Military parade, party march past and massive youth display made the event in the South West capital.
A two-week field mobilization in Fako Division leading to the event by Honourable Emilia Monjowa Lifaka, Vice Speaker of the National Assembly, paid off by pulling crowds of women, traditional rulers, elite and students of higher institutions to this year’s National Day celebrations. This was against the backdrop of calls for boycott of the event by separatist’s operatives.
South West Governor, Bernard Okalia Bilai’s arrival at the Buea ceremonial ground in Clerks Quarters at 9.55am opened festivities with a salute of the national emblem followed by the national anthem and the decoration of 20 meritorious medalists. In two phases the military and civilian march-pasts thrilled the on-lookers reaping applauds in approval.
The Gendarmerie, the Army, National Security, Penitentiary Administration, Customs, Forestry, Ex-service men, and motorized units of the forces electrified the event. Then came the civilian parade with the Red Cross, Scout Movements, a primary school, professional and Higher Education Institutions in Buea. Marching to the rhythm of the Military band and the Penitentiary Administration School band, the various parades showed heightened vitality and a sense of unity.
Political parties including the CPDM, the UPC and the MRC staged their show of vigour by marching to the rhythm of the nation. The MRC party carried placards calling for an end to the killings of both military and civilians in the Region.
The UPC, in recognition of their freshly appointed Buea-based Senator, Leke Philip, marched in exposed joy. The CPDM, led by the Fako III Section President, Namanga Mafany, and followed by Honourable Lifaka, used their fabulous numbers to give the event a special glamour.
After the two-hour event, Bernard Okalia Bilai praised all, especially the youth for braving the odds and defying the calls for boycott to give the event the splendour lived.