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Cameroonian Anglophone Separatist Laments Atrocities By His Fighters

One of Cameroon’s separatist leaders has for the first time openly admitted that his fighters have been committing atrocities against the Anglophone populations.

In a video posted on social media on Tuesday, Lucas Ayaba Cho who is based in Norway castigated his fighters for having turned their “war for freedom into a war of shame”.

The separatist leader, who is now a Norwegian citizen, said he was ashamed seeing one of his fighters dying “because of thuggery, stealing”.

“I feel ashamed that brave men and women who’ve risen up to challenge Cameroon have become petit criminals trying to get food, going around harassing people, begging for food,” Cho lamented in the widely circulated video.

“I do not only feel ashamed, I feel angry. Anger towards such persons more than I even have anger towards La Republique. It is a disgrace,” he added.

In what came as a moment of truth, Cho in the video decried that separatist fighters have turned themselves into petit criminals.

“Separatists who have been fighting for four years now have turned themselves into petit criminals. Instead of being seen as heroes within our communities, instead of being seen as people who protect our civilians, they are being seen as tormentors,” Cho declared from his safe haven in Norway.

“Not tormenting to get things done, tormenting to eat, to drink. How cheap some of you have become,”

The separatist leader derided the intellect of most of the fighters whom according to him, “go as far as tormenting families that are burying their dead”.

“You people haven’t got brains or what? The other day, I said I have imposed a foreign direct tax on all foreign businesses. You people are going around tormenting mothers in the villages, even where they are burying their dead. What a sacrilege!

“What a sacrilege to the customs and tradition that we hold dear. What has become of some of you? What has really become of some of you? Who are you? What are you fighting for? Stop giving us sleepless nights every day. Every day you go around picking up people, transporting them, collecting money. Do you remember Charles Taylor? He was a warlord. He became president. Do you know where he is? In jail somewhere. Do you know Prince Johnson?

“Let me tell you something, everyone, even patriots, nationalists who spend their time tormenting the population, those who encourage, propagate torture, systematic brutality, thuggery against our own civilian population, it is a matter of time.

“If your body does not lie on the streets, wasted, to be eaten by vultures, the Ambazonia justice will look after you. No one will remember your bravery. They will only remember the torment that you instilled in the body politics of the Ambazonia society.

“You cannot turn a people’s war for freedom into a war of shame where every day I am being questioned by journalists about A, B, or C because of criminals and irresponsibility of commanders who work within these places. How is it possible that you have a soldier (referring here to an armed separatist fighter) within your camp that keeps giving your camp a bad name?” Cho further lamented.

Various international human rights organisations have blamed separatists for kidnappings, torture, maiming and killing of the civilian populations.

They also fault the separatists for forcing children to stay away from school, burning schools and killing teachers.

The same human rights organisations have also castigated the ruling CPDM government in Yaounde of atrocities against the Anglophone populations.

Cardinal Christian Tumi, the respected cleric recently said that the separatists have destroyed the economy of the English-speaking regions by attacking and maiming plantation workers who go to work to earn a living.

Cardinal Tumi said because of these atrocities by separatist fighters, a large majority of the English-speaking populations in the Northwest and Southwest Regions are against the separatists.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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