Bernard Okalia Bilai, colonial governor of Southwest Region, has pleaded with journalists to be partial in reporting the return of detained Anglophones from Yaounde to Buea. According to him, the journalists should concentrate on angles that will drive government’s policy of 100% back to school in the Southwest Region.
Bernard Okalia Bilai was speaking through his communication aides shortly after receiving over 12 Anglophones hitherto detained at the Kondengui prison in Yaounde. Thousands of CFA Francs were handed to each journalist to alter their reporting.
“We are giving you this token (money) to appreciate your collaboration with the administration of the Southwest region, in driving government’s action. We call on you to tilt your reporting so government’s goal of having all kids go back to school come Monday, could be attained,” the governor’s aide indicated
Receiving the money, some of the journalists murmured in the background that few thousands of CFA handed them by the governor would never alter their write-ups.
“All what was said in there was total trash. The money I received is merely my taxes I have been paying to government. I shall report just what I have witnessed here and nothing else,” a journalist affirmed
Release of Anglophone Detainees
At around 9:00am this Friday September 1, 2017, some twelve Anglophones previously incarcerated at different prisons in Yaounde, stepped down a 35 VIP sitters bus in Buea, freed, after 285 days in detention. The Anglophones led by Barrister Felix Nkongho Arrey, and Doctor Fontem Neba, seemingly looked so astute, as they stepped down the bus to meet the crowd. Among the released, was Atia Tilarius (a journalist with the SUN newspaper), and Zama Godden, SDF District Chairperson for Limbe.
Free at last! The murmured crowd exclaimed, hailing at the Anglophones as they move closer to the crowed.
Narrating their ordeals, the detainees indicated, they have been treated in some of the worst conditions yet, but affirm, they are high spirited and hoping to integrate swiftly with the population.
“I was put on solitary confinement for close to a month, and then interrogated on several occasions. I have had my low and high moments while in jail, but I can confirm to you here that I am determine to see Anglophones receive equal attention as Francophones in this country,” one of the detainees, a journalist, indicated.
Among the joyous crowd that turned out amass to welcome their leaders and brothers, pockets of hypocrites including Ekema Patrick Essunge (alleged to have masterminded many of the arrests), Kouam Wokam Paul, Bernard Okalia Bilai, and others, could be seen chairing at the freed Anglophones as they approach the crowd.
The population marched with the Anglophone leaders from the governor’s office through the different streets of Buea, and back to their respective homes.
By Lucas Muma,
Managing Editor, BaretaNews