A resident of Buea in the South West Region of Cameroon has decried what he says is an attempt on his life by security officers with the aid of bandits.
On the night of September 22, 2021, while tending to his wife who had just put to birth, his house, he says, was broken into by men intending to harm him.
“The soldiers passed through the ceiling and succeeded to enter the house where they met my grandmother, my younger sister, and my elder brother who was in the country to visit our mother,” he explained.
After the operation, the military men, he said, visited his home again and returned some of the items taken including his elder brother’s passport, two phones, and identity card. They however failed to return two other phones they took alongside an HP laptop and money.
“The next day after I left the hospital, I went to the Molyko police station where they launched investigations and caught one of the boys who brought the soldiers to my house,” he narrated.
The arrested suspect, he added, has since denied producing the said military men with whom he carried out the operation.
In an amateur video of the suspect shortly after he was caught, he acknowledges the act but maintains his aim was not to kill the owner of the house.
“We did not come to kill you … we left together to see a colonel. We were accompanied by two members of the Rapid Intervention Battalion who are smokers too…” he narrated.
He however refused to produce the other stolen items, as well as the security officers he is said to have carried out the operation with.
To the house owner, however, all that matters is bringing the soldiers involved to justice. “The government,” he said, “is preaching peace. They sent the military to bring peace in the South West Region but some of the soldiers have become our worse enemies.”
It remains unclear the next course of action to be taken.
Unfriendly exchanges between security officers and the population of the conflict-hit North West and southwest regions, however, are nothing new.
Memories are rife of instances of extortion, brutality, torture and illegal detention carried out by these officers of the law. Ironically, even in cases where they have been properly identified, their superiors and administrative officials have always remained mute, demonstrating the impunity and protection offered them as a reward for the chaos they stir.