Cocoa prices in Cameroon are surging as farmers in the biggest producing regions flee an escalating conflict between government forces and a movement that wants independence for English-speaking territories.
Producer pay in the world’s fifth-biggest cocoa grower jumped by more than two-fifths in the week through July 3, compared with the previous seven days, according to figures from the Cameroon National Association of Cocoa and Coffee Producers. The disruption of farming activities in the Northwest and Southwest regions exacerbate a decline in output from the smaller mid-crop, Michael Ndoping, director general of the National Cocoa and Coffee Board, said by phone Wednesday from the economic capital, Douala.
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Ekema Patrick On Bended Knees Amidst Buea’s Growing Economic Plunge
The Irksome Mayor of Buea, Patrick Ekema Essunge, has literally knelt down in front of economic operators in the Buea Municipality, to shun all calls of economic sabotaged by the Ambazonian restoration forces.
He made the call, Thursday July 5 2018, during an emergency meeting grouping municipal and economic operators of Buea. The very low-attended meeting also witnessed the presence of huge contingent of the terrorist Cameroun military.
His call comes amidst the dwindling economic situation of Buea precipitated by 100% respect for ghost towns, intermittent halt of municipal activities due to gun battle between the restoration forces and the terrorist forces of LRC.
Such events, according to Ekema Patrick, has greatly paralysed economic activities, hence, reducing the municipal revenue collection.
“There is no gainsaying that the council has been greatly affected by the recent activities in the Buea Municipality. We thought we had kicked the ghost town syndrome away from our municipality. I am very surprised to see tit come again. I am calling on all of you to remain calm and go about your normal activities while the necessary security dispositions have been put in place,” Ekema Patrick asserted.
Bragging with the security presence in the meeting, Ekema Patrick told the economic operators that security operatives are present in almost all corners of Buea, and so they should have nothing to fear, thereby, going about their normal activities.
“See how this council is guarded, even those separatists come in their number, they can never penetrate this council. It is in like manner that the entire Buea is protected. SO, what are you worrying about? Let’s come out amass on next Monday and shame those perpetrating violence in our municipality,” Ekema Patrick arrogantly said.
On their part, the business persons stressed on security, indicating that on several occasions that their premises have been vandalised, the council nor the government, did nothing substantial. Instead, they were lead to leak their bleeding wounds.
“Mr Mayor, I appreciate your concern for normalcy to be restored in Buea. However, I am very concerned with the security disposition. Your council seems to be more protected than anywhere in Buea. I want recall your memory of the burning of my shop last year in Mile 17. Though you and other authorities came there and said necessary measures will be taken to compensate me, I have been left alone all along. Security is still a problem and we all know about that. So, I for one, will continue to monitor the situation, and will only open my shop when I see that all is well,” lamented Moliki Divine, a business man in Buea.
Other economic operators raised concerns on the sporadic shooting that come unprepared. Many say, in such situations, the LRC terrorist soldiers tend to victimise even them, the business persons.
“Last Friday when there was shooting in Mile, military men came in and were beating innocent people and requesting that they kneel down. Why on earth people who you claim are here to protect us, delight pleasure in brutalising the same people. I still feel, there is a missing gab between the population and the security. And until such gab is bridged, then we shall continue to live in an atmosphere of terror and uncertainty,” Pa Lambert Moki intimated.
Ekema Patrick, looking so helpless in the face of many intimidating questions, and seeing that the meeting was taken a dimension not favourable to his egoism, decided to intimated the economic operating, threatening huge sanctions on those who shall heed to economic sabotage in his municipality.
It should be noted that Ekema Patrick has built a stone wall of security around him, amidst threats to arrest and prosecute him. Returning from his refuge sought in Yaounde, Ekema Patrick has redoubled his security dispositions.
However, he threatens innocent denizens to go out and expose themselves to calamities.
By Lucas Muma,
Managing Editor – BaretaNews
100 Days of Southern Cameroon’s Internet Blackout , International Community Still Mute
On Sunday October 1, 2017, the government of La Republique du Cameroun (LRC), once again shut down internet services in Southern Cameroons. Today January 6, 2018, marks exactly 100 days since the black out.
