A few days ago Tikum Mbah Azonga, PhD wrote a damaging article articuilating hatred and divide bewteen the people of the Northern and Southern zones: An article which has received a lot of negative reactions from the social media. Mr. Ray Timah, a political scientist could not stomach it. He has offered one of the best academic and intellectual response to Dr. Tikum Mbah, a response which shames some of the lies spurred by Dr. Tikum and exposes a lack of knowledge on what Dr. Tikum was saying. Ray Timah writes:
I was compelled to respond to your article posted on the Facebook page of Mr.Abraham Johnson Batey concerning the purported Northwesterners dominance in the Southwest region. While affirming that some of the points you raised are facts which are visible in some localities in South West region, you failed to outlined the positive contributions of Northwesterners in the south west region. I am saying so because you equated numerical dominance to mean marginalization.
Your imbalance write up was unhelpful to the discussion as seen from comments. You painted the whole issue with an invisible brush of one region acting like a parasite to the other. This is evident with one of your comment which read “Freedom of circulation should not mean domination because domination leads to marginalisation”.Owing to the fact that your main post is talking about North west dominance ,by implication Southwesterners are marginalized by their North west counterparts. I was expecting you to further explain how numerical dominance of CDC laborers is a form of marginalization to us. I say ‘u’s because I am a bonafide son of the South west region, my self like many others have rejected the offer to work as a laborer in Delmonte Tiko. Some even referred to it as “Suffer work” .
Dr, permit me to disagree with you in a more subtle way concerning the nick name of Mutengene which you aligned to the Momo people to suit your write up while twisting the reality.
In a bid to showcase Northwest dominance , you said. “Mutengene is nicknamed “Cham” which in the Metta language of Momo Division means “home”, “village”, “town”, etc. The fact that the nickname is in Metta and not in Bakweri is indicative of something “
I was bemused to read the above because I expected you to have carried out some research in regards to the origin of the name “Cham”. The authenticity of facts is relevant when making analysis to correlates issues of this magnitude. It is therefore regrettable such is coming from an academician of your standard.
To be Clear:
The name “Cham” originated from a popular and jovial figure in Buea road Mutengene by name Mr Philip Kah cham who is of blessed memory. Cham happens to be his surname and his activities in the selling and distribution of medicine in neighbouring towns in Fako kept the name in the spotlight.
While some referred to him as Dr from Mutengene, others called him Dr Cham which was his Surname. The interchangeable usage of the Cham and Mutengene to describe him kept the nick name alive.
You of all people should have known that Streets and towns have been nicked name or formally named after people which by all measures had nothing to do with dominance. Those of you who think the above mistake is trivial needs to make a connection between the naming which he related to the Momo clan and the core of his write up which is that of dominance .
Sir, in the case of Ekona and Mamu you didn’t explain if those tribes appeared in those places by conquering the indigenes in a war, battle or they were attracted by one of the pull factors of migration just like the case of Tole, with Tole tea plantation acting as the pull factor.
I would have agreed with your notion that dominance leads to marginalization if the employment in those plantations were selective or discriminatory. Note that the indigenes have an upper hand to work in those plantations but many have choose not to, taken into consideration the harsh working conditions among others
In your own words you said. “I don’t know of anywhere in the North West where Southwesterners dominate Northwesters in numbers”
I wish to know if the non dominance is as a result of the unwelcoming attitudes of NW fellows or is it as a result of the principal push and pull factors of migration? We all know what attracted the influx of NW to the SW region with the plantations and other economic activities being top on the scale.
The Bororo community are visible in their numbers in certain part of the North west region as a result of their cattle rearing activities which has a direct relationship with the Grass fields. I don’t think it would be appropriate to conclude that the absence of Bororo settlements in Fako is due to the unwelcoming attitude of the Fako people.
A follower of yours said if domination is not related to marginalization, why are Anglophones’ complaining? My dear , the Anglophone problem is a constitutional problem. It is an issue of the elimination of clauses which was placed to guide an agreement. More to that the fact that there is an “Hausa quarter” in Kumba or “Quartier Bayangui” in Douala does mean the indigenes of those areas are marginalized by the aforementioned groups.
The most terrifying point in your write up was the citation of the notorious statement of “Come no go” which was made by a one-time Governor of the then SW province . Your context of citation can be diagnose as your best description that suits the North westerners. You acted like a believer and follower of the late Oben Peter Ashu. In your own words.”This was probably why the former Governor of the Southwest, the late Peter Oben Ashu referred to them as “come no go”.
The fact that you said refer to “them” (Northwesterners) meant that you are not one of “them” although by origin your are one of them.
You said North west people have to thank South westerners which is un disputable. On the other hand, who should thank the North westerners for their indefatigable and endless hard work which is visible in our communities? The relevance of human capital in the development of any setting is undoubtedly the most valuable input. I can assure you that the presence of non-indigenes in our respective regions has played a vital role in the development of those areas. If the non indigenes were to remove everything they own across our regions, then some Cities would become towns and some towns would be converted to villages while some villages would disappear. This is a two way flow, a flow which you failed to paint and made one group to look more of a parasite.
To my south West people:
We should rise above any psychological bondage and strive as proactive participants. We have all it takes to unfold ourselves from any form of oppression. We have the choice to approach the numerical dominance by building walls or bridges. But I will always go for bridges because of the mutual benefits.
If you are so bend in building walls as seen by some horrible commentators who responded on the Facebook wall of Abraham Batey, you can label your land during the process of selling as “Land for sale only to indigenes” people don’t eat land, either you cultivate or build on it.
Also advise your children to get involved in those plantations jobs which are dominated by North westerners. They should not reject those jobs under the pretext of “Suffer work”. You have no reason to complain about dominance when you are unwilling to get involve. While complaining about Northwest dominance we should remember that the creeks of Tiko to ideanua right up to Bakassi are still dominated by Nigerian fisher men. The heart beats of our main markets is rested on the chest of the Igbo and the Bamelikes. If you are good at business, compete instead of nagging.
One of the promoters of the write up of Tiku Mbah Azonga by name Abraham Johnson responded to me after i told him i am from Lebialem. Hear him. “Almost all from lebialem spend useful energy in Momo, Mezam or Dschang. They are graffiti people without derogation”. That is to tell you the divide goes beyond the South Vs North issue. Even within the south Westerners there is also a divide as seen in the respond above.
To My North West brothers and Sisters.
You have to understand that respect is a virtue which is relevant in any peaceful environment. You can’t bow and honor your chiefs or Fons while disrespecting those of other people. while affirming that some of those actions comes as a result of self defense, we should not forget the aftermath of such reactions. it is your duty to make Tiku Mbah Azonga and his flocks of argent provocateurs to understand that there are bad eggs in every community. This act of divide will only strengthen the indigenes of NW and SW. It is our collective responsibility to educate our people the act of respecting others irrespective of their origins.
To the struggle:
Keep in mind that 100 % unity is a near impossibility but we can have a substantial level of mutual respect.
I am sorry for the long write up.