Foremost Cameroonian opposition leader, Maurice Kamto, has regretted that a recent hike in fuel prices will exacerbate the misery of citizens who are already struggling with inflation and soaring cost of living.
Kamto, President of the Cameroon Renaissance Movement party, who now leads an opposition coalition called the Political Alliance for Change, said the hike in fuel prices is unsustainable.
His reaction, published on his official social media channels, comes two days after the Cameroon Government raised fuel prices by 15%.
While a liter of petrol moved from FCFA 730 to FCFA 840, the price of Diesel rose from FCFA 725 to FCFA 825 per liter.
This was the second time the government was increasing fuel prices within 12 months.
President Paul Biya, who has ruled the central African nation for 41 years now, had hinted on an imminent rise in fuel prices during his end-of-year speech on December 31, 2023.
He argued that his government was cutting down subsidies on fuel, which weighed adversely on the country’s budget, costing around FCFA 640 billion in 2023.
Biya’s promise came to pass on February 3, when a release from the Secretary General at the Prime Minister’s Office, Seraphin Magloire Fouda, set the new prices for fuel, obviously not to the benefit of Cameroonians.
A firm critic of President Biya’s government, Maurice Kamto says the measure is proof of the government’s indifference to the plight of Cameroonians, who are already impoverished by inflation, unemployment, and bad governance.
“Unfortunately, the repercussions of this unsustainable rise in fuel prices are not long in making themselves felt,” Kamto wrote.
“They are adding dangerously to the worsening living conditions of our compatriots, already suffocated by the high cost of living. At the same time, it is shocking to see signs of the leaders’ intolerable contempt for the suffering of the people.”
Kamto has urged Cameroonians to wake up to the increasing cost of living by massively participating in the presidential elections next year.
Maurice Kamto has been seeking to replace Paul Biya as President of Cameroon for years now.
He contested the results of the 2018 elections where he trailed behind Biya’s CPDM party, which was said to have won 71.28% of votes.
As Cameroonians head to the polls again in 2025, Kamto says the best way to express their grief against the regime will be to give it a vote of no confidence.
“Dear compatriots from all corners of Cameroon, the miserable living conditions that the government is inflicting on the overwhelming majority of the population of our country call for a national awakening,” he said.
“This patriotic awakening will involve mass registration on the electoral registers for a vote of no-confidence against the Government and the CPDM and its allies at the next municipal and legislative elections in February 2025 and the presidential election in October of the same year.”
“This republican upsurge will also require absolutely vigilant electoral monitoring and a resolute defence of your votes against any fraud at each election.”
It is yet uncertain where President Paul Biya will be seeking another mandate, but he has already received dozens of “motions of support” from CPDM militants calling on him to run.
Biya, who will be 92 at the time of the elections, has no defined successor at the moment.