamentary 'elections' Ahidjo declared the entire country one single parliamentary constituency. He nominated all the candidates for the single list and such nomination amounted to an automatic 99.99% 'win' for the candidates, long before polling day. This then, presented in the broadest outline, is the man who, while in power between 1961 and 1982, masterminded the annexation of the former British Southern Cameroons by his native Republique du Cameroun. 2. Ahidjo's Secessionist Logic Ahidjo was born in Garoua in Muslim Fulani-dominated Nord-Cameroun. The French viewed French Cameroun as an amalgam of two disparate parts, the largely Christianized Bantu southern part (known as Sud-Cameroun) and the largely Islamized Fulani northern part (Nord-Cameroun). The French correctly assessed Nord-Cameroun to be closer to Chad or Nigeria than to Sud-Cameroun. In fact, at one point the idea of ceding NordCameroun to Britain, as part of the contiguous British territory of Nigeria, did cross the mind of the French. After all, before European colonization, the Muslim empire of the great Nigeria warrior, Usman Dan Fodio, was extended by his son , Adama, to the entire Nord-Cameroun. Remembering their humiliation by the British, at Fashoda in 1890, the French quickly gave up any thought of being so generous towards the British. Instead, the French felt disposed to incorporating Nord-Cameroun into their Chadian territory. And in the 1940s they seriously considered doing so. At the Brazzaville Conference in 1944 the Governor of French Cameroun urged the reconfiguration of French Equatorial Africa, so as to yield two large territories based on ethnic affinity. According to the proposal Nord-Cameroun would be fused with Chad to form one territory, with headquarters in Fort Lamy (N’djamena); Sud-Cameroun would be fused with the French Congo, Gabon, and Oubangui-Chari, with headquarters in Brazzaville. The proposal made a lot of sense. But it was not pursued. Still, in 1946 the French abandoned the policy of educating children from both parts of French Cameroun in the same schools. Those from Nord-Cameroun were from then onwards sent to school in Bangor, Chad. The proposal to incorporate Nord-Cameroun into Chad was again revived and seriously considered in 1955, especially given the UPC terrorism and 'communist threat' in Sud-Cameroun. After he entered politics in 1946, and especially after his electoral thrashing by Ninine in 1956, Ahidjo himself toyed with the idea of the secession of Nord-Cameroun followed by its incorporation into Chad. At the Assemblee de l'Union Francaise in Paris where he was a representative from French Cameroun from

1953-1957, Ahidjo, together with Arouna Njoya ( a Muslim from Foumban, an Islamic enclave in Sud-Cameroun), flirted with Chadian representatives. In 1957/58 Ahidjo again raised the spectre of Nord-Cameroun seceding (presumably to join Chad). The threat was only called off after the main political leaders of Sud-Cameroun agreed not to challenge Ahidjo's somewhat disputable appointment as Premier of French Cameroun. Ahidjo was actually a sectarian politician with secessionist proclivities. Until his death in forced exile, his Nord-Cameroun constituency entered the calculus of all his political decision and actions. 3. Ahidjo Initially Wanted the Northern, Not the Southern, British Cameroons Neither Ahidjo nor the French were initially interested in the idea of a possible union of British Cameroons with French Cameroun. The idea of ‘reunification’ was first mooted in 1948 by resident Bamilekes in Tiko and Kumba as a way of facilitating cross border trading. They probably had in mind something like a customs union between British and French Cameroon. In the early 1950s, however, the ‘reunification’ idea, hazy as it was, was opportunistically adopted by the Union des Populations du Cameroun (UPC) as a political platform for the purpose of gaining UN attention for the embattled French Cameroun and the UPC fight for that territory’s independence. Ahidjo was lukewarm to the idea of ‘reunification’. He was very apprehensive that in any such ‘reunion’, liberal British Cameroons would join forces with his political foes in Sud-Cameroun and bring about his political downfall. His anxiety arose from his perception of the Southern Cameroons as all too similar ‘ethnically’ and politically to the rebellious Sud-Cameroun. The French, on their part, were afraid that the British-derived liberal and democratic culture of British Cameroons would supplant the French-derived illiberal and autocratic culture of French Cameroon. Indeed, the strong institutions of the Southern Cameroons inspired respect as well as disquiet. Ahidjo's interest in a possible union of the two Cameroons would come only years later. It was an interest prompted by self-serving considerations. The idea of a union of the two Cameroons was gaining grounds among some elite and Ahidjo felt he could cut the ground under the feet of the UPC by subscribing to the unification rhetoric. Ahidjo's real interest, however, lay in the British Northern Cameroons, geographically, religiously, ethnically and culturally closer to his Nord-Cameroun. He reasoned that if he could somehow succeed in annexing this part of the British Cameroons his political fortunes would be greatly enhanced. The additional ethnic population would widen his political base and increase the population of NordCameroun. Ahidjo had ambivalent feelings. He wanted the Northern, not the Southern, part of the British Cameroons. He reasoned that the latter part of the British territory was tribally (so it was claimed) and geographically too close to Sud-Cameroun for comfort and would add to its population, making his native Nord-Cameroun an even smaller minority. He therefore nursed the idea of a partition of the British Cameroons, the Northern part being annexed by French Cameroun and the Southern part by Nigeria. If this could not be done he would rather have nothing at all to do with the whole of the British Cameroons. Unfortunately for him, he failed to get France to urge the United Kingdom to agree on a partition. Much of the difficulty in achieving this goal had to do with the status of the

Territory as one under international tutelage and therefore incapable of cession by the Administering Authority. Additionally, in Nigeria, the Northerners called the political shots in that country and were themselves interested not in the Christian British Southern Cameroons (perceived as politically more in sympathy with southern Nigeria politicians) but in the Muslim British Northern Cameroons. 4. The Plebiscite and its Immediate Aftermath It follows from what has been said that in 1959 when Ahidjo denied in the United Nations that he had any desire to annex the British Cameroons he was lying in his teeth. Characteristically, he was avowing one thing when in fact he had in mind the direct opposite of what he was saying. Mr. Foncha, the Premier of the Southern Cameroons, and the United Nations made the terrible mistake of believing him. But at least in 1959 Ahidjo's expansionist ambition was limited to annexing Northern Cameroons. He camouflaged his ulterior motive and made a show of being in favour of a union of equals between the two Cameroons. In late 1959 the United Nations brought unbearable pressure to bear on Foncha and Endeley to accept the holding of a plebiscite not later than March 1, 1961, and on the basis of the question whether the people of the British Cameroons wished "to achieve independence by joining" Nigeria or la Republique du Cameroun. On 1 January 1960, the latter territory achieved independence, without a plebiscite, by devolution agreements with France; and on 1 October the same year, Nigeria also achieved independence from Britain. In both countries Government was led and dominated by the Muslim Haussa-Fulani political elite. In each country that political leadership was, for reasons of ethnicity, more interested in the Northern, than in the Southern, Cameroons. So both countries went along with the recommendation of the 1958 UN Visiting Mission to the Trust Territories in West Africa, that there be a separate plebiscite vote in the two parts of the British Cameroons. In doing so each side calculated that it would acquire the Northern Cameroons. After months of long negotiations between Foncha and Ahidjo, both freely agreed that the union of the two countries would take the form of a federation. One major consideration influenced Ahidjo's acceptance of federalism even though he was 'centralisateur par atavisme' and legally did not have to accept a federation at all since, if the plebiscite vote went his way, the Southern Cameroons would, arguably, have to join la Republique. He needed to counter Nigeria's attractive offer of federalism. The British Cameroons was already accustomed to federalism, thanks to the fact that it was administered for close to 50 years as part of Nigeria. If Ahidjo offered to them the totalitarian unitary system he had instituted in la Republique du Cameroun, the electorate in both Northern and Southern Cameroons would reject it and vote in favour of joining Nigeria. So, in order not to lose the Northern Cameroons on which he had his predatory ambitions, he too offered federalism as the basis of union, though, typically, he was extremely miserly on specifics. He even winked to the Northern Cameroons by intimating that it would be welcomed in the projected federal union as a separate state. So, after Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa came campaigning in Buea for 'federalist integration', Ahidjo also came campaigning for 'federalist unification'.


