The November session of parliament in Cameroon opens today.
Members of parliament are due to meet at 11:00am while senators begin meeting at 4:00 PM Cameroon time.
While it is typical of the November session of parliament to be dominated by debates on the state budget, many speculate that this year’s could be different, given the burning issues affecting Cameroon.
For the first time ever, the parliament that had vehemently refused to discuss the Anglophone crisis made an official outing on the subject, during the Major National Dialogue last October. With the special status for the Anglophone regions as one of the top recommendations of the dialogue talks, many believe the time is right for the ongoing conflict to take center stage at the parliamentary session.
Critics want the crisis brought to the table to pave a way for a hitch free municipal and legislative elections February 9 2020.
The SDF has decided to boycott the session citing government failure to address the Anglophone conflict.
With the current fighting, it will be near impossible to have candidates hold campaign rallies, talk less of voters going to the polls in the crisis-hit regions.
To make matters easy, the work group on Special status yesterday released recommendations for the implementation of the special status for the two region, leaving the ball in the court of the authorities in power, notably the head of state and the parliament.
While the MPs and Senators gear up for later today, those of the Social Democratic Party, SDF are likely not to be with their counterparts, as they express their dissatisfaction with the State’s handling of the crisis. While some have praised the move, others say it comes too late and the party is just scared it will lose its grounds if it contests in the upcoming elections.
Many are however questioning how much the predominantly CPDM chambers can do, after throwing out opposition proposals to have the crisis on the table on several occasions.
The National Assembly is meeting for the 10th time since the Anglophone crisis escalated in 2016, observers are wondering what will change this time, given that Presidents of both houses have not ceased to blame pro independence activists, referring to them as terrorists.
Only the outcome will tell what business, they are up to.