By: Nkafou Kingsley
For the first time in Cameroon’s history, three ‘Presidents’ in their own rights would be addressing Cameroonians today, Monday December 31, 2018.
These “Presidents” include the official and legal Head of State of Cameroon, Paul Biya who would be making his traditional end of year address to the nation today at 8:00pm.
Meanwhile, Maurice Kamto who declared himself winner of the October 7 presidential election would also be addressing Cameroonians today.
At the same time, the “President” of the Interim Government of Ambazonia would be addressing Cameroonians mostly from the two restive Anglophone Regions were Restoration Forces want the establishment of the State of Ambazonia.
The three ‘Presidents’ are expected to dwell on the current conflict in the Anglophone Regions, but from different angles. While Paul Biya would be hailing the military despite its poor human rights record in the war and preaching decentralisation as well, Maurice Kamto would be castigating the same military and Yaoundé Government while preaching Federalism. However, with Dr Sako talking from his base in the United States, it would be to shower praises on the fighters on the ground as well as encourage the people to remain steadfast while building the hope of a free Ambazonia in the hearts of the people.
Likewise, the three ‘Presidents’ would be using different channels of mass media to reach out to their targeted population.
While Paul Biya’s message would be broadcast on national radio and television, CRTV, that of Dr Sako would be aired on the separatist run television, the Southern CameroonsBroadcasting Corporation (SCBC) TV and the Ambazonia Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) TV which are based out of the country but available on the internet and satellite.
In the meantime, Maurice Kamto has launched his own television channel named Renaissance 237 TV on December 28 and through it the self-declared President of Cameroon would be passing on his message to his followers.
One major difference would be at the level of language. With Paul Biya’s inability to faithfully utter words in English, his message would be said in French and later on interpreted for the English population.
However, with Kamto’s mastery of both English and French, he would make use of the two languages. But with the pain of Francophone domination and marginalisation Samuel Sako is certainly going to maintain a unilingual approach, making use of the Queen’s language only.
What matters most would be the impact of these messages on the ground. With the world becoming a global village and the inability for the Government to perfectly control communication channels, all three ‘Presidents’ in their own rights would be able to address their people but with varying success as the days after unfold.