In the first plebiscite in Northern Cameroons in 1959 the people had voted for separation from Nigeria and for deferment of a decision on their future to a later date.. Ahidjo had smelt victory in his annexation agenda and had jumped for joy. But his joy soon proved to be short-lived. On 11-12 February 1961 Northern Cameroons voted in a second plebiscite to 'join' Nigeria 'as an integral part of the Northern Province' of that country. On the other hand the Southern Cameroons voted 'to achieve independence by joining' la Republique du Cameroun on the basis of an earlier agreed-to federal union of two states, equal in status. Ahidjo was shocked and beside himself. The exact opposite of what he had hoped for had happened. This explains why in the Government of la Republique du Cameroun there was more reaction to the negative vote of the Northern Cameroons than to the positive vote of the Southern Cameroons. Ahidjo had hoped for an increased northern population to bolster his support, and was extremely disappointed by what he considered as a ‘loss’ of the Northern Cameroons. What was to be done? He decided that if there had to be a union between the Southern Cameroons and la Republique du Cameroun then the Northern Cameroons must come on board. Or else…. He tried to get France to lobby the United Nations to go back on its earlier decision on a separate, rather than a unitary, vote for the Trust Territory. Ahidjo reckoned, from the published plebiscite results, that if the counting were taken for the territory as one unit, the vote would go his way. He would have 'his' Northern British Cameroons and grudgingly keep the Southern Cameroons. And should the latter try to cause 'trouble' it would be administered the same medicine given to the 'rebellious' Bamilekes and Bassas in la Republique du Cameroun. France was of course ill qualified to fulfill this mandate and said so. In the plebiscite in the two Trust Territories of British Togoland and French Togoland, France had opposed a unitary vote for those Territories and had urged a separate one instead. That separate vote resulted in the people of the British Togoland voting to join the Gold Coast (the unified entity later achieving independence as Ghana) and the French Togoland achieving separate independence. Ahidjo had pinned his hopes on France doing something at the UN. That the French could do nothing was bad news for him. And he was bitter. From that moment he became cagey, evasive and extremely difficult in his dealings with Foncha. He made a song and dance about la Republique du Cameroun's international personality. He advanced the untenable idea that la Republique du Cameroun is a so-called mother country purportedly receiving back its claimed lost territory, the Southern Cameroons. In his delusions of grandeur he probably saw himself as a latter day Bismarck or Cavour. Ahidjo refused to accept the plebiscite result for the Northern Cameroons, albeit its endorsement by the UN, alleging that an injustice had been committed. The claimed injustice seemed clearly enough to have been the rejection , by the people of that Territory, of union with la Republique du Cameroun. He took the matter to the International Court of Justice. There, la Republique du Cameroun conceded it was not claiming the return of people or territory it had lost. It also conceded that the endorsement of the plebiscite results by the United Nations General Assembly as well as the termination of the Trusteeship Agreement for the Cameroons under United Kingdom Administration was valid, conclusive and final. But it said it had come to the Court simply to invite it 'to declare the law'. No, said the Judges, we cannot do that; the judicial function does not extend to rendering a declaratory judgment of the nature of an academic pronouncement or a moot decision. The case was accordingly dismissed as being without object. And so ended Ahidjo's day in the ICJ. Back at home however, he kept whining like a child. He

even foolishly declared a so-called day of national mourning. He did not say when it was that la Republique du Cameroun acquired the territory and people it now claims to have lost. Nigeria and the UN were not amused by such ill-considered antics. The stupidity was quickly stopped. Ahidjo's failed bid to annex Northern Cameroons had a negative effect on the Southern Cameroons / Republique du Cameroun union. When his ICJ adventure failed Ahidjo's bitterness knew no bounds, for he took the loss of that case as an international humiliation. He now regretted his federal agreement with Foncha. Realizing that the emergence of the Cameroon Federal Republic meant the concomitant extinction of la Republique du Cameroun as a subject of international law, he contrived to promote the fiction that nothing had changed. He then scuttled the Foumban constitutional talks. He got a French law professor to draft a mongrel federal constitution for him. Then he got the document rubber-stamped by a castrated Republique du Cameroun Assembly. And he promulgated it on 1 September 1961 as the Federal Constitution. And yet Ahidjo was a foreign prince and his Assembly a foreign parliament. How these could purport to legislate, extraterritorially, for the Southern Cameroons that was up to 1 October 1961, still a UN trust territory under British jurisdiction, still remains a legal mystery. Ahidjo sought to justify this first act of imperialism. He claimed, without any legal basis, that la Republique du Cameroun is the so-called mother country merely receiving back a returning part of its territory and that the document in question was in fact not a new constitution but simply an amended version of the country's 1960 constitution. How the Assembly of la Republique du Cameroun could possibly have bought this egregious lie can only be explained by the fact that it has always been a clapping chamber and a mere extension of the executive, that executive being Ahidjo himself. This episode is eminently significant in that Ahidjo was here laying the groundwork, based on fraud of course, for the eventual destruction of the substratum of the Union of the two Cameroons. He was also laying the ground work for the eventual revival and concomitant territorial expansion of la Republique du Cameroun. He knew that Republique du Cameroun's colonially defined borders froze at the moment of its attainment of independence on 1 January 1960 and that any territorial claim beyond those borders is impermissible under international law. So he started propagating a fallacious and dangerous doctrine. According to him la Republique du Cameroun is the State successor to the German protectorate of Kamerun, extinct, de facto, since 1915 and, de jure, since 1919. The union formed on 1 October 1961, he said, was actually 'reunification' and a first step towards a return to the borders of German Kamerun (he was of course unable to say what these borders were). The 'Federal Republic of Cameroon' and the 'United Republic of Cameroon' were simply internal intermediate changes of names, of no import, meant to accommodate the Southern Cameroons and allow its people time to adjust to, and be absorbed by, the people of la Republique du Cameroun. The legal situation, however, was that the Cameroon Federal Republic was an objective reality (however centralised it may have been) and enjoyed international personality. La Republique du Cameroun had become extinct. But, in order to keep up the lie that the Cameroon Federal Republic was a mere continuation of la Republique du Cameroun, Ahidjo contrived to make the Federal Republic a mere decorative federation. His rhetoric was in effect a claim to 'Greater Republique du Cameroun'. Unification to him meant the

'rectification' of the borders of la Republique du Cameroun. The Federation was merely la Republique du Cameroun in new accoutrements, and the Federated State of West Cameroon (hitherto known as the Southern Cameroons) merely a new region added to Republique du Cameroun's existing five administrative regions. Ahidjo then set about making good these outlandish claims. First, barely a month or so after unification he imposed a state of emergency in the Federated State of West Cameroon and militarily occupied it. The pretext was the need to fight Bamileke and Bassa 'terrorists' who, it was said, had sought refuge in the safe haven of West Cameroon. Forty years afterwards that state of emergency still exists and the territory still remains militarily occupied. Secondly, Ahidjo decreed that West Cameroon was at the same time also an administrative region. Taxonomically therefore, West Cameroon was merely one of the six regions of the Federation. He then appointed a Francophone as 'Federal Inspector of Administration' to head the region and to be answerable directly to him. This additional authority placed at the head of West Cameroon was a deliberate ploy to create conflict over jurisdiction and therefore confusion, and to weaken the authority of the West Cameroon Prime Minister. The Francophone Federal Inspector represented Ahidjo and was directly responsible to him. He considered himself the equal of the West Cameroon Prime Minister, challenged every action of his and presumed to take precedence over him in all official ceremonies. Ahidjo thus created an administrative system which basically ignored the federal nature of the country. The idea was to weaken the West Cameroon State and to create the impression that the territory was indeed part of the territory of la Republique du Cameroun. Thirdly, Ahidjo gnawed into such powers as the Federated State had and completely deprived it of revenue raising powers. Fourthly, he made sure there was a very low level of institutional differentiation between the Federal Government he headed and the government of the Federated State of East Cameroun (hitherto known as la Republique du Cameroun). Indeed, the de facto relationship of the states in the Federation was the West Cameroon State, on the one hand, and the Federal Government together with the East Cameroun State, on the other hand. Fifthly, he soon arrogated to himself the power to appoint and dismiss the Prime Ministers and Ministers of the Governments of the Federated States, without consulting the Federated State legislatures, even though the Federated States operated a parliamentary system of government. In justification he said Cameroon was a Federation, not a Confederation. To argue, as he did, that in a federal system the Prime Ministers and Ministers of the component states are appointed by the Union President was, to say the least, forced logic and strange learning. At any rate, the claim is borne out neither by principle nor state practice. Sixthly, he assumed absolute powers and instituted a vicious one party dispensation to consolidate his choking grip on power. 5. Republique du Cameroun’s Nigeria phobia While Ahidjo emasculated the Federated State of West Cameroon and held the people of that territory under a vicious and unremitting despotism, he kept a watchful eye on 'big brother' across the western border. Nigeria phobia has always been a constant in the thinking of la Republique du Cameroun. In part this is due to that country's spatial and demographic superiority, its better infrastructure, its comparatively higher level of social and economic development, and, not the least, its large and battle tested military. Then of


