2023 Southern Cameroons People's Conference: Mama Ambazonia Urges Full Implementation Of Resolutions
The Southern Cameroons People's Conference held in Toronto, Canada between 5th to 8th Oct ended with far reaching resolutions. The conference which was a follow-up of a previous conference has renewed hopes, reinvigorated a new spirit and sharpened focus on the right to self determination which will eventually midwife Ambazonia independence.
The conference achieved among other things, the renewed determination to create for the people, a democratic society that would ensure the Rule of Law, respect for human rights and freedoms, and the dignity of all men and women in all communities large and small.
However, a Southern Cameroon/Ambazonia activist and the founder of Mama Ambazonia Initiative, Mengnjo Paulette has appealed to all stakeholders in the project to walk the talk, particularly on all the resolutions reached.
At the just concluded conference in Canada, Mengnjo Paulette while delivering her presentation before Mr. Anthony Asong led Thematic Humanitarian Committee, highlighted the challenges of the vulnerable children, women and the aged.
Below is a full text of her presentation at the conference: www.scpconference.com
A Presentation by Mengnjo Paulette on Behalf of Mama Ambazonia Initiative at the The Southern Cameroons People's Conference in Canada, October 5 - 8 2023.
The Chair SCPC,
Distinguished Members of various Ambazonian Groups here present,
Ladies and Gentlemen.
I stand on all existing Protocols.
Our Quest for Statehood: Addressing the Humanitarian Needs of our People
Most people know me as Mama Ambazona and rightly so because my life and my being rotates on the struggle for the Statehood of Ambazonia.
Critical Areas of the Struggle:
Since the inception of our collective struggle to date, it has revolved on three critical but strategic points:
- Self Defense
- Diplomatic Offensive
- Humanitarian Support
With the horror rained on our people by the LRC military, it became imperative to support our people in chronic need (Victims of the Struggle)
This is where it beckons on all of us. However, as a concerned individual, I transited from my former posture to a humanitarian advocate “Mama Ambazonia Initiative”(MAI). Today, it has become the essence of my being on earth.
MAI Humanitarian Focus
a) Our main focus has been on the needy in the struggle and other necessary general interventions.
There has been a misrepresentation between the needy and the needy of the struggle. We have always had and will always have the needy in our societies and communities. The needy of the society/community in general of course is not the humanitarian focus of the struggle. The focus therefore is on the victims of the struggle that are in dire need. These are those rendered vulnerable by the struggle. They include:
- Families of fallen heroes
- Homeless/Maimed/Raped/ (ie molested and Traumatized persons)
- Refugees and
Permit me to highlight the following under-reported statistics of the genocide in our Homeland:
- Over 42,000 Persons have been Killed by LRC since 2016
- Over 720,000 Refugees, with about 500,000 in LRC, 200,000 in Nigeria and the rest spread across Ghana and in the wilds.
- Over 600 villages razed down
- Over 7,000 raped cases with over 10% pregnant
- Tens of thousands mained and Traumatized
- Over 3,500 persons in prisons and other LRC torture/detention camps/centres
If these figures don't alert the world on the ongoing genocide in Ambazonia that must be stopped, then there may never again be R2P (Right Protect), translating to commitments being for a specific others only.
These figures explain the enormity of the humanitarian crisis. This is where MAI comes in but can only do very little in this wide spectrum of humanitarian catastrophe. It is therefore a pointer which is incumbent upon us all to do more in order not to disappoint the vulnerable and other victims of the struggle.
b) MAI’s specific interventions
while supporting other areas of need highlighted in (a) above, have traversed interventions in food and medical needs of Refugees, IDPs and Prisoners.
We have lend support to the food and medical needs of those in various prisons and more specifically those in KondenguiPrincipal Prison on a monthly basis since January 2019 to date. In the earlier days, we supported the legal defense.
We have been supporting Refugees in Ogoja, Abokem Water Fall, Ikom, Abuja, Ghana, Benin etc. We receive pleas for assistance from various centres. Some of the requests are life threatening situations. The demands are enormous but the funds very limited.
In addition to our food and medical support, we engage in some sustainable livelihood initiatives for some vulnerable persons. Just to highlight few:
- We have empowered about 13 Refugees in Seamstressing. They were trained and given a start up kits of sewing Machines and some Materials.
- We empowered about 5 Hair dressers and set them up with working materials.
- We do periodic handouts of Food Packages to our Refugees between camps in Ogun States.
- We have our Monthly Fellowship with some groups of needy. We try to empower them with Loans for businesses, farming and training.
We also leverage and support other humanitarian entities when they solicit for support from us.
My pay check is our major source of Funding making me to work round the clock just for this purpose. Friends, family and some public donations in cash or kind are also significant.
All of these are still very insignificant given the magnitude of the need. Clearly, there is a large gap between the resources we have and the need, which should be narrowed.
Recommendations and Conclusion
- Cataloguing platforms/entities should come begin to document all the atrocities being committed for eventual action and reparation.
-There should be more robust engagement and collaboration among all our leaders, specifically the humanitarian forerunners to avoid only few beneficiaries with at the expense of all others in need.
- Education on sustainability to the victims should be well coordinated for better outcomes.
- We should not be weary of donating to authentic outfits to support those that are in dire need of our assistance.
- Accountability, transparency and regular feedback by various entities is the only way to revamp donour’s interst in supporting our activities.
The humanitarian needs for the victims of our collective struggle are enormous, just as the other areas of the struggle are in dire need too. We can't be tired of funding various aspects of the struggle. Let us rekindle our support to the struggle so that we can actualize our homeland with less pain.
Thank You all.
Mama Ambazonia (Paulette B. Mengnjo)