Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Cameroon's English Speakers Feel Overwhelmed By Francophones says Garga H. Adji

The former minister and politician supports the idea of ​​federalism, a hypothesis hitherto dismissed by the government.

His interview on the show La Grande interview on Canal on October 24, 2017 is published in the Integration columns of this November 6th.

Question: After listening to the English speakers you met. How can you summarize the essence of their claims?
Garga H. Adji: In fact, there are claims and there are challenges. When they talk about marginalization, for example. This is an observation. And I noticed it too. There is the fact that they felt invaded by francophones. I give an example. We had just sent justice auditors. Of eight sent, seven were French-speaking. All prefects in the northwest were all French except one or two. As they have become sensitive to the extreme, they observe this with a magnifying glass. On the educational level, they told me that they are afraid of being phagocyted by the French system. And that they have never had an English Minister of Education. If at least there was an English-speaking Secretary of State for Education (Higher or Secondary Education), some of the aspects of English education could have been taken into account. And the two education systems could have been complementary.
English Speakers Feel Overwhelmed By Francophones says Garga H. Adji
Question: A mission led by the Prime Minister went down again in the South West and Northwest and in some localities it did not go well. Does this distrust surprise you?
Garga H. Adji: It does not surprise me at all. I told you that there are people with fixed positions who do not want to feel x or y in this government. And as long as these x or y are in government, they will not come. Many have told me that there is someone to whom they have no confidence.

Question: For you, who are those who are discredited in the eyes of the people?
Garga H. Adji:
I can not tell you ... The Speaker is aware. You can not have a special commissioner and the DGRE (the Directorate General of External Intelligence) and not be aware. Let's wait.

Question: Exactly, some people think that the crisis in the English-speaking regions is also the bankruptcy of the intelligence services. Apparently we did not see things coming ...
Garga H. Adji: No, it's not the bankruptcy of the intelligence services. The persistence of the Anglophone crisis is due to the nature of the President of the Republic. The president does not like working under pressure. And as long as there is pressure, it will not do anything. He is like a restive horse. The day we stay one or two months in peace, I swear, the crisis will be resolved.

Question: Is it possible?
Garga H. Adji: When there is a conflict, do not let everyone get out of their way. Because at that moment, there will be no dialogue. The word dialogue is even today overused. When you say that the intelligence services have failed, I say no. The failure comes from the application of the constitution of 1996. Because what they asked me is the autonomy of the regions. And these regions are in the constitution. If the officials of Yaoundé had been good enough to do their job, they would have proposed to the President of the Republic what the regions can become. Because we must determine their number, their territory, the powers and resources that will be devolved to them.

Question: What do you think of the idea of ​​creating a national conciliation committee along the lines of what was done in 1990 to solve the problem?
Garga H. Adji: As soon as you leave with prerequisites, the problem is distorted. We must not take a model that we will impose on a meeting. It is the meeting itself that has to define its ways of working and circumscribe the subjects on which it will work. At that moment, the parties will come to an agreement.

Question: Is the ruling elite right to say that there is no debate on the form of the state?
Garga H. Adji: When we say form of the state, it does not necessarily mean a federal state. It may be a national state with regions.

Question: Can we debate anyway?
Garga H. Adji: As long as you do not do it, the English problem will not be solved. They want autonomous regions. And then, it's even good. Cameroonians must be responsible for managing their affairs. That there is a fair distribution of resources and emulation between the regions. People must be free to talk, we see where they are right and we take them into account.

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