course that country’s educational system and facilities are by far better and have also attracted hundreds of students, at tertiary level, from la Republique du Cameroun. Republique du Cameroun has, moreover, been worried about what it perceives as the potential imperialism of Nigeria. It has always taken the view that Nigeria, aided and abetted by the British, fraudulently 'grabbed' the British Northern Cameroons and that it has since cast its 'covetous' eyes on the Southern Cameroons. Set a thief to catch a thief. Republique du Cameroun doubtlessly had an annexationist agenda and it has always believed Nigeria has the same. Very early in the day the French had warned Ahidjo of what they considered the enduring attractiveness of Nigeria for the Southern Cameroons, in part because both territories had been administered together by the British for nearly fifty years. The French advised Ahidjo not to develop road and telecommunications networks within West Cameroon and linking with Nigeria. To do so, the French argued, would strengthen West Cameroon's autonomy, turn the territory westward in the direction of Nigeria rather than eastward in the direction of Republique du Cameroun, and enable it to escape assimilation. Moreover, said the French, West Cameroon would be flooded with 'made in Nigeria' products with disastrous consequences for Republique du Cameroun's French-controlled and struggling infant economy. These pieces of advice did not fall on deaf ears. The Yaounde oligarchy proceeded to destroy the functional road and telecommunication network that existed in the Southern Cameroons as at the time of unification. The idea was to increase the territory’s physical isolation and heighten its sense of psychological distantiation. Yaounde also proceeded to impose inordinately high customs duties on goods coming from Nigeria. It proceeded to erect customs barriers not only along the Southern Cameroons / Nigerian border but also along the Southern Cameroons / Republique du Cameroun border. Republique du Cameroun, supported by French troops, regularly resorts to military force to prevent Nigerian goods entering the Southern Cameroons. This has lead to frequent clashes with Nigerian troops. And this is one of the immediate causes of the Bakassi Dispute. Not infrequently the marauding soldiers of la Republique du Cameroun raid the business premises of Southern Cameroonian businessmen, seize and destroy 'made in Nigeria' products. The view in both Yaounde and Paris was that to improve the infrastructure in the Southern Cameroons and allow it taxing powers will only go to foster the territory's sense of oneness, increase its self-sufficiency and strengthen its autonomy. This was considered politically ill advised. Ahidjo therefore developed divide and rule tactics, created and sustained petty jealousies between the territory's communities, and set them on each other's throat. He proceeded to fragment the territory, to impair its political unity and territorial integrity, and to destroy its legal personality. Successive attempts have since been made (unsuccessfully) to amputate the territory and fuse parts thereof with contiguous areas in Republique du Cameroun in order to create so-called 'bilingual provinces'. Population transfers have also been contemplated. The idea is to dilute the territory's English-speaking population and obliterate the internationally well known boundary between the Southern Cameroons and Republique du Cameroun. Moreover, la Republique du Cameroun has intensified its obsessive efforts in promoting internal fission and tribal factionalism in the Southern Cameroons.


6. Jua’s Tenure of Office as Prime Minister of West Cameroon The very popular Augustine Ngom Jua was Prime Minister of the Federated State of West Cameroon from 1965 to 1968. A mere three years. But they were eventful ones. Jua was a grass roots politician who retained a keen sense of movements in West Cameroon popular feeling. Immediately prior to his appointment as Prime Minister on 12 May 1965, Jua was the able Minister of Finance in the West Cameroon Government through the difficult economic period. He did good service as Minister of Finance and was the moving force behind heroic efforts to improve the economic situation in West Cameroon: the creation of the West Cameroon Government-supported Cameroon Bank Ltd (Cambank) and Cameroon Air Transport (CAT), the Swiss-assisted United Cameroon Trading Company (UCTC), the Israeli-assisted West Cameroon State Lottery, the West Cameroon Development Agency-financed Cameroon Commercial Corporation (CCC) and Tiko Iron Works (TIW), and the Indian-financed Britind Ltd (BL). An exponent of ‘states-rights’, he actively championed the autonomy of West Cameroon and strongly asserted its specificity and individuality. He was believed to be a West Cameroonian first and foremeost. One of his first commendable acts on taking office was his rapprochement with the opposition. He formed a KNDP-CPNC national government of unity. This coalition unity Government saw the return of Dr Endeley to ministerial rank as Leader of Government business in the House of Assembly. Mr Mbile, his most loyal supporter, became Minister of Works. At once there was a thaw in the congealed political atmosphere in Buea. Jua’s rapprochement was the final healing of the old rift in the preindependence movement in West Cameroon and was very well received by the people of the Federated State. But Ahidjo was alarmed that those who had campaigned for joining Nigeria should be back in Government in West Cameroon. He read into Jua’s unity Government an insipient attitudinal shift, a leaning towards Nigeria. Ahidjo was baffled. Furthermore, praying in aid legal arguments, the Government of West Cameroon took exceptions to ‘federal meddling’ and consistently challenged Ahidjo’s absolutism and ‘francisation imposee’ . Ahidjo had not anticipated challenge in this way. Then came the Bernard Fonlon factor. Dr. (as he then was) Fonlon was the leading West Cameroonian intellectual. He was educated at Onitsha and Enugu (Nigeria), studied at the Sorbonne (France), took a Diploma in Education at Oxford (England) and a PhD from the National University of Ireland. Between mid-1964 and April 1965 the Cameroon Times serialized a number of seminal articles written by the esteemed intellectual: “Shall we Make or Mar?” “A Case for Early Bilingualism”, and “Under the Sign of the Rising Sun”. These articles reintroduced discourse on the aims of ‘reunification’, decried the political deficiencies of the day, and developed a plea for a bilingual State. He saw bilingualism as a means of preventing West Cameroonian English-derived values and cultures from being overwhelmed by the other side. He argued for an equal quota of cabinet ministers in the Federal Government. He saw this as a concrete application of the principle of legal egalitarianism between the two component States of the Federation. Ahidjo and his everpresent French advisers were taken aback. Dr Fonlon’s writings (in the Cameroon Times, and then in Abbia) stirred West Cameroon nationalism. He was perceptive enough to warn that West Cameroon might not endure for too long the creeping annexation of its territory. “Discontent and frustration are

increasing,” he sounded the alarm gong. “This desperation is likely to become explosive.” Echoing the learned doctor, the ever vocal West Cameroon press (Cameroon Times, Cameroon Outlook, Cameroon Post, Cameroon Star, Cameroon Mirror, the Iroko) denounced the heavy domination and master-attitude of Francophones and the behaviour of the ubiquitous gendarmes (a Francophone paramilitary force) as a veritable army of occupation. In the Buea Mountain Club, a recreational facility for the elite but doubling as a kind of Hyde Park Corner, the idea of an Ambazonian Republic was ‘playfully’ mooted and discussed . To Ahidjo, Jua’s Government had become something of a monster, harassing his central Government and exerting a centrifugal force in the Federation. Ahidjo was particularly piqued by what became known as the Ndifor Case, 1966. That case clearly demonstrated that if challenged, even militarily, West Cameroon was capable of giving an appropriate response. Police Inspector Ndifor, acting as procurement officer, had ordered arms through the CDC on behalf of the West Cameroon Government for use by the West Cameroon Police. Ahidjo probably thought there was a secessionist bid in the making. A month or so after unification, he had established a military tribunal in Buea and Captain Robert Mbu, a West Cameroonian, was its military prosecutor. Acting on orders from the Minister of Armed Forces (Mr. Sadou Daoudou), himself acting on instructions from Ahidjo, Captain Mbu had Inspector Ndifor arrested. He was arraigned before the military tribunal for ‘possession of arms’. The tribunal, presided over by an English expatriate judicial officer, Magistrate Wyatt, found Inspector Ndifor not guilty and accordingly acquitted him. Ahidjo saw a conspiracy in this and thought the acquittal was unmerited. He ordered his soldiers, camped in Buea, to capture Ndifor. Special Branch (the West Cameroon intelligence service) reported to Jua that Ahidjo had given orders for the abduction of Ndifor, inspite of his acquittal by Ahidjo’s own military tribunal. The rule of law was being flouted and the liberty of a West Cameroonian citizen was at stake. Jua at once called a crisis Cabinet meeting which discussed the matter and then summoned the West Cameroon Commissioner of Police, Mr. Michael Ntune. The Prime Minister told him, “It is the decision of my Government that you resist to the last man the planned abduction of Inspector Ndifor.” Back at Police Headquarters, Mr. Ntune called in SSP Paxson Agbor and Shiyntum, briefed them and entrusted the mission in their hands. Agbor and Shiyntum were the ablest and most daring officers of police ever and even in his life time Paxson Agbor was already a legend for feats of skill, strength and courage. In the Ndifor Case, he and Shiyntum lived up to their reputation. They got a detachment of the famed West Cameroon Mobile Wing Police (trained by Colonel Valentine of the British Army) battle ready, devised a stratagem and tactically deployed it in wait for the ‘enemy’. Buea was tense but ready for a show down with Yaounde. How Paxson Agbor and his men surrendered and humiliated Ahidjo’s soldiers near the Clerks’ Quarters without firing a single shot is in itself a most edifying story of wit and bravery . It was a clear indication of the extent to which West Cameroon was prepared to go to defend itself and its interest given the right leadership. This incident further endeared Jua to the people of West Cameroon and he was known simply as ‘Bobe’. But it also sealed his fate as Prime Minister and was a contributory factor to the somewhat suspect circumstances of his death a few years later. Moreover, that was not the end of the Ndifor saga. Ahidjo soon dispatched a strong delegation of his Ministers to Buea to see the Prime Minister. The delegation was made up of Mr. Happi,