From Bamenda, through Buea to Mamfe, life remain totally on a stand still amid the internet shut down. Economic activities have been highly touched with start-ups (social entrepreneurs) being the hardest hit.
“People have taken the last seven years to build the Silicon Mountain community with their bare hands and no government support. Now, the government’s one move is about to crush all that. It is so frustrating,” a senior staff lamented.
“100 days is too much. We have lost quite a lot due to this internet shut down. The government cannot be preaching digital economy, yet, impeding the growth of the sector. I feel so battered by the government’s move,” cried out Eric Eforme, a digital economist in Bamenda.
Yet, in a press release on 28 September 2017, the LRC through its Minister of Posts and Telecommunications Mrs Libom Likeng, denied allegations of an imminent Internet shutdown.
For Julie Owono, executive director of Internet Without Borders,
“The incoherence of Cameroonian authorities is obvious, the reality is contrary to their declarations of good intentions, which are intended to reassure the international community. This new Internet shutdown is contrary to numerous commitments by Cameroon, notably on the right to access to the Internet. In addition, it violates the recent UN resolutions condemning the deliberate disruption of Internet.”
This new Internet shutdown is contrary to the commitments made by LRC to the United Nations Organization on 13 April 2017, which established access to the Internet as a prerequisite
to the end of the political conflict between the government and protest movements in Southern Cameroons.
Southern Cameroons, which has been in a political crisis since November 2016, was deprived of the Internet for three months from January to April 2017.
“Internet Without Borders is again concerned about this voluntary interruption of access to the Internet imposed to a quarter of the population of Cameroon. The previous network interruption lasted three months, from January to April 2017. It was the longest shut down by a country in Africa. Its impact on the country’s economy was devastating and had been valued at more than 4 million euros.” Julie Owono reminded.
Though many descending voices have trumpeted condemnation over LRC repressive actions on the people of Southern Cameroons, the despotic government remain adamant.
Nonetheless, the international community is expected to do more. According Professor Ameachi Godwill, Nigerian US based lecturer at the Texas University, the international community must device new means of stopping dictatorship governments who use basic livelihood provisions, to push forward their agenda.
“The international is becoming more weakening to me. We cannot allow dictators to consolidate grip in power by preventing people from having their basic utilities. I think that the international community must do more to pressure the government of Paul Biya to reinstate internet in Southern Cameroons, and also make a firm pledge never to do it again,” Pro Godwill said.
The people of Southern Cameroons remain steadfast on separating with LRC. Amid the internet shut down, denizens use alternative methods like acquiring the Virtual Private Network (VPN), to access internet.
By Lucas Muma,
Managing Editor – BaretaNews
Limbe ‘CPDM’ City Council Budgets 9 Billion For 2018 Amid Impending Elections
The Limbe City Council (LCC), has voted nine billion, one hundred and ten million Francs as budget to run the municipality in 2018. The council largely dominated by militants of the Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (CPDM) political party, increased the budget from seven million to the said amount, witnessing a 39% increase.
The budget increase comes amid heighten certainty that at least three elections shall hold in 2018. Opinion holders say the City council is stealthily increasing the budget so as to divert revenue to funding campaigns of Paul Biya’s CPDM party.
“We all know the trick these CPDM people do. They shall cut a good chunk of the money and sponsor election rigging during the up coming elections. Unfortunately, things have changed since they invented this their old trick. We shall use the social media to expose them,” Danki Emmanuel, a politician in Limbe.
Andre Motanga Mojimba, the Government Delegate (GD) of the Limbe City Council (LCC), said the increment will go a long way to improving the lives and livelihood of the residents of Limbe.
“Limbe is geometrically growing; there is high need to restructure the city. The additional budget will cater for a new park for vehicles and motorcycles. We shall also expand the City’s main market and upgrade our technical division so as to fight against floods that is ravaging many parts of the city,” Motanga said.
Nonetheless, it was announced during the council session that the amount to run the Limbe Festival for Arts and Culture, an annual event, will be significantly stepped up to accommodate an avalanche of innovations coming up in 2018.
By Lucas Muma,
Managing Editor – BaretaNews
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