By Bakah Derick
PWD social football club of Bamenda has defied all obstacles on their way to emerge winners of the 2021 edition of the Cameroon Cup. The Abakwa Boys beat Astre of Douala 1-0 at the Ahmadou Ahidjo stadium in Yaounde on Sunday 13 March 2022 thanks to a Chem Herbert Mbumwe goal at the 15th miniute.
Training at the Big Mankon field which is everything but for a football field, PWD Bamenda was meticulous at the top rated Mfandena stadium in Yaounde. Without rain their training field is dusty and with rain it is muddy enough to prevent the practice of the beautiful game.
The St Paul Comprehensive High School field in Nkwen where they played some friendly matches is no different. This was not enough to prevent them from putting up an uncommon spectacle against Astre. They did same during the 2019 season and emerged Champions of Cameroon.
The Abakwa Boys have achieved their glory in the heart of a raging armed conflict. Their one time coach was kidnapped once, ghost towns interrupt training sessions with gun battles being a regular occurrence.
In total defiance of all these, the resilience of coaches, players and even supporters paid off this Sunday in Yaounde.
Aware that they may also have to defy the laws of the promoters of the armed conflict by playing in Yaounde on Sunday with Monday being a ghost town, thousands of supporters still left Bamenda for Yaounde to cheer their team irrespective of the consequences as they will have to return to Abakwa town on the day the movement of public transport and private cars is restricted by separatists.
It has been a daring people and it seems they will have to be more daring as the end of the stadium crisis and armed conflict still seems far away.
Institutions like Mitayen Co-operative Credit Union (MitaCCUL) NWCA-Kola Coffee accompanied by the region's elite, politicians and administrators galvanised supporters as well as the players and technical staff to ensure PWD Bamenda wins the trophy which they did.
"I have been in this for over 20 years and I can happily say this is the consecration of my career. When I arrived the town of Bamenda, I promised them joy, this is it. I saw fans who came from Bamenda with tears of joy in their eyes, and that made me happy", David Pagou, Coach PWD said during the post match press conference
According to the team President Abunde Pascal, the win is to please the ancestors of the team who have been waiting for a long time.