Cameroon must return to federal system abolished under Ahidjo – Herman Cohen


Former assistant Secretary of State for Africa, Herman Cohen says Cameroon must go back for the original federal system that was illegally abolished during Ahidjo administration.

Ahidjo Cameroon’s first president governed with a federal system for the first twelve years of his presidency. But in 1972, the federal system was abolished for a United Republic of Cameroon directed from Yaounde.

There has been a resurgence in the push by some southern Cameroonians to secede from French-dominant Cameroon. A similar agitation started in the late 1990s. The recent one (October 2017 till date) started as peaceful protests against marginalization till the government cracked down on protesters.

It has now taken a violent turn as separatists elements have staged guerilla style attacks on security forces killing over twenty of them. The two Anglophone regions (North West and South West) have also been under curfew for the last few months.

Ahidjo stepped down as president in 1982 and Paul Biya took over the reigns. The current governance structure concentrates power in the presidency despite two chambers of the legislature – the 180-member National Assembly and the 100-member Senate.


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