Delegue General a la Surete Nationale; Mr. Sabbal Lecco, Ministre de la Justice, Garde des Sceaux; Mr. Enoch Kwayeb, Ministre de l’Administration Territoriale; and Mr. Sadou Daoudou, Ministre des Forces Armees. The delegation held a meeting with the Prime Minister, forced the case back to the military tribunal, and pressurised it into convicting Ndifor and sentencing him to four years imprisonment. Magistrate Wyatt could not stomach this travesty of justice and resigned his appointment. Jua was scandalised. He had thought the tribunal would still acquit Ndifor since the facts of the case were the same and there was no new evidence. But he had not reckoned with Ahidjo’s practice of always interferring with the courts when and how he pleased. He had not reckoned with the fact that in any confrontation with his adversaries, Ahidjo would go to all lengths to have the last word. In any case, Ahidjo never forgave Jua for what he must have considered the latter’s affront to him. He accused Jua of keeping a private army and called on him to disband it. As far as Ahidjo was concerned, the West Cameroon Mobile Wing Police was simply a West Cameroon army in disguise. If the Mobile Wing Police is a private army, replied Jua sedately, so too are the gendarmerie and ‘la garde republicaine’ (Ahidjo’s praetorian guard) and Ahidjo should show the example by banning them. Ahidjo was not amused and he quickly ‘federalised’ the West Cameroon Police, that is to say, he integrated it into the Francophone police force known as ‘la surete nationale’. In October 1966, there occurred another incident, illustrative of Jua’s determination to defend the territorial integrity of West Cameroon. On 1 October 1966, the Cameroon Mirror published a story captioned ‘Federal Regions May be Recarved’. The paper stated that Ahidjo planned to recarve adminsitrative regions in such a way that East Cameroun regions would cross the border and incorporate West Cameroon: Wouri would incorporate Victoria Division and Moungo would merge with Kumba Division, as part of the Littoral Region; Dschang would swallow up Mamfe Division, and Bafoussam would integrate Bamenda and Wum Divisions, as part of l’Ouest Region; and Banyo would incorporate Nkambe as part of Adamaoua Region. Jua’s reaction to this alarming news was swift and robust: “It must be emphasised that the Federal Republic of Cameroon is a federation of two states with different backgrounds, cultures and traditions; the present arrangement was in fact envisaged as the most ideal solution to reunification ... Any exercise, therefore, that is designed to alter this arrangement ... will clearly alter the basis on which the entire Federation rests and will throw our present system of government into complete disarray ... It is equally clear that since ours is a democratic republic a matter of far-reaching significance and consequences cannot be conceived and executed in secret without the full knowledge and concurrence of the people of West Cameroon through their accredited representatives, to wit, the West Cameroon Government.” Ahidjo’s rejoinder was not long in coming. He denied talk of absorption or integration and said there was a single Cameroon, its citizens having the same rights and duties. Then he added, significantly, “[A]fter the people of West Cameroon massively voted in favour of reunifcation and not for federation, after reunification itself, we freely estimated that it was necessary to create

a federation between the two states, and to create federal institutions. But that does not permit us to say that there are two Cameroonian nations.” Whatever the case, Jua had made his point. There could be no question of a unilateral alteration of the well-known boundary between the two component States of the Federation without the concurrence of the people of West Cameroon acting through their democratically elected Government. It was implied in Jua’s reaction that such concurrence would not be forthcoming as that would alter the very basis of the Federation. As a reaction to Jua’s stand however, Ahidjo moved in 1969 to further strengthen ‘l’administration territoriale’, giving his prefects and governors absolute and unchecked powers within their administative areas, including the power to order the torture of individuals and to order the indefinite detention of persons without due process of law. Jua’s headaches with Ahidjo were not over yet. In December 1966, there took place one of the most bloody genocidal acts ever committed by Francophones against Anglophones. History records it as the Tombel Massacre. Fleeing relentless repression in their native French-speaking Cameroun, thousands of Bamileke refugees and/or terrorists (the doubt as to which they were was difficult to resolve) had sought asylum in the Southern Cameroons and were given sanctuary as migrants. They settled principally in Bamenda, Kumba and Tombel. In Tombel they acquired pieces of land (some say dubiously), laid claim to others and took control of petty trading in the area. The land issue was particularly critical because the Bamilekes who had pushed southwards into the Littoral province from their native Western province were perceived as now bent on expanding westwards from the Manengouba/Loum area across the border into Bakossi lands. The Bakossi resented this perceived invasion and tension began to mount between the two communities. Shortly before Christmas 1966, Bamileke ‘terrorists’ operating from their bases across the border in East Cameroun slipped into Tombel and cowardly shot dead four defenceless Bakossis. The Bakossis retaliated by venting their anger on resident Bamilekes . There were some casualties and some property was also damaged. Yaounde ordered in troops from Loum across the border. ‘Tombel must be destroyed’. That seems to have been their order. A most barbaric act of collective revenge was carried out against the Bakossis. Tombel was destroyed. Two hundred and thirty six (236) Bakossis were massacred. Another one hundred and forty three (143) were arrested and transported, under inhuman conditions, to Yaounde and tried by a military tribunal for ‘subversion and the dissemination of false news’. Seventeen (17) were sentenced to death and executed by firing squad, 75 to life jail in various detention camps in East Cameroun (in effect to slow death given the cruel conditions under which prisoners were held in those camps), 10 to ten, and 4 to two, years in jail. One man died during the trial and 36 persons were discharged. This episode was particularly revolting because only six years earlier, in 1961, soldiers from la Republique du Cameroun, claiming to be pursuing Bamileke ‘terrorists’ had illegally crossed the Southern Cameroons border and massacred 6 defenceless CDC workers (by mistake, it was said) at Ebubu Village near Tombel. Little was it known at that time that the massacre was a foretaste of la Republique du Cameroun’s pattern of behaviour. Little was it then known also that an attempt would be made to assassinate Foncha in Bamileke territory and that Zacharia Abendong, MP in the West Cameroon House of Assembly, would be killed in that attempt.


In 1968, the ever vindictive Ahidjo took his sweet revenge on Jua. Ahidjo replaced him with Muna as Prime Minister of West Cameroon. The people of West Cameroon were devasted. Whereas Ngom Jua and Nzo Ekhah-Nghaky were hailed as exponents of West Cameroon autonomy, S.T. Muna and E.T. Egbe were considered sell outs to Francophones and as Ahidjo’s hatchet men. Indeed, Muna’s administration in West Cameroun was characterized by his espousal of ‘centralist federalism’, indistinguishable from Ahidjo’s ‘unitary federalism’. Jua took his humiliation with equanimity. He was not through yet with his criticism of Ahidjo’s iron-fisted rule. He would openly cross swords with him again in 1975. At the CNU jamboree which was then holding in Douala, Ahidjo pretended, Caesar-like, that he would not put himself up again as the CNU candidate to run for the office of Republican President in the upcoming presidential elections. His party cadres, both high and low, pleaded and pleaded with him to revisit his decision. When they kept on insisting, Jua wondered aloud what all the fuss was about. He indicated that he, Ngom Jua, was ready, willing and able to assume the high office of Republican President. As far as Ahidjo was concerned this was blatant effrontery, if not subversion. From that moment, Jua became, to all intents and purposes, ‘dead man walking’. Another sad note on the Jua years as Prime Minister was the untimely passing away, in August 1966, of the Speaker of the West Cameroon House of Assembly, the Honourable Mr. P.M. Kale, the well respected West Cameroon elder statesman. He was given a befitting state funeral with full police honours. As the West Cameroon Police led the funeral march to Buea Town, there was a sinister foreboding in West Cameroon about the future of the State. 7. The Spill Over Effect of the Nigerian Civil War The Nigerian civil war (1968-1970) broke out the same year Jua left office as Prime Minister of West Cameroon. The war elicited in Ahidjo a mixed feeling of glee and apprehension. He was gleeful because he believed the people of the Southern Cameroons would now be grateful for having chosen to ‘join’ la Republique du Cameroun and would definitely turn eastwards and discard any nostalgie nigerianne, any lingering fond memories of Nigeria, they may still have. Ahidjo also believed that given the military action by Lagos against Enugu, the Government of the Southern Cameroons will not push its autonomist claims to the extent of seeking to opt out of the Federation for fear that Yaounde would likewise use force against Buea. Yet Ahidjo was apprehensive. The military coup and counter coup in Nigeria were too close for comfort. The first coup had been inspired and led by soldiers from the south and northern leaders had been eliminated. Might not the same thing happen here as well? In an effort to extirpate secessionist sentiment in West Cameroon, and in order to insure himself against the possibility of a southern-engineered coup against his regime, Ahidjo decided to throw his lot with Gowon, even though France openly supported Ojukwu and actively urged Francophone States to do the same. In fact, throughout Ahidjo’s Presidency the air was filled with rumours of a southern-engineered coup. Southern Cameroonian officers serving in the Nigeria Army (Tataw, Anagho, Malonge, Nkweti, Chiabi, etc.) who returned from Nigeria


