Business operators in Nkambe, the chief town of Donga Mantung Division have been gripped with heightened anxiety over rumors the divisional headquarters will soon be re-connected by road to the neighboring Bui Division.
The division has been disconnected by road for close to 4 years. Separatist fighters in Bui ordered the closure of traffic on the road accusing people in Nkambe of turning their back on their struggle for independence and not sympathizing with them.
Nkambe people were accused of not respecting ghost town operations, calls for lockdowns, school boycott, and boycott of national day celebrations amongst others.
Since then, commuters traveling to and from Nkambe have been traveling to Bamenda through the Adamawa Region, West Region, before finding their way into Bamenda, a journey that costs FCFA 50.000 for a round trip.
Drivers and business operators have been the most affected. This week, a message circulated on social media allegedly from a popular separatist group leader in Ndop, self-styled the Marines Mield Marshal No Pity.
According to the message circulating, checkpoints along the road mounted by separatist fighters will have to be reduced.
“From 1st September 2021, and in view of our independence day on October 1, I Field Marshall No Pity have declared open all movement along the Kumbo-Nkambe highway. This shall be a test period to observe if traitors and blacklegs have changed. All drivers using the road shall respect all Ambazonia laws. Only on October 1 that there shall be a checkpoint on the road and the location shall be communicated,” the message reads.
In Nkambe, business people are jubilating and waiting for the weekend to reach Bamenda again through Kumbo-Ndop and Bamenda to buy goods and stock their shops.
According to Mbunwi Godlove, he is counting on time.
“I’m happy because my business will become profitable again. Imagine that I have been spending 70 thousand only on transport to and from Bamenda each time I want to buy goods. When you succeed to get here to Nkambe, they are expensive and the residents cannot afford to buy. Turn over profit does not come and I was almost giving up,” he said.
The wait is on and the hope is that it should not be long.