By Fai Cassian Ndi
When I posted pictures of people (including kids of less the 5 years) working on the stretch of the ring road Ndu-Nkambe using hand tools on the social media yesterday, a friend asked me whether we have a department in my country that oversees road maintenance. I said, well all this is happening in a country where there are several agencies, including the Ministry of Public Works which is responsible for the construction and maintenance of roads. In fact the response I got almost angered me when my friend said that Cameroonians are routinely being put at risk everyday as a result of the failure of the state to provide adequate amenities for its citizens and that all the authorities involved in road construction and maintenance should buckle down and do something to remove this blot on Cameroon’s image.
He concluded by insinuating that those who have been signing letters and sending them to Yaounde on behalf of the people should even be arrested and detained by their consciences if found guilty in influence trafficking. In fact I was so annoyed that by the time of putting down this piece I completely forgot the names of several of our elite(s). This matter is important because our country cannot develop with rickety political gansterism. Notwithstanding, I know some of them who are good and are endowed with character and conscience. Yet overshadowed by the self-seeking rickety wayward spins. But this is not our interest for now.
However, before the people of Donga Mantung (Nkambe, Binshua, Binka, Tabenken, Mbot, Kungi) decided to work on this road using hand tools, traveling from Kumbo to any part of Donga Mantung Division was not just a nightmare but demands a week of serious fasting and prayer because you never know when you will get to your destination. However, anyone who would maladroitly sit on the fence to declare that the stretch of road from Kumbo to Donga Mantung is not a necessity or a priority should be considered as being in a state of sin.
Even though there is a statement in the Bible which states that people should not pass round for judges on others, I believe it is often quoted out of context because the Bible still tells us that people should be judged if their acts are injurious. I am aware that this critical judgment analysis is badly needed. It is imperative because the people of Donga Mantung are in tears again and the bells of anguish are being heard signaling that Donga Mantung Division may cease to exist in the map of this country. I am also aware that this bit will offset many people but it is a fact. Even so, who is even going to twist my arm for speaking the truth?
Is it not a right for the people of Donga Mantung to have a good access road and even enjoy more as a border Division? It pains and kills my imagination as well as the picture post-card I got from my father that they decided to unite with La Republique because of what was happening up the road. Approximately 54 years after reunification the situation of this road is more pathetic than before to the point that the population has to donate money to hire truck and caterpillars to work on this road. That in the 21st century people still work on national roads using hand tools. Oh Yes, life is not a choice. It is what you see that you adapt to.
When I look across the river and see the road network, I cry for my Division. I wish I could put down on paper the picture that comes to me from the restrained of anger. I need not dwell upon the authenticated horrors of the Nazi internment camps and death chambers for Jews. That is tragic but a kind of insane horror like our ring road. The essence of tragedy is not the doing of evil by evil men but the doing of evil by good men, out of weakness, indecision, sloth, inability to act in accordance with what they know to be right. The ring road, until now, presents the classic existential argument about the existence of God or a higher power: if he did and does exist, then the only natural choice is to become a disciple; but if he did not, and there is no afterlife, then life is meaningless outside the present moment for the people of Donga Mantung given that wise people have often said and proven that where the road passes, development follows. Hence, there is nothing to be done except to live every moment without a thought to the next but look only to God Almighty for Divine Intervention. The state of nature of the Ring Road almost made Donga Mantung an Island on land.
But then Today, thoughts and feelings are more and more separated from each other, and this separation leads either to an almost schizophrenic intellectualism or to a neurotic, irrational emotionalism. Only if emotions and reason are brought together like what happened yesterday (that more than 5.000 people came out to work) can man function in a way which makes life interesting and hence creates the possibility of a productive life. To put it briefly, the lesson is that emergence of Cameroon has started from Donga Mantung Division, the land of hard working people. Kudos to the Fon of Nkambe for the great mobilization, the SDO for Donga Mantung for igniting hope, the DO for Nkambe Central and Mayor of Nkambe for personally supervising, the Cameroon National Youth Council for communicating, the Kwifons of the various dynamic population of the various villages, business owners, the Fons of Binshua, Tabenken, Kungi, Mbot and Binka. Hopes are not lost, instead of waiting, lets forge ahead with our development in action not rethorics
When News Breaks Out, We Break In. (The 2014 Bloggies Finalist)