The Union of Bali Nyonga Cultural Groups based in Washington DC, USA have indicted Cameroon’s military over rising deaths in their native Bali Nyonga.
In a release following the gory Sunday shooting which left a Christian dead and the PC Ntafoing pastor injured in Bali, North West Region of Cameroon, the groups say the incident was one of many instances of extrajudicial killing and maiming of innocent civilians.
“August 2021 is now one additional bloody month in Bali Nyonga. While we are still on the month’s 23rd day, the military of the Republic of Cameroun has executed 9 innocent men and women in Bali Nyonga,” they stated.
The Bali Sunday Church shooting, the release stated, “is a war crime and crime against humanity that we condemn with the total strength of our convictions. Attacks at places of worship are carried out exclusively by terrorist organizations.”
“The military of the republic of Cameroun has committed such heinous crimes in multiple occasions and the government is often quick to either dissociate the military from them despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary or maintain sealed lips,” they noted.
Such denial from government, the cultural groups said, remains unacceptable.
Guns can’t win
To the cultural groups, the government’s use of the a military approach will continue to yield more chaos only.
“As the American Ambassador in Cameroun stated, the crisis shall never be resolved militarily but by addressing the root causes of the problem through dialogue and negotiations,” they remarked.
In this light, the government, they pleaded, “should understand that she can never win such a war.”
Bike ban counterproductive
The US-based Bali natives in their statement also raised concerns over the prevailing ban on the circulation of motorbikes, imposed by government and reciprocated by a separatist ban on cars.
“These senseless bans have deprived our people of their basic human rights and dignity, including freedom of movement, access to healthcare facilities and food items,” they remarked.
It was because of this blockade, the cultural groups recalled, that “christians used a locally made two-wheeled cart to rush the mother of 3 who was shot by the military to a local healthcare facility. She did not make it to the hospital as she lost her life on the way.”
“We shall continue to advocate for our people until justice is served,” they promised.