The National Commission for the Promotion of Bilingualism and Multiculturalism led by former Prime Minister Peter Musonge has just completed its meet and-hear-the people’s visits to the North West and South West regions of Cameroon where a socio-political mishap is fast degenerating into something else.
While we appreciate government’s initiative, and the Musonge team for this fact-finding crusade and the patience to hear compatriots speak their minds, we face the challenge of acting fast to stall a devastating conflict.
For, it has resulted in the displacement of compatriots, and elimination of life, and destruction of property. The Musonge Commission has played its role by going out to be briefed on ways and means of handling a painful wound that is not healing. But what next?
Regrettably, the weakness of keeping for tomorrow what ought to be urgently tackled today is a canker worm that seems to have eaten deep into the fabric of our society. But the ugly trend can be redressed. Why not? Inertia can give way to prompt action.
The Cameroon Head of State, Paul Biya kick-started some redress measures when he reacted by creating a Common Law department in ENAM, recruitment of bilingual technical secondary school teachers, creation of a commission for the promotion of bilingualism and multiculturalism, and the Ministry of Decentralisation, besides other changes in ministerial appointments.
In the face of these redress measures, we face the task of giving them greater meaning by continuing in other areas that can weather a storm that is fast making life not worth living in peace-loving country like Cameroon.
With thousands of our compatriots reportedly internally displaced, many more seeking refuge in neighbouring countries, innocent lives lost, and property being destroyed on a daily basis, what good can we claim to be doing to ourselves and future generations? Must we keep talking without acting to stall a stressful nightmare?
What patriotism and political maturity would we boast of if we lose the pride earned for ourselves and Africa in 1961, through reunification after almost half a century of a colonial divide? What unpardonable political sins have we committed against each other that, stop us from sitting to together to talk out our differences, and forge ahead in love and peace?
In the face of the ongoing violence and destruction of life and property, we all need to reflect on the damage being done to ourselves and the image of this peace-loving country, and give greater meaning to the ingredients of living together in love and peace. We need to relinquish selfish tendencies and, be selflessly committed to the demands of living together in love and peace in spite of diversities.
We should note that those who envy our unity in diversity, natural resources and intellectual prowess do not care how much tarnishing we effect on Cameroon’s image through unpatriotic schemes. Yet, these weaknesses betray not only our political maturity, but also retard our economic development and international cooperation.
In this light, we need prompt action to prevent the worst that can happen to this country as a result of the ongoing socio-political crisis. We must face squarely the task of seeing that the ongoing socio-political mishap is stalled otherwise our beloved country could become another trouble spot on the continent of Africa, and viable market for sale of weapons.
This should not and will not happen if we work together to crush what robs us of the pride we have always enjoyed as an icon of peace in Africa.