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Tuesday, 22 March 2005

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Emmanuel Wembenyui, Brisbane-Australia

The involvement of many people to steer important decisions in the SDF is a very important step in the life of the party. It is certain that if Fru Ndi continues to make crucial decisions unilaterally, the SDF will continue to dwindle in strength because he will continue to commit the same errors that have rocked the party of late. We all know that many heads are better than one. In the early 90s, the SDF was a great force to be reckoned with but today it has lost many of its charismatic values. I am certain that if the founding fathers of the party always join Fru Ndi in deciding what is to be done for the party, then it will pave the way for the overhaul that is required to put the SDF back to its point of prominence, else...

Che Mofor

Whether it is the Founding Fathers choosing the parliamentarians or it is Fru Ndi who continues to practice undemocratic principles like choosing parliamentarians singlehandedly, one questions whether parliamentarians are chosen by the voters or any individual or body that be within the party.

Supporters of SDF who succeeded in "creating" parliamentarians in their constituencies knew whom they were casting their votes for and not for any individual that can understand himself with Fru Ndi or the socalled Founding Fathers. We know that some provices (North West, South West, West, Littoral)succeeded in obtaining many parliamentary seats. If the party takes some of these seats and give to individuals from areas where the SDF ddid not even show up, then this is not far from Biya's mentlity of Government Delegates. Remember that Nnoko Mbelle did not win the municipal elections as CPDM candidate in Kumba, yet he was given all the powers as Government Delegates - Let's forget about arguments like "He is doing a good job" and think about democratic principles.

The SDF should not forget that it is still a flag-bearer for democracy in Cameroon and should not let Fru Ndi to get drunk with absolute power and tarnish the image of the party, thus making it more difficult for the next generation of SDF politicians.

Janvier Tchouteu

The majority of SDF supports and militants in the 1990s were union nationalists filled with the revolutionary enthusiasm. They did not care about the ethnic group, first language or religious affiliation of SDF leaders or other Kamerunians in so far as they were dedicated to change. But is that not how the SDF leadership thought, especially the founding fathers who were almost entirely from the Northwest province. The truth is that like Bello Bouba, Ndam Njoya and other fake opposition leaders, Fru Ndi and most of the founding fathers never grasped or embraced the broad vision for change that the majority of Kamerunians and union nationalists were looking up to. That broad vision is a hard, demanding and merciless task to change the anachronistic French-imposed system. But when union nationalists and the majority of the struggling masses joined the SDF, the old leadership embraced the rhetoric of far-reaching change without embracing the ideals. That is why when the struggle entered its difficult stage, the Fru-Ndi led clique resorted to their original intention not of changing the system but of making a voice and getting a share of the "national cake". In so doing, they abandoned even any pretense of Kamerunian union nationalism and its goal of totally and completely changing the system.

Should anyone be surprised by the squabbling above? The answer is no. I will take you on a brief and selective ride going back in time. The interest of the struggle is to be guarded.

In Nfor Nfor's commission to Limbe and the South West in 1994 he supported the Ndoki Mukete led Southwest branch of the Muna-Asanga-Kamdoum clique that advocated joining a union government in subtle opposition to the broad-based objectives of the struggle. In the reorganization-provincial elections in December 1994 in Kumba that saw the Ndoki Mukete and his group losing their provincial positions, the Bamilekes were accused of plotting to take over the party by this group of union government enthusiasts.

In the 1999 convention elections in Yaoundé, the Fru-Ndi clique played the ethnic card, even within the Northwest province.

In December 2000 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, SDF's Professor NKWI was trying to convince Dutch Professor Piet Konings that it was good for the SDF to join a union government, just like that of Chirac and Jospin in France, even when it was made known to professor Nkwi that in France, it was possible because they had a developed and functioning democratic system with checks and balances, something Kamerun lacked.

In Fru Ndi's London visit in 2001, Ngwa Sirri in a conspiratorial manner told an SDF supporter from his home village that the party was doing fine, excerpt for the Bamilekes who wanted take over the party. The party militant who is a union nationalist was disappointed with him because he knew that those SDF figures he was talking about were the party incorruptible who were decrying the derailment of the party by the Fru Ndi clique. That party militant advised me to forget about the SDF.

In July 2002, just days before the NEC meeting to decide whether or not to go to parliament and accept the council seats, in a chanced encounter with the YCPDM president of the UK, the above party militant and I learnt that Fru Ndi had given his blessings to a deal worked out between Ngwa Sirri and co of the SDF and the CPDM that would see the SDF in parliament and taking the council seats that the CPDM had allowed the SDF to win. Preposterous, I had raged, almost losing my temper in disbelief. Three days after, there was the NEC meeting with a majority vote against accepting the CPDM’s handout. Fru Ndi overturned the decision by NEC, confirming the UK CPDM president’s words. In an interview a few days after Fru Ndi’s Stalin era dictatorial decision, Ngwa Sirri said that Fru Ndi was above the NEC and that the money from SDF parliamentarians and councilors was needed to run the party, as if from 1996-2002 contributions they made was to the party’s treasury. The fact is that it went to the SDF chairman.

Many union nationalists and revolutionaries in the SDF, the incorruptible and those committed to a total, complete and unwavering change of the system became disillusioned and quit the party after having warned that by accepting the seats for benefits that is hardly a decimal of what the SDF deserves, the party would be surrendering to Biya’s plans to portray it as a regional party. In presidential elections two years after, Fru Ndi was portrayed to have won only in those areas the CPDM had not stolen from the SDF in 2002.

And today, the squabble above involves those whose actions in the SDF never served the interest of the struggle, and not surprising, those in the Fru-Ndi clique and the founding fathers happen to come from one region, giving the Biya regime more ammunition to sell their claim to the world that the SDF is a regional party, an image union nationalists leaders in the SDF had fought hard to kill, but who when finally betrayed in 2002 quit the party, even though they decided not to reveal the horrors of the mafia in the inner-circle, afraid that it would be against the interest of the struggle.

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