By Eric Tataw – Tuesday May 7, 2019.
For the first time in three years since an armed conflict broke out in the two English-speaking regions of the North West and South West, Paul Biya, President of the Central African country of Cameroon has used the word “Forgive”
Paul Biya, 86, Cameroon’s President since 1982 posted a statement on his official Facebook Page, talking about forgiving and forgetting as the most important thing in Cameroon, urging Cameroonians to look at the future and forget the past.
“The important thing, today, is to forgive and forget, to tender together towards a common goal. We cannot, at the same time, look at the future and live in the past. Mutual forgiveness is the path that leads to sustainable peace.”, Paul Biya said in a Facebook post, Tuesday May 7, 2019.
On the comment section of his post, Paul Biya received tons of disapproval from the Cameroonian public, with many still holding the position that the President is a dictator, economy destroyer, murderer and Genocidal actor.
In one of the comments, a Facebook account by Airforceone Alaan said “Have you become a fan of social networks Mr President? Why are you talking about forgiveness? Do you blame yourself for something about Cameroonians? If this is the case then ask for an official forgiveness on National Television to the Cameroonian people”
Many have expressed surprise at the President’s post, saying that for over three years, he has instructed members of the Cameroon army to torch villages and kill thousands of innocent civilians in Cameroon’s English-speaking regions.
Others say they’re baffled that President Paul Biya is asking for forgiveness when there’re many innocent people still held in various detention facilities under deplorable conditions at his behest.
Many more people say they’re indeed surprised that given the fact that President Paul Biya has bragged on several occasions that he would neutralize Ambazonian fighters in the two English-speaking regions, his asking for forgiveness would have inspired many if he had called for dialogue with the separatists.
Unrest in Cameroon’s two English-speaking regions began in October 2016 as a disagreement in language but government mismanaged it, turning it into a demand by majority of Anglophones in the North West and South West for a separate state called Ambazonia.
Gun battles have ensued and the government has been accused of numerous Human Rights violation, including targeted killings and the burning down of entire villages according to credible reports from the US Ambassador to Cameroon, Peter Henry Barlerin, reputable Human Rights Lawyer Agbor Balla and Bishops of Mamfe and Kumbo and just recently, The Human Rights Watch.