after unification were under suspicion and closely watched. Ahidjo was therefore surprised to learn that pro-Biafran feeling was strong in West Cameroon and that the war had not made West Cameroonians contented with their choice of ‘joining’ la Republique du Cameroun. He had swallowed hook, bait and sink the propaganda that the anti-Ibo plebiscite vote necessarily meant a hatred for Ibos or other Nigerians. The Biafra sympathy proceeded from an understanding, through lived experience, of the issue of persecution.. And so in spite of Ahidjo’s belief that the Nigerian civil war would serve as a deterrent to any secessionist ideas by West Cameroon, there was in fact open talk about secession. It dawned on Ahidjo that not even the one party dictatorship imposed in 1966 was likely to hasten the programmed assimilation and subjugation of the people of West Cameroon. He became irascible and execrable. 8. The Oil Factor By the end of the Nigeria civil war in 1970 something else happened that convinced Ahidjo of the need to move fast with regard to his imperialist design. French oil companies had been carrying out oil exploration in West Cameroon since about 1963. Commercial quantities of oil and gas reserves had been discovered in the Federated State. Ahidjo was informed. Oil had been a critical factor in the Biafran secessionist bid. The French therefore told Ahidjo that until West Cameroon was brought under the firm control of la Republique du Cameroun through formal annexation, it would be risky investment for them to undertake oil exploitation. Furthermore, the oil discovery must be kept absolutely secret. If the information were to leak, Ahidjo would have to kiss good-bye to West Cameroon. Ahidjo listened, agreed and decided to act. Ahidjo’s speeches became more and more wordy and windy. His style became elliptical and tediously prolix. Before, he would end his speeches with ‘vive la Republique Federale du Cameroun’. Henceforth, it was only ‘vive la Republique’, then ‘vive le Cameroun’ and, after May 1972, ‘vive la Republique Unie du Cameroun’. October 1, 1961, was celebrated , throughout the Federation, as ‘Independence and Unification Day’. Thereafter, the practice became established to celebrate October 1 of each year as ‘Independence Day’ (for West Cameroon) and January 1 of each year as ‘Jour de l’Independance’ (for East Cameroun). This practice was gradually discontinued and completely dropped after May 1972. January 1 became simply the customary ‘Jour de l’An’ (New Year’s Day). Any mention of October 1 or talk of the defunct Federal Republic of Cameroon or even federalism, for that matter, became a crime of lese majeste. May 20th, the day West Cameroon was formally annexed, was decreed a so-called national day, the day of claimed ‘totale unite’ (read: annexation). The fact of the matter was that Ahidjo, who always reasoned with his tongue, had persevered in his mendacity that the territory of the Southern Cameroons is part of the territory of la Republique du Cameroun. Now he could not credibly explain how the Cameroon Federal Republic which he claimed to be merely a continuation of la Republique du Cameroun had two independence dates, 1st January and 1st October. He therefore contrived to obliterate in people’s minds and in the history books this business of independence day. So he decreed May 20 the ‘national day’ of his counterfeit ‘Republique Unie du Cameroun’.


It is a measure of the total confusion in the minds of the political leadership of la Republique du Cameroun that even after Biya discarded Ahidjo’s spurious Republique Unie du Cameroun and revived la Republique du Cameroun, he maintained the untenable fiction that May 20th is that country’s national day. This stupidity was pointed out to him by “Anglophones’ time and again. It took Biya 16 years to concede that indeed the national day of la Republique du Cameroun is 1st January, the day it achieved independence in 1960. But he still maintained 20th May, rebaptising it ‘national unity day’. October 1, he said, is ‘reunification day’. He however failed to name the entities that had ‘reunited’. Nor did he dare to tell the circumstances and terms of that ‘reunification’. According to the muddled thinking of the leadership of la Republique du Cameroun, that country achieved, on 1st January 1960, ‘l’independance’, on 1st October 1961, ‘la reunification’, on 20th May 1972, ‘la totale unite nationale’, and on 4th February 1984, ‘l’achevement de l’unite nationale’. This is a monumental falsehood and it is amazing that the authorities of la Republique du Cameroun should so collectively delude themselves. They should simply have come out in the open and admitted that they had all along had predatory ambitions over the Southern Cameroons and had set out to annex it; and that 20th May is indeed annexation day. It is always conveniently forgotten by la Republique du Cameroun that the actual choice which created the Union of the two Cameroons (and in the absence of which the Union would not have come into existence) was made by the Southern Cameroons, not la Republique du Cameroun. It is for this reason that the pretended 1972 ‘referendum’ is additionally assailable on the ground that it was not confined to the people of the Southern Cameroons as it should have been. In 1968 Ahidjo had claimed a power to amend the Federal Constitution by decree when and how he saw fit. In March 1970 he sacked Vice President Foncha, earlier elected with him on the same ticket. He then replaced Foncha with Muna as Vice President of the Federation. Then he issued a decree amending the Constitution. The amendment permitted Muna to combine the offices of Vice President of the Federation and Prime Minister of West Cameroon. And yet only five years previously he had issued a decree amending the Constitution by providing that the two offices could not be held by one and the same person. Ahidjo had in fact decided to purge from the Federal Government, the West Cameroon Government (he had by this time also assumed a power to appoint the Ministers in the Governments of the Federated States) and the Federal National Assembly those ‘Anglophones’ who enjoyed overwhelming support in West Cameroon and who, therefore, were perceived as likely to stand in the way of his annexation agenda. A year later, in 1971, Fonlon was dropped from the Cabinet. Nzo Ekhah-Nghaky was also dropped though later put up and elected in mid-1972 as OAU Secretary-General. For the record, the point must be made that Nzo’s candidature was presented as an after thought following several inconclusive rounds of voting, at the Rabat Summit, to choose the next OAU Secretary General. Ahidjo’s preferred choice for the job was his northern brother, Ambassador Haman Dicko and he put him up for election. But Dicko failed to get the job seemingly because he was Francophone and the outgoing Secretary General, Dialllo Telli, was a Francophone and had been on the job from 1963-1972. 9. The Treasonable Conspiracy Against the Federation


Rumours of secession and the end of the Federation were quite rife in Cameroon between 1966-1971. But these were often dismissed as false and mischievously sensational prattle. In 1969 Ahidjo was directly asked about the future of the Cameroon Federation. He was characteristically evasive but succeeded in creating the impression that federalism, albeit a centralist one, was alive and safe in Cameroon: “[W]e have a strong centralized federation ... I repeat, national unity does not necessarily mean that you must have a unitary state. There are examples of very solid unity in Federal States or even Confederations.” He had spoken in a similar vein in 1961, before unification: “Vous savez, que lors de nos conversations anterieures avec les representants du parti gouvernemental du Cameroun meridional, nous avions arrete de commun accord les grandes lignes d’une reunification qui s’effectuarait sous une forme federale adaptee aux conditions particulieres de nos territoires. Certains de nos compatriots, soit par ignorance, soit souvent avec le dessein de troubler les esprits avancent qu’un Etat federal ne repose pas sur une vraie unite. Ceux-la ignorent, ou feignent d’oublier, que les citoyens des nations comme les Etats unis d’Amerique, la Suisse, l’Allemagne de l’ouest, l’URSS, qui sont des Etats federaux, sont aussi unis que les citoyens d’autres nations du monde.” (My emphasis) Before the March 1970 presidential ‘elections’ Ahidjo hinted to his aids the possibility of his resignation as Republican President. Charles Onana Awana is said to have dissuaded him with the following revealing statement . “Toi seul,” Onana Awana told Ahidjo rather conspiratorially, “tu peux achever l’unification.” (“Only you can bring unification to completion.”). So there was still an unfinished ‘unification’ business! And what might that business be? This was 1970. Unification is supposed to have taken place on 1st October 1961. So what unification again was Onana Awana talking about in 1970 that still needed to be completed? Ahidjo and his political coterie always disguised the predatory ambitions of la Republique du Cameroun regarding the Southern Cameroons by a dishonest pun on the name ‘Cameroun’ and the words ‘reunification’ and ‘unification’. To them, what took place on 1st October 1961 was simply ‘reunification’ and not ‘unification’ which, as of 1970, was, so they reasoned, still to be attained. During the legislative ‘elections’ of June 1970 Ahidjo made a speech in which he extolled the virtues of the presidential regime. He said whereas the Federal Government operated a presidential system the State Governments operated a parliamentary system. That was self evident. Why was Ahidjo stating the obvious? Was this a hint that he intended to institute a presidential system at state level as well? Rumours of an impending constitutional amendment were rife. Ahidjo always toyed with the constitution at his whims and caprices. He feigned to be unaware of these rumours, giving the impression that his statement was a mere inconsequential aside. In reality Ahidjo was up to some mischief. But there were some pressing matters of domestic and international politics he needed to attend to first. For example, Ouandie and his UPC insurgents were making headlines, though they would be captured in August and together with Bishop Ndongmo put on trial in December; the French President, Georges Pompidou, was coming to town, the first ever official visit to

