SDF lawmaker says bill on promotion of two official languages makes nonsense of awaited Special Status for Anglophone regions

Common law lawyers in Cameroon are smelling ‘yet another attempt’ to suppress the use of English language even in the North West and South West regions of Cameroon.This follows the tabling of a bill to promote the use of the two official languages(English and French) throughout the country.In a telephone interview with senator Kemende Henry,the lawmaker of the Social Democratic Front, he described the bill as “…that if adopted will make nonsense to the much talked recommendation of a special status to be implemented in the North West and South West regions”.To the senator, the bill deposited by government totally undermines the very reason why common law lawyers began a strike in 2016.Senator Kemende says government is scheming a way that French civil servants who do not understand or speak English will be posted in the Anglophone regions to carry out their activity not minding if the people administered understands the French language.He accepts that the bill specify it’s application will be throughout Cameroon (meaning English speaking civil servants will equally be free to speak the language anywhere). But to the senator, it is a mere window dressing given that government will systematically not post English speaking civil servants to French zones.A bill on the promotion of official languages tabled when Anglophones and Cameroonians are waiting for the contents of the special status in the North West and South West regions of Cameroon.Senator barrister Kemende Henry examines that if Anglophones are deprived of the very use of English language in the North West and South West regions by the bill, it means the contents of the special status will be “acidic to Anglophones”.Earlier,barrister Eta Bisong Junior criticized the bill promising a public demonstration by common law lawyers if the bill is adopted.Senator Kemended acknowledges that fact that bills from the government are always adopted but says “…government might withdraw the bill or carryout some amendments given that Anglophone lawyers and we opposition law makers have made a lot of noise about it”.The bill at the moment is being debated at the national assembly in Cameroon. It will equally be forwarded to the senate.Mimi Mefo Info

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