Yaoundé(National Times)-The self-proclaimed leader of the Ambazonia Movement, Sisiku Julius Ayuk Tabe, has challenged the language used by the Yaoundé Military Court to prosecute him and his colleagues and averred they do not understand the language.
Even though they were not explicitly given the opportunity to talk, Sisiku who was dressed in the traditional Bangwa Nchen dress used by royalties with a blue and white collar signifying the flag of Ambazonia, however succeeded in protesting against the use of French Language which to him is a “foreign” language and alien to his ears.
This prompted the Military Judge, Colonel Mem Michel to dismiss the interpreter whose services were described both by Lawyers of the defence and the accused as very poor.
However, the Lawyers also pressed for the reconstitution of the team of Magistrates at the court opting for the appointment of Anglophone Magistrates who would be able to better communicate with the accused and the defence team.
The case was then adjourned to Wednesday, February 20, 2019. This session was essentially devoted to the question of nationality after the Ambazonia leaders rejected the Cameroonian nationality and argued they are citizens of “Former British Southern Cameroons.”
Speaking after the court session to reporters, the Lead Counsel for the Defence, Barrister Fru John said they are out to say the law even though the Government is playing delaying tactics. “We are saying the law and nothing else but the law,” Fru John said. He also stated that despite the trickeries of the Government they (defence team) have their strategy.
He, however, refused to disclose to the press these strategies.
After being arrested on January 5 in Nigeria and transferred to Cameroon, the case pitting the 10 Ambazonia leaders versus the State of Cameroon is yet to fully touch on the underlying charges including terrorism, rebellion against the State, secession, non-possession of identity cards among others.