Cover

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Title Page

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Copyright Page

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Dedication

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Contents

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p. v

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Preface

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pp. vi-vii

Our cover photo records a high water mark for Cameroon’s Social Democratic Front, in April 1999, a time exactly half way between this opposition party’s birth in 1990 and this book’s publication date. On the left is Yaya Saidou...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-4

Cameroon’s Social Democratic Front (SDF) nears its 20th year as the country’s only viable opposition party. It combats both the Cameroon Peoples’ Democratic Movement (CPDM) regime and its own centrifugal forces...

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1. SDF: “Suffer Don Finish!” or “Suffer Dey (fo’) Front!”?

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pp. 5-21

The party’s acronym has been appropriated both by advocates as a rallying cry and by foes as mockery in the two readings this Pidgin heading spells out. Joining simultaneous calls for democratic renewal throughout sub-Saharan...

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2. The party’s roots: the North West Province origin & setting

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pp. 22-32

The SDF is a North West Province creation. This was the party’s birthplace in a violent clash at Bamenda May 26, 1990. The province has sustained the party ever since. It will remain its core area under any conditions...

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3. The post-1992 SDF: primal challenge becomes survival struggle

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pp. 33-43

Returning now to Cameroon at large, after the containment by 1970 of (whatever its limits) the substantially populist-nationalist UPC, the bars were kept in place against challenges from any “movement” politics...

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4. Anglophones & Federalism

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pp. 44-50

Its genesis more than a quarter century ago, long before its formal launch in 1990, reveals the party’s anglophone bearings.56 Previous writings about Fru Ndi and the SDF in circulation outside Cameroon tell nothing about his earlier...

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5. Social Democracy in Africa & the SDF

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pp. 51-64

“Social Democratic” in the party’s name aligns it with a cluster of principles and practices two centuries old in their European setting–perhaps the term “conventions” is now a better fit for the eclecticism of the social democratic...

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6. The party’s branches: North West Province experience since 1992

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pp. 65-79

Its first two emotionally charged years created an SDF organization and mentality in North West Province, forged in emergency conditions, that remain by and large intact. The party adapted long-established local...

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7. The SDF’s current condition and future prospects

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pp. 80-96

Looking now to the present and future in Cameroon-wide terms, the SDF’s and John Fru Ndi’s conditions are difficult and prospects are uncertain, and subject to agendas set in environments of politics and policy making they do...

End Notes

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pp. 97-109

Index

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pp. 110-111

Back Cover

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