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The Secrets of an Aborted Decolonisation

The Declassified British Secret Files on the Southern Cameroons

Carlson Anyangwe

Publication Year: 2010

A remarkable feature of the collapse of the British Empire is that the British departed from almost every single one of their colonial territories invariably leaving behind a messy situation and an agenda of serious problems that in most cases still haunt those territories to this day. One such territory is the Southern British Cameroons. There, the British Government took the official view that the territory and its people were ìexpendableî. It opposed, for selfish economic reasons, sovereign statehood for the territory, in clear violation of the UN Charter and the norm of self-determination. It transferred the Southern Cameroons to a new colonial overlord and hurriedly left the territory. The British Governmentís bad faith, duplicity, deception, wheeling and dealing, and betrayal of the people of the Southern Cameroons is incredible and defies good sense. Ample evidence of this is provided by the declassified documents in this book. Among the material are treaties concluded by Britain with Southern Cameroons coastal Kings and Chiefs; and the boundary treaties of the Southern Cameroons, treaties defining the frontiers with Nigeria to the west and the frontier with Cameroun Republic to the east. The book contains documents that attest to the Southern Cameroons as a fully self-governing country, ready for sovereign statehood. These include debates in the Southern Cameroons House of Assembly; and the various Constitutions of the Southern Cameroons. The book also reproduces British declassified documents on the Southern Cameroons covering the three critical years from 1959 to 1961, documents which speak to the inglorious stewardship of Great Britain in the Southern Cameroons. This book removes lingering doubts in some quarters that the people of the Southern Cameroons were cheated of independence. Its contents are further evidence of their inalienable right and sacred duty to assert their independence. No one who reads this book can possibly be indifferent to the just struggle of the Southern Cameroons for sovereign statehood.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. v-vi

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pp. 1-14

Great Britain, with its enormous and tested sea power, was the biggest colonial Power ever. At the zenith of the British Empire, a third of the world was under the British flag. But, since by the nature of things no condition is permanent the British Empire, like all other empires before it, was soon to perish. ...

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Chapter 1. British Treaties with the Chiefs of Bimbia and Victoria

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pp. 15-28

Lieutenant Edward Charles Earle, Commander of Her Britannic Majesty’s brig ‘Rapid’, on the part of Her Majesty the Queen of England, and the Chiefs of Bimbia and of the neighbourhood, on the part of themselves and of their country, have agreed upon the following Articles and conditions: ...

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Chapter 2. International Colonialism and the Emergence of the Southern Cameroons Polity

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pp. 29-48

Article 22 (1) To those colonies and territories which as a consequence of the last war have ceased to be under the sovereignty of the States which formerly governed them and which are inhabited by peoples not yet able to stand by themselves under the strenuous conditions of the modern world, ...

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Chapter 3. International Boundaries of the Southern Cameroons

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pp. 49-86

IV. From the head-waters of this southern tributary the boundary runs in a straight line to the top of a hill called Dakka (Won). From Dakka (Won) the boundary runs about south-south-west in a straight line for a distance of about 1¼ mile (2 kilom.), when it joins one of the tributaries of the Maio Kam (Mao Kam), ...

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Chapter 4. Legislation Establishing Courts of Justice

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pp. 87-166

“civil proceedings” means all civil actions triable by a magistrate and all proceedings in relation to the making of an order for the payment of a sum of money, or for the doing or abstaining from doing of any act or thing not enforceable by fine or imprisonment in the first instance; ...

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Chapter 5. Regulations Regarding Public Service, Plebiscite, Chiefs and House of Chiefs

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pp. 167-232

4. Without prejudice to the power conferred by the Order to terminate the appointment of a member of the Commission at any time the Commissioner may, if he thinks fit in the instrument appointing a member, specify the period, being a period not exceeding five years, during which the member shall hold office. ...

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Chapter 6. House of Assembly Debates: Supplementary Appropriation, Medical Reports, Firearms, ‘Check off ’ System

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pp. 233-290

Mr. Speaker: I have a communication from His Honour the Commissioner to report that the Honourable House of Chiefs assembled on Tuesday the 6th of September, 1960, and in the ensuing passed certain Resolutions for my consideration, which it is my duty to furnish to you to enable you to lay the said Resolutions ...

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Chapter 7. House of Assembly Debates: Supplementary Estimates, Water Rate, Agency Services, Defence

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pp. 291-344

Mr. N. N. Mbile (Kumba North-West): I am not a member of the staff of this House but I do know what generally happens is that copies of the Financial Secretary’s speech, now the Minister of Finance, are distributed directly so that members have copies and we can tick off as we go along and then we can debate. ...

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Chapter 8. House of Assembly Debates: Housing, Roads, Airstrips, Water Supply, ‘Federal Constitution’

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pp. 345-400

The Minister of Finance, Commerce and Industries (Mr. S. N. Muna): Mr. Speaker, Sir, I beg to move that the motion standing in the name of the Premier in the Order Paper for Thursday the 14th September, 1961 which became a dropped Order on Friday the 15th September, 1961, 1961, be replaced on the order book ...

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Chapter 9. Constitutions of the Southern Cameroons

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pp. 401-486

2.- (1) In this Order, unless it is otherwise expressly provided or required by the context- “the Cameroons” means the Cameroons under United Kingdom Trusteeship, which consists of that part of the territories known as the Cameroons to which the Trusteeship Agreement approved by the General Assembly of ...

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Chapter 10. Declassified Secret Files 1952, 1959

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pp. 487-508

In fact we have deliberately accepted the possibility of embarrassment from the unification movement as part of the price to be paid for our success, during the review of the constitution, in restraining Cameroons nationalist demands in the interest of the over-riding policy of consolidating three strong regions in Nigeria. ...

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Chapter 11. Economic Viability of the Southern Cameroons: Sir Phillipson’s Report, 1959

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pp. 509-580

After spending some four weeks in the United Kingdom on the preparatory study of publications and papers bearing on my subject I arrived in the Southern Cameroons on July 13. Since that date, apart from the time which was taken up by the Mamfe Conference (August 10 and 11) on the plebiscite questions and ...

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Chapter 12. Declassified Secret Files 1960

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pp. 581-676

The meeting was convened to discuss the question of what approaches should be made to the Republic of the Cameroons, in order to find out on what terms the British Cameroons would join the Republic of the Cameroons if the people so decided in the plebiscite. The meeting had before it a letter of 9th January ...

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Chapter 13. Declassified Secret Files: 1961

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pp. 677-796

We all remember the story of the king who loved beautiful clothes. We remember also how he was approached by two strange men who promised to weave for him the kind of cloth no one had ever seen before, and how for days and weeks these men pretended they were weaving the cloth. Then came the day the king was to ...

Titles by Langaa RPCIG, Back Cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9789956578771
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956578504

Page Count: 806
Publication Year: 2010