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Over 5,200 Houses Razed In NW, Catholic Priest Tells UN Security Council

New York (National Times)-The Director of Caritas International of the Bamenda Archdioceses, Rev Fr. Paul Fru Njukikang, says more than 2000 houses have been burnt in Momo Division alone, 1500 in Bui, 1300 in Menchum and 400 in Boyo including some hospitals and health facilities.

The Man of God presented the worrying figures on Monday, May 13 to diplomats at the UN Security Council Arria-formula session dedicated to the conflict in Anglophone Cameroon.

According to Fr Njukikang, many buildings have been burnt especially by the military and many are still being burnt creating enormous havoc to the over 4 million people who have been affected by the conflict imposed on them by politicians.

“I am not a politician, I am a Priest, I am a Pastor…I am here because of the lives of our four million people who are affected by this crisis,” the Man of God said.

He testified that the conflict started as a purely peaceful uprising but was transformed into a war due to the highhandedness of the Cameroon military.

“The escalation began in September 2017 when Cameroon forces used live ammunitions on peaceful protester,” the Priest noted adding that the “Cameroon forces…act as instruments of terror to the local population.”

The Priest also alleged that the military has attacked many health facilities as well as shot dead three nurses who were dressed in their official uniforms.

He, however, noted that Ambazonia fighters have also caused some human rights abuses as well as made the entire Anglophone Cameroon ungovernable.

“The pro-independence fighters have made the Regions ungovernable.”

While arguing that a military solution has never solved a conflict anywhere in the world, Fr. Fru called on the UN and the international community to force the protagonists to sit on the negotiating table as well as force the Government of Cameroon to demilitarised the conflict Regions.

As he ended his lamentations, he said, “Our people in these two Regions are suffering a lot….we are in pains…one cannot talk freely….I speak out the truth even if I would be killed. It would be better for me to die in dignity than to live in fear and shame.”

Rev Fr Paul Fru Njokikang was one of the three representatives of humanitarian agencies called to testify before the UN Security Council Arria-formular on Cameroon.

The other two include Esther Njomo, Executive Director of Reach Out Cameroon and Jan Egeland, Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council.

 

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