The Bishop of Portsmouth in the United kingdom (Philip Egan) in a recent letter to Christians of his diocese calls on faithfuls of his diocese to pray for the English speaking part of Cameroon,where the ongoing crackdown against Anglophones and the more recent ethnic cleansing campaign in Manyu is targeting a whole group of people, who are also being denied of their right to participate in any political process in the country.
In the letter published on e-News bilutin of the diocese of which alafnet.com optained a copy , Bishop Philip Egan says he has written to all members of parliament in the thirty four( 34) constituencies of his diocese to as a matter of urgency raise the current situation of Southern Cameroons to the British government so that pressure might be brought to bear to help resolve the tensions and difficulties being faced in the two English speaking regions.(See article in e-News issue 162 ,Portsmouth diocese) .
The 62 years old Roman Catholic bishop informed fellow Christians that the
Member of Parliament for Meon Valley, George Hollingbery, who is also Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Prime Minister Theresa May, has kindly followed up his concerns with the Minister of State responsible for Africa.
The Prelate further notes that, “the Minister of State has responded with assurances that the British Government is closely following the situation in North West and South West regions of Cameroon. The British High Commissioner in Yaoundé has raised concerns over the handling of the protests in the Anglophone region with both the Prime Minister and Minister of External Relations, asking the Cameroonian Government to exercise restraint, pursue dialogue and take action to reduce tensions.
I am intending to visit Archbishop Cornelius for a few days in early February and I will take with me the prayers and best wishes of our Diocese. Please continue to remember Cameroon and our sister diocese of Bamenda in your prayers. Let us ask the Lord for a speedy resolution of the current troubles. Please pray too for our own government and for all our Members of Parliament who represent us and labour to serve us.”
Nearly all the other members of parliament ,we are told have responded to Mgr. Egan who is the eighth Bishop of Portsmouth and have done so favourably .A typical response alafnet.com understands reads;
Dear Bishop Egan
Thank you for your letter about the situation in Cameroon. I am indeed aware of the worrying situation in that country: in particular the Biya regime’s violent repression of protest against the compulsory use of French in courts and education, and of political opposition in general in the run-up to next year’s scheduled presidential election.
I have written to the Foreign Secretary pressing the points you raise, and asking him what the government is doing to help safeguard human rights, including the right to education, in Cameroon. I will send you a copy of his reply as soon as I receive it.”
It should be noted that the situation in the English speaking regions has detelorated severely .The Cameroonian army recently launched yet another heavy-handed crackdown against Southern Cameroonians in biggest village in Eyumojock viz;Kembong ,using an armed attack on a military posts as the pretext displacing over 7000 villagers who have fled to neighbouring Nigeria.
The Bishop of the Diocese of Mamfe His Lordship Bishop Andrew Nkea who visited Kembong last week ,talks of just 30 villagers mostly children and the old currently residing in the parish out of the 7000 in the village. In a diocesan press release issued yesterday Friday the 22nd 2017 to all priests, Christians and people of goodwill in Manyu, Bishop Andrew Nkea stands with all who were victims of the attack on Kembong village and entrust all who suffer to the prayers of the Blessed John Paul II as we approach Christmas . Another Roman Catholic Bishop has been quoted as saying that what is going on in Southern Cameroons is a massive, state-sponsored genocide. With the UN relief reporting about 7500 registered Southern Cameroonian refugees across Nigeria.
In an interview the man of God granted the BBC, Bishop Nkea of the mamfe diocese recounted some of the atrocities witnessed in the largest village of Manyu divsion -kembong in the week preceding Christmas and appealed to all to make sure they dedicate 30 minutes each day to pray for peace.He opined that it was extremely difficult at this stage to speak of a lasting solution to the crisis that has rocked the Anglophone regions. The Bishop of Mamfe also did confirm to the BBC that some 20 houses were completely destroyed by Cameroon military forces in Kembong.
Over that past one year, Cameroon government troops, apart from raping, have been committing killings, making arbitrary arrests, and carrying out mass arson attacks to destroy houses in predominantly-Anglophone villages in the former West Cameroon
By Edmond Tambe