Among reasons why over 1000 women are present in Yaounde, Cameroon for the maiden edition of the National Women’s Convention for Peace in Cameroon are fear, worry and burdens resulting from the conflicts in the different regions.
This was echoed by Mme. Yvonne Muma Bih president of the Cameroon Women’s Peace Movement, CAWOPEM during her welcome speech to the participants at the conference.
Thanking the 38 Women-led networks that ensured the successful organization of the conference, Mme. Yvonne Muma Bih called on the participants to form a coalition because many voices can easily change the narrative.
She disclosed that they are there as women to use the tools of social justice and equity, to call on all stakeholders to heed to their plea for a continuation of the dialogue and eventual end to the crisis.
“We are here as respondents who have the zeal to fill the void, by engaging in raising community awareness thereby including citizenry to the ongoing peace process”, Mme. Yvonne Muma Bih said.
She added that women do not have a magic panacea but are an indispensable spice to make the peace building process palatable.
To Mme. Yvonne Muma Bih, women have the credibility, trust and influence earned from years of work at the community level. Women according to her are capable of picking up pieces during crisis.
“Women are capable of picking up the pieces during crisis and use it as leverage during peace building processes when official responses seem inadequate or slow”, she added.
The women are gathered as one in Yaounde to stand as one and forster womanhood.
The North West and South West regions of Cameroon have been in crisis since late 2016 and many people especially women and children have lost their lives.
Women have often clamoured for priority in consultation and peace talks, though the crisis remains ravaging.