by Fonban Emmanuel
The Minister of Territorial Administration of Cameroon in the person of Paul Atanga Nji on Wednesday, 19 August 2020 convened a meeting with the internally displaced traditional rulers from the English-speaking regions currently at war for some years.
The meeting was aimed at listening to the concerns of the traditional and making efforts on helping them return to their palaces where they hold powers as traditional rulers. The two delegations of the traditional rulers were accompanied by the elites and including members of government and members of parliament from their respective regions.
Firstly, it was the North West Delegation which was made up of traditional rulers, members of the government as well as the members of the parliament from the North West regions. Present in this delegation was Minister Rose Mbah Acha and others who came to become part of the solution.
The in-camera conversation between Minister Atanga Nji and the North West delegation with an agenda to help internally displaced Fons seemed promising as we heard from Fon Chafa Isaac of Bangolan.
“It shows the traditional rulers especially those living out of their fondoms and particularly those in Yaounde have not been abandoned to themselves. That the government is preoccupied with their situation. The main objective of this meeting was to look at ways by which the Fons can be accompanied by their elites to go back to their fondoms. Whatever we are saying, no Fon is happy living out of his palace. We have fons who have several wives and children and the Fon is here and part of his family is in the palace. It is not good. Activities of every Fondom, whether political or sociocultural revolve around the palaces. So, the absence of the Fon in the palace creates a vacuum. And it is a dangerous vacuum” said Fon Chafa Isaac XI of Bangolan after the meeting.
However, the South West Delegation saw the presence of Minister Nalova Lyonga as well as Minister Victor Mengot who all made their presence to participate in the contributions of their internally displaced chiefs. This was in the second delegation. It is yet to be seen if the chiefs will return to their palaces but the chiefs told the press the meeting with the minister was fruitful.
“It is a very good move to see that after so many years there is hope in the horizon, to see that we can go to our chiefdoms and continue to do what we are supposed to be doing. I don’t think personally I have a problem with the Amba boys. If anything is going to be the Amba boys we won’t have a problem trusting the authorities to come back” said HRH Peter Esambe Ngoh of Malende in Kumba III subdivision
On his Minister Atanga Nji assured the chiefs that the their concerns will be taken down and forwarded to the powers that be so that they could return before the regional elections are announced.
“This was a very important meeting bringing together, the Fons of the North West and South West regions including all the parliamentarians and members of government. We are concerned that the Fons are here and there are things we need to do for them to go back. The parliamentarians and the ministers have accepted to contribute financially to assist and accompany some of these fons. They are auxiliary of the administration and moreover we don’t know when the electorate of the regional elections shall be convened but the Fons have expressed the desire to go back so that they can fully participate in the regional elections” said Minister Paul Atanga Nji.
According to him, the government is ready to support them to return so that after the regional elections, they could be effective in following the reboot of the house of chiefs.