|Ezekiel Nji Chi: SDF Councilor for Ntamulung|
The SDF councilor for the Ntamulung neighbourhood, which is the heartbeat of the Bamenda city council area, is now threatening court action in relation to the rehabilitation of earth roads in his constituency. The fracas between councilor Ezekiel Nji Chi and another resident, Lucy Ndefru first made rounds after the Bamenda City Council decided to open up roads in Ntamulung which is closely linked to the central business district of the city of Bamenda.
This reporter gathered that after the earth roads were successfully opened up and some houses and property affected, Lucy Ndefru raised a protest that the SDF councilor, Ezekiel Nji Chi had collected huge sums of money as bribe to cause the deviation of the rehabilitated road from the property of one Pa Nanje to her plot of land. It is an infuriated Lucy Ndefru who raised an alarm with the administration of Bamenda II and Mezam division through a protest.
Contacted to comment on the widespread allegation of corruption which was fueling tension in the neighbourhood, the SDF councilor refused the allegations pointing out that as chairman of a nine man development committee, he was only charged with overseeing the road rehabilitation. He explained that it is the technical services of the Bamenda city council that demarcated the roads to be rehabilitated and the quarter development committee was only there to supervise the work. The councilor who is also chairman of the finance committee of the Bamenda II council revealed that before the roads were graded, there were land marks, adding that unless it was discovered that some people had their building permits and the city council did not want to compensate them in case of any destruction. Councilor Nji Chi challenged Lucy Ndefru and other detractors who claim that the chairman of the quarter development committee has collected bribe to bring the proves. Failure to bring the prove amidst the raging tension, he fumed; there will be no other alternative than to take the matter to court. He said when roads were being graded on the disputed area, he as the development committee chairman was not present to have influenced the bulldozer, noting that Lucy Ndefru even has no authority over the land because her mother and brother are still alive to manage the family land.
Nji Chi disclosed that following the dispute, the DO for Bamenda II, Itoe Mbongo Peter visited the said piece of land ad asked for a land certificate which was not produced .He said despite promises that the land certificate, said to be in the keeping of the Fon of Mankon would be produced, nothing has since happened .The councilor regretted that even though he lobbied for the army rescue to supply water to the population of the area amidst severe shortage ,Lucy Ndefru went out on a sabotage campaign that the councilor was fake. He concluded that the said Lucy Ndefru has refused to respect hierarchy or pay her development levy like any other inhabitant of the area. Nji brandished a list of those who have paid their development levy and the name of Lucy Ndefru was not there. Given the magnitude of the allegations and the increasing tension on the ground, Ezekiel Nji Chi, with the support of the Ntamulung quarter head, Fonjong Samson Anye and the entire development committee are now bracing up to go to court to seek justice. The opening of roads in the Ntamulung area has however eased traffic flow in the city centre especially the Sonac Street and Ngen junction areas which usually create significant traffic problems in the city of Bamenda. The road rehabilitation project in Bamenda is part of ongoing efforts to decongest the town and similar exercises have already been carried out in other parts of town with demolition of several houses. Nji said the worst was that when he lobbied for the Army Rescue Unit to supply water in the quarter, the same lady was shouting from the nearby house “fake councilor”. This, he said is part of the chain of smear talks to tarnish his image which he cannot that it lightly.
When News Breaks Out, We Break In. (The 2014 Bloggies Finalist)