Protest Bamenda
Street demonstrations characterized different parts of the North West Region Friday 22 September 22, 2017.

Tree Branches and peace plants carrying youths stormed the streets of Bamenda before 9am chanting songs depicting captivity and need for freedom.

While combat ready riot police could be seen around the city looking on, the demonstrations where void of violence. Understanding previous actions by security forces during similar circumstances, tongues have been wagging over the silence of the security early Friday morning. According to some opinion, the reaction of the forces was due to the over bearing population. Others say they received instructions from higher quarters not to use force on the protesters. Though none of the positions cannot be confirmed by this reporter, the fact that teargas and shooting emerged later in the day with many hospitalized and even dead.


In Bamenda protesters stormed the street from Foncha junction for the Nkwen Fon’s palace. At the beginning, protesters could be seen providing the right of way to those who were with automobiles. The increasing crowd moved straight to the Nkwen Fons Palace where they were received by the Paramount Fon of Nkwen HRM Fon SF Azehfor III.

While return to the central city from the palace, Some protesters who spoke to this reporter at mile four Nkwen say “we are passing a message to the ongoing UN 72nd General Assembly to be addressed by Cameroon President Paul Biya this same day about the ongoing Anglophone crisis.” The crisis which has been characterized by school and courts boycott, arrest and shootings, Ghosts towns, burning of public and private property and of late; explosions.


A protester a bike could be heard calling those watching by the road side as traitors. According to this protester, the crisis requires an urgent solution and everyone should be involved.

The thousands marched past different groups of security forces till city chemist roundabout where a larger number of security forces waited.

Sporadic gun shots and cases of teargas were later reported with images circulating on social media with persons being rushed to hospital and others said to be dead. Reports on the ground in Santa subdivision apart from the population forcing the DO to join the protest march, two persons are said to have died just like in old town Bamenda where a civilian is confirmed to have died.

“We in the North West have always been leading in this struggle but today the South West has taken the lead. We cannot let them down. If they (security forces) like they should kill us but the world will know that we are suffering under the Biya Government.” A protester tells this reporter.

In Momo and Some parts of Divisions the dreaded Takumbeng (a group of old women half naked) formerly an exclusive preserve of the Social Democratic Front SDF is reported to have joined the march without the National Chairman of the party for whose protection the Takumbeng of the 90s was created. 

The demonstrations come ten months into an ongoing crisis that has been baptised the Anglophone crisis. 

While government officials say government has taken measures to provide solutions to the preoccupations of lawyers and teachers that laid the foundation for the ongoing crisis, many still think otherwise. 

Voices demanding a review on the form of state in Cameroon have become more louder than ever. While some think Federalism is the best form of government that can address the current crisis, others are of the opinion that outright  separation from formerly La Republic du Cameroon giving independence to Southern Cameroon is the solution as it forever solves the  over bearing marginalisation of Anglophones in Country. 

The popularity of this day's demonstrations puts to question the effectiveness of government measures to solve the problems raise. 

The latest demonstration followed an explosion that seriously injured three police officers in Bamenda Friday September 21, 2017.

Following the explosion which is the fourth in two weeks, the Governor of the North West Regioh Lele L’Afrique Tchoffo Deben Adolph who described the act as terrorist in nature singed an order prohibiting inter-divisional movements in the region for 24hrs (midnight Thursday 21 to Friday 22 midnight).

On his part the Divisional Head for Mezam SDO Songa Pierre Rene ordered a night curfew from 10 pm to 5 am with no movements of people and cars as well as no opening of public places or gatherings.
Derick BAKAH

Derick BAKAH

Bakah Derick is a Broadcast Presenter and Multimedia specialist with focus on sharing with the rest of the world the daily happenings in the Northwest Region of Cameroon. You can contact us on +237 675460750 or debakah2004@gmail.com.

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