By Shey Lontum in Ngarum, Ndu
When News Breaks Out, We Break In. (The 2014 Bloggies Finalist)
When this analyst was designated at the Social Democratic Front (SDF’s) National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting in February 2015 to be part of the historic document that was later entitled SDF at 25: The Untold Story, I felt accomplished and fulfilled. I felt a sense of pride and recognition because the three of us chosen to wok on the book were all militants of what I am going to term Category One or the Green Guys! . We had Mbah Ndam Joseph, Francis Wache and Martin Fon Yembe. To better understand why there are some laxities, compromise and cacophony once in a while here and there in the SDF, one has to be frank in x-raying the militancy and leadership in various categories. V for Vendetta says that People should not be afraid of their government(leaders) rather governments( leaders) should be afraid of their people. In Cameroon and in all the political parties in Cameroon, the people dread their leaders rather than the reverse.
If some of us have decided to be outspoken, it is because Plato says “The man in you dies when in the midst of injustice, you keep silent”!! In coming up once in a while to speak on burning issues in this country, and especially when it touches on the SDF affairs, it becomes very delicate because there are many with doubtful political backgrounds who will prefer that nothing is discussed that will raise eyebrows. Of course, this constitutes another category of militants in the SDF that has to be e-rayed. By categorizing the militancy and leadership of the SDF in public space, my intention is to make Cameroonians and the international community better comprehend the woes of this great organization and to chart a better option for its up-coming challenges.
Many are unaware of the fact that the SDF has more militants today, than it did in 1992 even if they are silent and passive ones. It needs just a little positive move by its leadership to galvanize this sleeping lot to rise like a hungry Rhinoceros and devour the Machiavellian Prince and his “Mimbo Regime” at Etoudi! Let us examine this anecdote! In one of his very popular plays entitled Our Husband has Gone mad Again, the Yoruba Playwright Ola Rotimi paints the picture of an ex-soldier who returns from the wars in Congo against some long-nosed Belgians and dares to try his hands at politics. Because he inherits a lot of wealth from his grand father’s cocoa farm, he dreams that he can succeed in entering politics, winning elections and “eat of the National Chin Chin”! He gets married to the daughter of the President of Market Women , Sikira, to have the women on his side. Meanwhile he had gotten married to an Americanized nurse from Kenya , Eliza and inherited his late brother’s wife, mama Rashida. Back in his party, he becomes National Chairman and intends using military techniques of “Surprise and Attack” to outsmart his opponents. He is finally exposed when , during a press conference, his marital lapses are exposed live and the tool he wanted to use, Sikira, one of his wives, is projected by the women as national Chairman of the party. The ex-soldier-cum politician, Lejoka Brown coils his tail and goes back to his cocoa farm.
There are adventurers in all domains in life…business, preaching, farming, teaching, medicine, politics etc. There are opportunists in all societies, communities, organizations and especially political set ups. Cameroon is not an island in space, talk less of the Social Democratic Front. To avoid any embarrassments, I will use pseudo names in my analysis. Those who have ears will hear! Those who have minds will reason and those who have eyes will see clearly and the beneficiary will be the people…the SDF and Cameroon! On a Lighter Note: The Green, The White and the Red! The Green Guys! Reading through the book, SDF at 25: The Untold Story, many will agree with this analyst that the National Chairman of the SDF is indeed desirous to have the truth and all the truth told about the SDF! He needs real people around him to tell him the truth about the SDF yesterday, today and tomorrow. I remember Ni John Fru Ndi stating to a group of his “Boys” that he will love to see a dynamic, open and vibrant SDF when he will be old, tired and close to his maker! Those to make this happen are there. They are the founders, the hunting dogs and foundation militants of the 90s. They have one thing in common…sacrifice, determination and courage! They are mainly political activists. They constitute a category of militants we will refer to as the Green Group. They can enter into mud and dust and still come out with the green on them. They depend on the people and will not mind to give their lives up and even their positions to see the flag of the SDF fly high! In fact, they are political activists, not political politicians. They can be very agitative, ready to volunteer and sacrifice their energy, talents and time to see the party’s flag fly high. Today, less than 10% of these are either in Parliament or councils. Those who have been opportune to get there have been booted out by the Big White Guys with huge wallets, big books and big mouths! As a result, they get discouraged, but they remain steadfast and committed. They knish their teeth in silence, but keep waiting for the opportunity to be given the chance to serve. They are dreaded and hated by the Biya administrators and, paradoxically, some top officials who belong in the next category. They hate the idea of joining the Beer Regime!! The White Guys! A political party is like a grain of corn, which, when planted on fertile ground, will grow and bear more and more grains. All the grains will not be of the same sizes or colours, but they are all needed to fill up a bag to be sold. The one place where no one applies or bribes to be a member in Cameroon is a political party, and so, it is open for all. Some come in and become even more active, useful and responsible than even the founders and hunting dogs. They have one thing in common, caution, interest and ambition. They are mainly political zealots, very smart, shrewd, intelligent, rich and lucky…or, to put it simply, political opportunists. They constitute what we will call the White Group! They are the office types. They are very conscious of their reputation, still they are in white. They will use logic, not force or the people to get what they want. They are Machiavelli in nature…that is, they will use all methods and means to get to power, even at the detriment of the people. They are prone to abandoning or compromising in reality some important political principles that were previously held, in the process of trying to increase their political power and influence. They have even caused the “amendment” of the party’s fundamental constitution to suit their whimsies and caprices! Remember the 2006 brouhaha?!! This category is full of guys who think that by winning a few seats in parliament and councils means “crossing the Rubicon”! They have been putting pressure for the SDF to join the “Mimbo Regime”! They always clash with the Green Guys on the ground, on the field and in meetings! They are responsible for the compromise in the party and can even hold the Chairman hostage with very strange ideologies. Most of them stepped into the party after they went on retirement, or fell out with the regime because of salary or increment lapses. They talk big always and frighten the less educated, less connected with their former positions in some university, international organization, institution etc.
They love protocol and decorum, scaring the poor Green Guys! They depend so much on political sycophants, ie, those who love flattering them to get their monies. These sycophants understand them and so blackmail their opponents . Blackmail is their major tool then. They will not mind trimming the size of the party if only it serves their political selfish purpose! The Red Guys! There is a category of Cameroonians who are responsible for the mess in which Cameroon finds itself. They are ready to mortgage their freedom for “Mimbo”! They are ready to sell their consciences ( if they still have any) to the highest bidder. They are bootlickers and can even eat their own vomits. They are the sycophants who go about from one political figure to the other painting the others black. They are responsible for the many falsehood, blackmail and lies against the Green Guys. They are the agents the White Guys use to attain their diabolic intents! They behave in very obsequious manner, that is always flattering the other with sweet words, sweet names and all that goes with sycophancies! Remember what these have turned themselves into…sheep! If militants are sheep, money is the shepherd…without money. We’ll all be rich and powerful…and the CPDM will be dreaming in hell!
Watch out for detailed analyses and way forward
When News Breaks Out, We Break In. (The 2014 Bloggies Finalist)