France, LRC: The Hidden Agenda

Q9. Was the annexation of the British Southern Cameroons a hidden agenda of France and LRC?
A. Yes. Compelling evidence of this hidden agenda has only recently been provided by one of France's policy makers, Mr. Pierre Messmer, one time governor of French Cameroun (195657), who later became France's Minister for the Armed Forces, and still later French Prime Minister. In his book LES BLANCS S'EN VONT, Recits de decolonisation, Edition Albin Michel, S.A. 1998, pp. 114-134. He concluded: "To implement the results of the plebiscite, the governments (of the Southern Cameroons and LRC) met in constitutional conference in Fumban, in Bamun country, familiar to both delegations on July 17 1961. President Ahidjo from a position of strength submitted for debate a fake Federal draft constitution which had been cleverly crafted by his French jurists. Ngu Foncha had no counter project. From a weak position, since the population which he represents does not exceed a quarter of that of French Cameroun even in economic terms, Ngu Foncha accepted without discussion what was in effect an annexation. The new constitution came into force on 1st October, 1961. A joke was rife in Duala and Yaunde that the United Cameroun was a bilingual francophone country.

BSCCC No. 2

British Southern
La Republique du Cameroun (former French Cameroun) ha, with the assistance of its sponsor and neocolonial master, France, been carrying out a world-wide campaign to justify its annexation and colonization of the former British Southern Cameroons. In their campaign, they have distorted the historical record and misinformed people and countries around the world. This brochure and others in the BSCCC series are intended to reach out with the facts and to promote a better understanding of the political conflict that has been smoldering between the two former UN Trust Territories since 1961.

Cameroons And La Republique du Cameroun

British Southern Cameroons Mission
2121 K Street, NW Suite 800 Washington, DC 20005 Phone: (202) 261-6595 Fax: (202) 261-3508 Phone: (202) 261-6595 Fax: (202) 261-3508 www.southerncameroons.org

© Copyright BSCPA

A Publication of the British Southern Cameroons Communications Commission

A Federationof Equal States
Q1. What was the basis of the UN imposed union on Southern Cameroons? A: When the UN decided to terminate the Trusteeship Agreement over the Southern Cameroons in 1960, it was misled by the Administering Authority, the United Kingdom, to take the ostiton that the Southern Cameroons was not economically viable to stand on its own as an independent state. The UN therefore decided that the territory would acive independence by joining either the Federation of Nigeria or the independent la Republique du Cameroun (a former UN Trust Territory under French Administration). The Southern Cameroons had made it clear to the UK that it wanted to separate from Nigeria before the latter became independent on October 1 1960. The Southern Cameroons went into negotiation with la Republique du Cameroun about the form of the union. They signed a Joint Declaration and a Joint Communique which embodied the Union Agreements for a federation of two states of equal status on October 14 1960 and those were incorporated by the UN in the TWO ALTERNATIVES document which was used in the February 11 1961 plebiscite campaigns. And so the people of the Southern Cameroons went to the plebiscite on the clear understanding that they were voting to form a Federation of two states of equal status the details of which were to be worked out at a post-plebiscite constitutional conference in which the UN and the UK would participate.

The Recolonization
Q3. Given that the federal character of the union was not to be changed, how did la Republique du Cameroun come to annex the Southern Cameroons? A: In 1972 la Republique du Cameroun used its majority population to subvert the constitution. In a fraudulent referendum the population of la Republique du Cameroun was asked if they wanted a unitary state instead of federalism. Instead of voting between YES or NO, the people were made to vote either OUI ('YES' in French) or YES. The result was as intended: 99.99%. The federation was abolished and the name of the country was changed from the Federal Republique of Cameroon to the United Republique of Cameroon. Q4. Why does the annexation of the Southern Cameroons by la Republique du Cameroun (LRC) amount to a declaration of war on the United Nations? A: In annexing the Southern Cameroons LRC has openly defied UN Resolution 224-iii of November 1954 protecting the Southern Cameroons from being annexed to the British colony of Nigeria or any neighbouring country country. Q5. What happened in 1984? A: In 1984 President Biya again by fiat of a mere decree completed the annexation of the Southern Cameroons by changing its name from the United Republic of Cameroon to la Republique du Cameroun, its original name before joining British Southern Cameroons. Q6. What does this change of name mean?

Bad Faith and Lies
Q7. What does National Integration mean? A: As used by the government of LRC, National Integration is a euphemism for annexation. The Southern Cameroons which joined the federation as a distinct entity was systemically annexed and carved into two provinces of LRC namely: the North West Province and the South West Province.

Q8. What did la Republique du Cameroun tell the UN about National Integration and annexation before 1961? A: The Prime Minister of LRC, Amadou Ahidjo told the 13th session of the United Nations on February 25 1959, "I should not like the firmness and clarity of our stand to be interpreted as a desire for integration on my part which would sond the death knell to the hopes of our brothers in the zone under British Administration." "We do not wish to bring the weight of our population to bear on our British brothers. We are not annexationists." "In other words, if our brothers of the British zone wish to unite with an independent Cameroun, we are ready to discuss the matter with them, but we will discuss it on a footing of equality." Neither late President Ahidjo nor his successor Paul Biya kept any of these undertakings.

Q2. What was the legal provision that guaranteed the agreement on federation?

A: Article 47 of the Federal Constitution stated: "No bill to amend the Constitution may be No introduced if it tends to impair the unity and integrity of the Federation."

A: This was supposed to be the final nail on the coffin of Southern Cameroons. By reverting to its pre-federation name la Republique du Cameroun was celebrating the total annexation of the Southern Cameroons. Southern Cameroonians are now a stateless people.