the country by a French Head of State; OCAM Summit had held in Yaounde in January 1970 and would be holding in Fort-Lamy (N’Djamena) in January 1971. After this interlude, Ahidjo reverted to the matter he had hinted at a little over a year earlier. “Ahidjo est un maitre du secret. Murir un projet sans en laisser percer le moindre soupcon, le preparer sans hate en y associant des hommes qui ne s’en rendent nullement compte, sont des composantes essentielles de son art de gouverner.” Ahidjo had something up his sleeves and all that remained was for him to recruit others, Cassius-like, to his plot. It is in the nature of all plotters to protest their innocence if anyone happens to intimate some inkling of their plot. Minister Nzo Ekhah-Nghaky, a graduate of Ibadan University, may have read Ahidjo’s mind or may have correctly interpreted Ahidjo’s hint. In early 1971, he is said to have suggested to Ahidjo, perhaps testily, that he should transform the Federation into a unitary state. Sensing that Nzo may have correctly read his mind, Ahidjo contrived to throw him off the scent by replying in a pretended offhanded manner, “You will do that after me.” But the overthrow of the federal constitutional order was precisely what he had in mind. After all, the federated state of East Cameroun was an expensive fiction: it was a mere administrative structure closely dependent on the Federal Government, its Ministers being seen as deputy Federal Ministers. In fact, the distinction between the Federal Government and the East Cameroun Government was intentionally obfuscated. East Cameroun was the ‘good guy’, while West Cameroon was the ‘bad’ one giving giving Ahidjo insomnia: West Cameroon was increasingly assertive on the issue of autonomy; the end of the Nigerian civil war reawoke in West Cameroon the magnetism of the Nigerian Federation; oil and gas had been discovered in West Cameroon and this secret could not be kept for long. Ahidjo therefore figured he had to move fast. All the more so as West Cameroon was becoming more and more restive. Rumours were rife of an impending Catholic-backed new political party in Buea and of secession (Republic of Ambazonia). The content of these rumours were corroborated by filed intelligence reports from Ahidjo’s secret police field operatives in West Cameroon. A quarterly report for the 1971-1972 period said in pertinent parts: “La nomination d’un ressortissant de l’Etat Federe du Cameroun Oriental a la tete de la Region Administrative du Cameroun Occidental en remplacement de Mr. Jean-Claude Ngoh, Inspecteur Federal de l’Administration sortant a ete mal accueillie dans les milieux de la region administrative du Cameroun Occidental, car ces memes milieux depuis fort longtemps nourrissent l’ambition de voir un de leur nomme Inspecteur Federal de l’Administration pour le Cameroun Occidental. A cet effet ils ont qualifie le Gouvernement Federal de vouloir minimiser et traiter les ressortissants du Cameroun Occidental d’incapables et l’Etat Federe lui-meme de colonie du Cameroun Oriental. Ces commentaires ont pousse jusqu’a compare la population du Cameroun Occidental a celle du Gabon pour se demander si cette partie de la Republique Federal n’etait pas en droit de proclamer son independance. Ces propos sont souvent avances par de grands milieux voire la femme de rue.” (My emphasis)


Evidently believing that the above attitude of West Cameroon was supported by the USA and the UK, the report concluded that the technical assistance personnel from these countries should be closely watched and phased out. “Le personnel de l’Assistance Technique Americaine et Britannique doit etre surveille de pres au Cameroun Occidental et doit etre decroissant en effectif.” The report for the three months period running from January to March 1972 states that a four-day meeting of four KNDP leaders met in the palace of Chief Mukete in Kumba and that there was an impending creation of an opposition Christian Democratic Party. The report further states that the would-be party was led by Foncha and that its leadership included John Eyumbi Sona, Benedict Lawan, Jua, Lafon, and John Tatah. The report concludes that the people of West Cameroon should be appropriately educated to get them out of their ‘pipe dream’ of a new political party and separate independence. “La majorite des ressortissants de cette region, opiniatrement attaches a leurs idees antiques, ont besoin d’une education appropriee de la part des responsables administartifs et politiques pour sortir de leur chimeres. ... L’education a dispenser visera a obtenir la reconversion des mentalites des individus qui devront abandonner leurs vieilles ideologies politiques, sociales, culturelles et traditionnelles en cedant place aux nouveaux objectifs politiques, sociaux et culturels preconises par l’UNC.” As Ahidjo saw it, there was clearly need to move fast. News of a new political party sponsored by the Catholic church cannot be taken lightly as its emergence would signal his doom. He had stepped on the toes of the Catholic church not only once. He seemed always to treat Catholic Ministers in Government rather shabbily. West Cameroonians such as Jua, Lafon, Foncha and Fonlon, all of them Catholics, had been dismissed in a most discourteous manner. Bishop Ndongmo had been used by Ahidjo and then arrested and given a life jail. The Catholic church had denounced the trial and put the defence of the Bishop in the hands of two West Cameroonian able and prominent lawyers, Barristers Gorji Dinka and Luke Sendze, both of them Catholics. These two lawyers had exposed Ahidjo’s duplicity and had requested the trial judge to subpoena Ahidjo to come and take the witness stand and be cross-examined, a request the judge and Ahidjo evidently considered to be seditious. Ahidjo saw his hold on power in serious jeopardy. He decided to act fast but cautiously. However, typical of his character of always concealing his true intentions, he pretended he was in no hurry. He knew from private conversations with members of his political coterie and other individuals that there were risks involved in what he was about to do. But he reasoned that the game was worth the candle. By 1970 the practice of celebrating 1st October had virtually fallen into desusetude. Then suddenly, on 1 October 1971, Ahidjo resuscitated it saying it was the 10th anniversary of ‘reunification’ and so needed to be celebrated with pomp and pageantry. In reality, the reason for organising the event was to use it, given its historical importance, to make a statement. “Human endeavours”, he enigmatically declared on that occasion, “have to be completed, perfected and improved upon”. Another hint at something to come. But apparently nobody picked up the hint; at least not the West Cameroon political elite.


Ahidjo was a confirmed schemer. It is a matter of speculation how Ahidjo went about recruiting his co-conspirators. But one thing is certain. He had the knack of involving others in his plots without their realizing it at first. In all probability the plot started as a wheel conspiracy, Ahidjo being its hub. It is also a matter of conjecture when the conspirators first began meeting as a group. But the likelihood is that they first met before May 1972, perhaps the previous month. Ahidjo’s initial confederates in crime were Paul Biya (Beti), Charles Onana Awana (Beti), Moussa Yaya Sarkifada (Haussa), and Francois Sengat Kuo (Duala) who was brought in primarily because of his knowledge in matters constitutional. It was essentially a Haussa-Beti plot. There was no Bamileke in it. There was no Bassa in it. There was no ‘Anglophone’ in it; not even Egbe and Muna, perceived Ahidjo stooges, or even Nzo who, some say, mooted the idea of a unitary State to Ahidjo in 1971. The Bassas and Bamilekes could not be trusted. Implacable foes of Ahidjo, they had taken to the maquis since 1955 and waged a bloody insurgency which Ahidjo, aided by French troops, only managed to crush in late 1970. Nor could any ‘Anglophone’ be trusted to go along with a plot which involved the treacherous stabbing of West Cameroon in the back ---- the loss of its self-government and legal personality and the revolutionary overthrow of the protective federal constitutional order. To involve an ‘Anglophone’ in the plot would be too risky. He might leak the plan. And the people of West Cameroon might start trouble. If, indeed, the idea of a formal annexation of West Cameroon under the thin disguise of a unitary state had originated from Nzo, and if, indeed, Ahidjo thought Nzo a credible proponent of annexation, surely he would have recruited Nzo into his conspiracy. The truth of the matter is that Ahidjo knew only too well that not a single ‘Anglophone’, no matter his or her political leaning, would have gone along with an adventure so ignominious, so monstrous and so criminal. Even today, there is not a single worthy Southern Cameroonian who accepts what happened in that fateful month of May 1972. 10. The Forcible Overthrow of the Federal Constitutional Order Although Ahidjo swore his confederates to secrecy about his impending coup the possibility of leakage through careless talk could not totally be discounted. There was therefore some apprehension as to what the reaction in West Cameroon might be in the event of a premature leak. The conspirators decided to take care of this concern. The alertness of the troops stationed in West Cameroon would be upgraded and the harassment and intimidation of the people of West Cameroon intensified. Secret police reports (known as ‘Rapports Trimestriels de Synthese’) from West Cameroon for the period running up to May 1972 state that army patrols had increased and that army raids were frequently carried out “as a psychological warfare against the population.” Apart from this strong-arm tactic against West Cameroon, two other tactics were deployed. West Cameroon political leaders of whatever political hue, in Yaounde and especially in Buea, were to be closely shadowed. The conspirators would act with maximum surprise. In April 1972 all Federal Inspectors of Administration were reshuffled; but this was a mere feint. Ahidjo wanted a new Federal Inspector for West Cameroon who would keep an attentive eye on West Cameroonian politicians and their activities. If he had replaced only the Federal Inspector in Buea, West Cameroon political elite would probably have had an inkling of his impending action and probably organise resistance. So he made

