The greatest casualty of the famous advocacy for a life Presidency for the sitting Head of state of Cameroon masterminded by former Chantier Naval (CNIC) Boss, Zacheus Forjindam was the Social Democratic Front SDF that lost eight of nineteen seats in Parliament to the CPDM in the North West Region. This technocrat from Santa Subdivision specialized in shipbuilding used the same tactic and knowhow to rekindle the lost power base of the CPDM in the North West Region. He personally bankrolled deposits for twenty parliamentary candidates to the tune of FCFA 10 million and an undisclosed amount for councilors. Nine parliamentary seats and eighteen councils were won over by CPDM in the 2007 twin elections.
It was no news that Zacheus Forjindam was so attached to the presidential family. How true was even a claim by the public rumour mill that he was a godfather of one of President Biya’s son is yet to be verified. And that he even went as far as bankrolling birthday parties for the number one man’s child. Some say it was a sign of gratitude to the person who personally woo him to come back and serve the country in that capacity. Forjindam sacrificed his very huge pay package and the good life led out of the country while working as a shipbuilding Engineer only to end up in the jaws of the prison. This whole show started with several orchestrated strike actions by workers of Chantier naval fueled by his second in command Antoine Bikoro to cry foul over nonpayment of salaries. The sudden twist of events just one year after working so hard to keep the regime in power comfortable took many wondering whether it is worth the trouble defending the undefendable. It started like a joke. Forjindam was invited for interrogations at the judicial police in an investigation of what had to do with embezzling huge amounts of FCFA at Chantier naval. Before long he was arrested in May 2008 and was awaiting trial at the new bell prison. At some point in time as the case was proceeding with evidence and counter evidence presented by lawyers on both sides, there were prospects that the case would be in favour of Zacheus Forjindam. Rather he was slammed a twelve year jail term for embezzling over FCFA 900 million. In an effort to prove beyond reasonable doubts that he was innocent in the court of appeal, it rather added three more years to the twelve summing up to fifteen. The paradox is that of the seven counts that earned him a twelve year jail term, five were not considered at the Littoral court of Appeal and Forjindam was acquitted and discharged of the five but sentenced on two, counts one having to doing with inappropriate supervision of his cashier one Antoine Njambe. On the same day, as if to add salt to injury the Wouri court was hearing a different matter filed by the authorities of the port charging Forjindam with embezzling FCFA 205 million and judgment was effected with a life jail sentence. All his property acquired before 2004 confisticated were refunded but those acquired after were retained by the state. His lawyers who claim Forjindam is innocent and is only a victim of circumstances have filed in another appeal at the Supreme Court.
Contrary to the make believe rhetoric by a few overzealous people who give false impressions, typical North Westerners and a cross section of Cameroonians are yet to forgive Zacheus Forjindam for advocating in 2006 that Paul Biya be made Life President of Cameroon. Thereafter, the constitution was revised giving the seating head of State a free way to vie for another mandate of which many were expecting the end of the second seven-year mandate to elapse with the present regime. True to Forjindam’s wish, there is no term limit in the Presidential mandate in Cameroon following the revised constitution. North Westerners received the news of Forjindam being slammed a life jail sentence as a no event and some are saying he deserves it. To some adherents of the opposition parties this lesson will serve as a deterrent to others who wrongly think that the CPDM should be taken as an umbrella to shed just anything in Cameroon. Kwa Donatus alias “Menchum” an SDF no nonsense militant from Fungum in Menchum Division holds that this rubbish by CPDM stooges must stop saying they should learn to differentiate the State from a political party. More often than not the CPDM stalwarts have taken Cameroonians for a ride but time has caught up with them and the State is taking its responsibility. They of the ruling party have pillaged and milked the state coffers dry and Cameroon is now on its knees.
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