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Exclusive: Anglophone Soldiers To Begin Strike- Complaints of Marginalisation



Anglophone Soldiers Give Biya One Condition Or Begin Strike Immediately

The National Telegraph, a home based Anglophone Tabloid is reporting that Anglophone soldiers have given Mr. Biya one condition to look into their worries else they will be forced to follow the footsteps of the Common Law Lawyers and Anglophone teachers in the wake of what has now become known as the Anglophone struggle.

National Telegraph reports that Anglophone Soldiers who entered the military batch of 2015 in the Far North Region on September 5, 2015 has given the Presidency an ultimatum to solve a bulk of their problems otherwise they would begin a strike action. The Anglophone soldiers of that batch say they are being discriminated upon and wouldn’t take any further discrimination from the government. According to National Telegraph sources, since the soldiers stepped foot into Far North, life has been extremely difficult with little or no government attention towards their well being.

“Every day, we are traumatized by the enemy with attacks which one can hardly count. Many of our friends die, we bear all the heart aches, and we spent a year knowing that we will be replaced by others in order to rest for a while even if we have to come back, yet government completely relegates us to the background. September 2016 was programmed to replace people but we were shocked to hear that only the ”ancients”, mostly Francophones were replaced and we were left behind to continue with the new people entering”, an Anglophone soldier confided in National Telegraph.

National Telegraph further stipulated that according to their source the Ministry of Defense has a duty and obligation to replace soldiers sent to the Far North one year from date of deployment. National Telegraph revealed that Francophones are mostly taken away from the Far North while Anglophones remain in the same spot. The soldiers have also complained that the individual guns they are using always fail to shoot during attacks because it’s second-rate thereby leading to the deaths of many which is usually not reported by the government. We have very little weapons while the enemy is well armed. We need to know if really we are sent to defend the country or we are sacrificial lambs? National Telegraph insider quizzed.

Furthermore, the health of these soldiers is worrisome, according to National Telegraph, when they are sick or injured, treatment depends on the individual based on the feeding allowance that is given to them usually on the 7th, 8th or 9th of each month. It’s with that same money and so-called risk allowance that the soldiers can buy drugs by the road side to treat themselves. How can we lack medical care as soldiers defending the nation? one of the soldiers lamented.

According to the sources of National Telegraph, even the 20 permission days which is by right has been suspended and they have spent months going nowhere.
The soldiers according to National Telegraph have tabled their problems to the President and have stated in clear terms that should they not be replaced by January 28, 2017, and their bonuses paid all at once, they will begin a strike action.

National Telegraph Editorial further writes:
“The announcement by Anglophone soldiers is coming at a time when two meetings in Bamenda and Yaounde between government and representatives of the teachers and lawyers respectively ended in deadlock. The Lawyers and Teachers have been on a peaceful demonstration for months. Schools have virtually shut down in the two English-speaking regions of the North West and South West while courts have completely gone paralyzed. The lawyers have been condemning the infringement on the Common Law system amongst other things while the teachers have decried the erosion of the Anglo-Saxon system of education amongst others.

The general Anglophone community, mostly youths have now joined the struggle demanding for Federalism. Since the strike, tempers have flared and there have been clashes between civilians and security forces. In Buea, several University students were arrested and detained arbitrarily. Others were raped, beaten and looted by security forces sent to maintain peace and order. In Bamenda and Kumba, casualties were recorded with at least five protesters killed by police. Several others were injured while others still remain in detention. Businesses have been slowed down and travelling in some cases made difficult.

In the Bamenda and Yaounde meetings, Teachers and Lawyers demanded for the immediate release of all those held in detention. Meanwhile, all Anglophone Bishops of the Roman Catholic Church have written to the President pointing the need for dialogue. As at the date of this publication, President Biya who has been accused for being in power for too long is yet to make any official statement on the matter….”

BaretaNews further added that this is not new. The marginalization of Anglophones affects all strata of nationhood from all corners of the Cameroons. The fight for the restoration of West Cameroon statehood is the panacea to all these problems. It is yet to be seen if any top Anglophone military or cadets officials could break ranks and join the current struggle. This could be a major breakthrough for the Anglophone People.

This story was developed by the following National Telegraph Journalists : Clauticlaire Zamba Zamba, Brenda Kiven, Peter Adi Fonte and Sadi Musa

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