the reshuffle appear routine. Then on 17-18 of the same month he journeyed to West Cameroon, ostensibly to inaugurate the National Social Insurance Fund office in Buea. In reality, he was there on a mission to assess the situation for himself and to ascertain whether a West Cameroon uprising would be likely in the event of an overthrow of the Federation. He definitely went there to reconnoitre the State before his coup. after that exercise he must have come to the settled conclusion that the State hadn’t the foggiest idea of his plot and that the surprise element in his plot will obviate the danger of a West Cameroon uprising. So, on May 6, 1972, three weeks after his reconnaissance of West Cameroon, Ahidjo summoned, by radio announcement, the Federal National Assembly, at its usual place of sitting, for 11 o’clock in the forenoon. He also summoned, by radio announcement as well, the Political Bureau of the CNU, le parti unique, at its usual place of meeting and at 11 o’clock too. The reason for this ploy was to ensure that prospective dissidents do not have time to organise resistance, which might be the case if news of the coup were brought to these two bodies at different dates or times. The meeting time was 11 a.m. but, as was the custom, everyone was expected to have been seated by 10 a.m to wait for Ahidjo. Armed gendarmes were always deployed inside and outside those meeting places. As from 10 a.m therefore, members of the two bodies were in effect shut up in their respective meeting places, waiting for Ahidjo to come and tell them what urgent business had prompted him to summon them so precipitately . Ahidjo first went to the Political Bureau. He was closeted with its members for five minutes. In five minutes he told his somewhat perplexed listeners the Federation had served its objective in facilitating ‘reunification’ (read: absorption of ‘Anglophones’) and that he was on his way to the Assembly to demand (read: impose) a constitutional revision instituting a presidentialist unitary state. Ahidjo’s word was the law and none dared to contradict him. The gathering then trooped out and the convoy drove to the Federal National Assembly. There he made a long and circumlocutory speech which in substance repeated what he told the political bureau a few minutes earlier. Everyone knew at that moment that the Federation was dead. He justified his treasonable act on the grounds of cost and the claimed poverty of West Cameroon. But this was a mere excuse, a mere decoration -- mere words. Because, even as he spoke he knew he was lying in his teeth. He had deliberately distorted the functioning of the Federation. He had purposefully deprived West Cameroon of taxing powers and control over its economy. Oil and gas had been discovered in West Cameroon. Ahidjo was not only a confirmed liar. He had also raised lying to the level of political art. In his speech Ahidjo said he was going to ‘consult’ the people of the Federation as a whole by referendum. That was a monumental joke. There was no question of consultation as Ahidjo had already carried out what he himself called the ‘Peaceful Revolution’. If anything, it was a mere question of ratification. But even that had already been done because it was common knowledge that what proceeded from Ahidjo’s mouth was the law as well as the wishes of the people. Besides, the result of the claimed referendum was already known even as Ahidjo was making his periphrastic speech. On that portentous day of May 6, 1972, the West Cameroon Government was, to all intents and purposes, sacked and the Federal Government overthrown. Ahidjo took care to provide for his own continuation in office, deriving his authority not from any law but from his revolutionary

act. He gave himself untrammelled powers. He had indeed carried out a revolution, but it was ‘pacific’ only in the sense that there had been no massacre. The so-called referendum was scheduled to take place on May 20th, two weeks after Ahidjo’s coup. In the mean time Ahidjo got his partners in crime to draft, in total secrecy, the ‘constitution’ of his pretended ‘Republique Unie du Cameroun’. Two other confederates were now brought in to join the gang, the Haussa Ousmane Mey (mainly to ensure, in far away Garoua, the typing of the gang’s constitution) and the French law Professor Maurice Duverger (to correct and okay the document). On 11 May, Elangwe and Muna were dispatched to Buea and Bamenda respectively as ‘campaign’ team leaders. Taken completely unawares, West Cameroonians were unable to come up with a response. They did not even bother to challenge the highly improbable 99.999% ‘yes’ vote Ahidjo claimed to have got. Fixing of election results was a common place practice under Ahidjo and continues to be the practice under Biya. Selected portions of Ahidjo’s ‘constitution’ were read over radio, contentious ones being bypassed. There was no television at the time and few were the people who owned radio sets. There was no discussion, no debate, whether in or out of the Federal National Assembly. Of course, the Assembly had practically been dissolved by Ahidjo the day he addressed it two weeks earlier. Even so, there was not even a pretence of a public debate on that privately drafted secret ‘constitution’. The exact content of the ‘constitution’ still remained a mystery. Indeed by voting day on 20th May not many people had actually seen, less still, studied, the actual text of Ahidjo’s ‘constitution’. West Cameroonians contemptuously dismissed the so-called referendum as a charade, saying the choice was between ‘yes’ and ‘oui’. The unitary ‘constitution’, brought in through the back door, became effective on 2 June 1972 and ushered in a period of presidential absolutism. Ahidjo, President of the Federal Republic of Cameroon, had murdered the same Federation he had taken oath to defend. It is a measure of the frivolity with which the political leadership of la Republique du Cameroun take any oath of office that twelve years later, Paul Biya would do exactly what Ahidjo did in 1972. In 1982 Ahidjo appointed Biya to succeed him as Head of State of ‘la Republique Unie du Cameroun’. In assuming office Biya swore to defend that entity. Like master, like pupil. Biya turned round and killed the very ‘Republique Unie du Cameroun’ he had taken oath to defend. Just as Ahidjo had come up with his own ‘Republique’, he too came up with his own ‘Republique’. He revived the defunct ‘Republique du Cameroun’ and anointed himself its President. He did not even bother to go through the motion of a pretended referendum. And like Ahidjo before him he did not seek the people’s sanction to become the President of his ‘Republique’. 11. The Revival of the Extinct Republique du Cameroun Paul Biya served for 15 years in the shadow of Ahidjo, first as his Secretary General and then as his Prime Minister. Curiously, he remained an unknown quantity. He so feared Ahidjo that he avoided visibility and kept a very low profile. Before November 1982, few people had either seen or heard him. That patient waiting in the wings eventually paid off. Ahidjo soon designated him heir presumptive and in November 1982 appointed him Head

of State. At once he had a photograph taken of himself, sitting like a Sultan. Thousands of copies were then distributed, country-wide, like some election material. He also put his effigy on the currency. And he had a passport-size photograph of himself permanently affixed to the front page of the State-owned and controlled slender Cameroon Tribune newspaper. All this was a full scale publicity drive which was pushed a step further with the advent of television in 1984. Biya has been President for 18 years already and throughout this period he has striven to ape his erstwhile benefactor in every material particular. First of all, like Ahidjo, he has tried to create something of a mystery around himself in an effort to elicit respect through fear. But whereas Ahidjo kept his ear to the ground, appeared responsive and evidently loved public speaking, Biya has developed a culture of silence. He cuts the image of a deaf and insensitive recluse. He is always absent from his office and at relevant international fora. It is as if he is trying to run away from something. It would seem that his croaking voice inhibits him from engaging in more than minimal discourse or public speaking . His speeches are short, banal, repetitive, boring and uninspiring. Unlike Ahidjo also, Biya has attempted to ‘royalize’ the republic. Some refer to him as the Royal President or His Majesty the President. Efforts to establish a republican monarchy can be seen in Biya’s personalization of authority coupled with his quest for aristocratic effect. He has an egregarious appetite for splendid attire, for a fleet of large expensive cars, for palatial accommodation (State House is appropriately named le Palais Presidentiel), and for other forms of conspicuous consumption and voluptuous life style. Biya, like Ahidjo, is an autocrat with little regard for honesty, legality and the rule of law. But whereas Ahidjo remained within the republican mould, Biya has gravitated towards royalty and would probably crown himself ‘emperor’ a la Bokassa, if he can. Secondly, like Ahidjo though, he is not averse to alcohol. Thirdly, politically, Biya’s ‘rigour and moralisation’ slogan is an unashamed plagiarism of the same slogan which Ahidjo had coined at the CNU congress in Bafoussam in 1980. Fourthly, above all, Biya pursued and completed Ahidjo’s annexation agenda. This is not surprising in view of the fact that he was one of the 1972 conspirators. Already, after the 1972 overthrow of the Federal Constitution, ‘Francophone’ elite began to peddle the view that “la Republique Unie du Cameroun constitue la derniere etape; il resterait peut-etre a supprimer le qualificatif ‘Unie’ pour parler de la Republique du Cameroun.” This was in effect advocacy for the revival of the defunct entity which achieved independence from France on 1st January 1960 under the name and style of ‘la Republique du Cameroun’ and which became extinct following its federal union with the Southern Cameroons on 1st October 1961. The same elite had in 1961 stated the intention of la Republique du Cameroun to annex the Southern Cameroons thus: “Le 1er octobre [1961] on va saisir le Camerun du Sud.” That same year, the ‘Cercle Culturel Camerounais’, a group founded by Republique du Cameroun students in France, was vigorously promoting the idea that the Cameroon Federation was


“... une federation fondamentalement provisoire, transitoire et dont le dynamisme puisse nous acheminer, le plus tot possible, vers un etat unitaire ...” It is clear that the ‘Cercle’, like other Republique elite, like the UPC, perceived that ‘etat unitaire’ as la Republique du Cameroun. So, in November 1983, Biya dispatched Foumane Akame, his relative and Minister of Territorial Administration at the time, to the ‘Assemblee Nationale de la Republique Unie du Cameroun’ to inform it of his decision to revive la Republique du Cameroun. Foumane Akame told that handclapping chamber that the word ‘United’ was misleading as it gave people the mistaken impression that the country consisted of two States that had united, and that in reality there had all along been only one State, la Republique du Cameroun. That State needed to be revived so that people do not continue to have the wrong impression. The Chamber applauded. On the 4th of February 1984 Biya issued a proclamation reviving la Republique du Cameroun which had been extinct since 1st October 1961. At once Biya was transformed from President of ‘la Republique Unie du Cameroun’ to President of ‘la Republique du Cameroun.’ The Legislature, the Judiciary, the Civil Service, the Military, and the Police all experienced a similar transmogrification, over night. Biya had been in power for just a year. Why was he so much in a hurry to revive la Republique du Cameroun? After all, he was among the Gang of Five that chose the name ‘Republique Unie du Cameroun’. If the word ‘Unie” was misleading why did they settle for it in 1972? And who were those people said to be misled by the word ‘United’? The revival of la Republique du Cameroun appears to have been a panicky, confused and unimaginative move. ‘Anglophone’ resistance to the 1972 annexation was heating up. Seething discontent had been manifest since that year. But Ahidjo had managed to cover it up through a policy of terrorisation of the people. Abroad however, an ‘Anglophone’ movement emerged in the USA and an ‘Anglophone’ political party was created in neighbouring Nigeria. Internally, ‘Anglophone’ elite and students were visibly restive. The accession of Biya to power appeared to offer a window of opportunity. Perhaps this new President might listen to them and undo what Ahidjo had done in 1972. At that time it was not known that Biya had been involved in the 1972 treasonable conspiracy. In 1983, incipient ‘Anglophone’ revolt manifested itself when Biya tried unsuccessfully to impose a Francophone-type examination syllabus on ’Anglophone’ secondary school children. The strong political connotation which this issue took coupled with the united front presented by all ‘Anglophones’ gave Biya some idea of the level and extent of ‘Anglophone’ discontent. Talk about domination, about annexation, was rife. Various memoranda were submitted on this matter, no less by Hon. S. T. Muna who was at that time Speaker of the Assembly. In the midst of all this, word came from the police that an Ahidjo-sponsored plot to assassinate Biya had been discovered. Biya and his Beti inner circle were alarmed and appeared to have lost any sense of composure. They seemed to have worked out a tactic. Their ‘boys’ in the army and police would take care of Ahidjo’s continuing challenge, while the politicians would deal with the ‘Anglophone menace’. ‘Anglophones’ were increasingly reminding the Biya rulership that two countries had come together on 1 October 1961 to form a union of equals in law. Biya’s unintelligent assessment of the situation was that after the abolition of the federation the only thing that

keeps reminding ‘Anglophones’ of a union of two countries was the word ‘United’ in the name ‘United Republic of Cameroon’. If that word were excised, he appeared to have reasoned, ‘Anglophones’ would banish from their minds the idea of two countries and accept their fate as an annexed people. Moreover, la Republique du Cameroun would then rise born again from its ashes, like a phoenix, and resume its personality under both municipal and international law. There was much talk about ‘une Republique indivisible’ as though the word ‘indivisible’ is a magical spell that ensures togetherness, and as though in its absence ‘la Republique’ at once becomes ‘divisible’. The reality was that the relationship that had developed between the Southern Cameroons and la Republique du Cameroun was the symbiotic type that exists between the horse and the rider, between the hostage and the hijacker. Biya’s revival of la Republique du Cameroun patently represented the final act of repudiation of union between the Southern Cameroons and la Republique du Cameroun. From that moment, the Southern Cameroons became free to restore its independence and sovereignty. Continuing occupation of the said Southern Cameroons by la Republique du Cameroun could be nothing else but alien subjugation, colonisation. When this telling line of argument was first advanced in 1984, the Biya regime was taken aback. It had not anticipated this compelling legal argument. It argued, unconvincingly, that what was done was a mere inconsequential name change. If the name change was a mere bagatelle why was it then necessary to have effected it. The change certainly had, and was intended to have, a far reaching import. Biya and his men knew, or ought to have known, that revival of la Republique du Cameroun would entail the death of Ahidjo’s counterfeit ‘Republique Unie du Cameroun’ and the symmetrical revival of the Southern Cameroons. In 1993 when politicians of mainland Tanzania wanted to revive Tanganyika, the ever perceptive Julius Nyerere bluntly told them, “If you revive Tanganyika, you will kill Tanzania.” They understood and refrained from their planned revival of Tanganyika. Could Biya and his men have been so daft as not to have known the consequence of their action? I very much doubt. In any case, politics, like nature, abhors a vacuum. The symmetrical revival of the Southern Cameroons was publicly proclaimed by the Southern Cameroons National Council (SCNC) on December 30th, 1999. The Council’s immediate task is to get la Republique du Cameroun to withdraw its colonial administration and occupying forces from the country. Current efforts are focused on achieving that goal. 12. Conclusion The union between the former British-administered Southern Cameroons and the former French-administered Republique du Cameroun was beset with one major difficulty that eventually led to its collapse. The difficulty came from the two individuals, Ahidjo and Biya, who became Republican Presidents. Both of them are natives of la Republique du Cameroon. And each saw the union through the eyes of a native of la Republique du Cameroun . None of them looked at the union from his elevated position as Union President and foremost guardian of the Constitution. Why was this the case? The reason is that right from the outset of the Union the leadership of la Republique du Cameroun had a hidden agenda to annex the Southern Cameroons. They set about to achieve that objective through manoeuvres, tricks and falsehood. From the very beginning therefore, the Union took a dangerous path, sliding fast down a dark and perilous road, without compass or hope. At the end of the day the failure of the Union must be laid at the feet of bad

leadership coupled with an unwholesome greed for territorial expansion. Bad leadership, they say, is like a rotten corpse, it invites hyenas and flies. Territorial expansion, that belongs to a bygone age. Selected List of Source Material - Ahidjo, A., Anthologie des Discourses 1968-1978, 1979. - Ahidjo, A., Recueils des Discourses Presidentiels 1958-1968, 1968 - Ardener, E., ‘The Nature of the Reunification of Cameroon 1960-1966’, 1967. - Bandolo, H., La Flamme et la Fumee, 1985. - Benjamin, J., Les Camerounais Occidentaux, 1972. - Case Concerning the Northern Cameroons (Cameroun v. UK), 1963 - Gaillard, Ph., Ahmadou Ahidjo, Patriote et Despote, 1994. - Gardinier, D., Cameroun: UN Challenge to French Policy, 1963. - Gorji-Dinka, The New Social Order, 1985. - Gorji-Dinka, ‘Proposals to Neutralise the Revolt of Southern Cameroon,’ 1986. - Johnson, W., The Cameroon Federation, 1970. - Mbu, A.N.T., Civil Disobedience in Cameroun, 1993.

Messmer, P., Memoires. Apres tant de Batailles, 1992.

- Ngayap, P., Le Cameroun, Qui Gouverne, 1983. - Njoya, A.N., Le Cameroun dans les Relations Internationales, 1976. - Stark, F. M., ‘Federalism in Cameroon: The Shadow and the Reality’, 1976. - Zang-Atangana, J-M., Les Forces Politiques au Cameroun Reunifie, 1989. - Archival material.
Copyright C.Anyangwer,

Lusaka, April 2000