Sons and Daughters of the Soil
Land and Boundary Conflicts in North West Cameroon, 1955-2005
Publication Year: 2011
Published by: African Books Collective
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To Professor Emeritus, Martin Zachary Njeuma, who rested in the lord on 28 April 2010, without seeing the outcome of this piece of work which we jointly laid . . .
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In the writing and completing this book inspiration was received from many people whom I would like to acknowledge. My profound gratitude goes to . . .
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Some eighty years ago, the German Kamerun which had been administered by Germany since July 1884 was divided into British and French spheres following the . . .
Chapter One - Introduction
A) Dancing the Plot and Riding the Past into the Present
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The Berlin West African Conference (1884-1885), apparently signalled the creeping European economic and political dominance in Africa and accelerated its . . .
B) Understanding inter-community boundary conflicts within Homer-Dixon Framework
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After carrying out research in the sub-region I was tempted to interpret it in the prism of Hommer-Dixon Scarcity Models (1994:5- 40 and 1996:45-46). Thomas Hommer-Dixon . . .
Chapter Two - The Geographical and Ethnographic Survey of Bamenda Grassfields
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If we are to study the boundary misunderstandings in Bamenda it will be imperative for us to situate the region and the people of the region. This chapter therefore . . .
A) Staking the Study Area
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The Bamenda Grassfields was an important political and economic zone in British Southern Cameroons. As part of the British Southern Cameroons, it was located at . . .
B) Peoples of the Region
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The indigenous people of the area fall into five main groups based on their oral traditions of origin, and broad linguistic and cultural similarities. These groups are: . . .
C) Traditional and Socio-Political Organisations
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The socio-political organisations of the ethnic groups discussed above can conveniently fall into two systems, namely, the centralised and “segmentary” or decentralised . . .
D) Decentralised Societies
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By contrast to the centralized societies, there is the segmentary group of Meta found in what Chilver and Kaberry prefer to call the Tadkon fondom. The Meta occupies the South Eastern . . .
E) The contending issues of boundary conflicts in theBamenda Grassfields
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The general causes of boundary conflicts in the Bamenda Grassfields can be traced under geographical, political social and economic domains. Geographically, the causes of . . .
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ethnographic survey of the Bamenda grassfields. This influenced both the distribution of . . .
Chapter Three - A History of Bambili/Babanki-Tungoh and the Genesis of the Boundary Conflict
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This chapter examines the arrival of the two communities -the Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh, in the region. It will look at, amongst other things, their . . .
A) Origin and the Migratory Histories of Bambili andBabanki-Tungoh
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Bambili and Babanki Tungoh belong to the Tikar group and speak a language which belongs to the semi-Bantu group1. As already mentioned, the Tikar . . .
B) Geographical Locations and Daily Activities
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Geographically, the villages of Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh formed the group that made up the Bafut Native Authority Area of the Bamenda Division of the Cameroons . . .
C) From Fraternal Friends (up to 1950s) to Fraternal Enemies?
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The people of Bambili/Babanki have lived at their present sites for more than a century. From the period when they arrived at their present site to the early 1950’s, . . .
D) Contending issues: causes of the boundary conflictbetween Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh
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The causes of the boundary dispute between Bambili and Babanki- Tungoh can be examined under political, economic, social and psychological . . .
E)The Manifestation of the Boundary Conflict c. 1950 -1955:The epoch of Law Suits
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The boundary conflict was manifested in three principal ways: from c.1950 to 1958 it was mainly in law suits filed by the contestants; from 1958 to 1973, when . . .
F) Decision on Land Dispute Between Babanki-tungoh AndBambili Agreed Upon By The Bafut
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1. That the area in dispute was allocated to Bambili following the Westmarcott Boundary of . . .
G) The War Period
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It is interesting to bear in mind that before the 1991 outbreak of war, the 1973 peace accord had been violated. On August 1, 1981, the Fon of Bambili . . .
H) The 1995 War
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Farming continued in the disputed area, in defiance of the terms of the 1994 Commission. There was every evidence to show that conflicts caused by . . .
I) The Wesmacott’s myth: a commentary
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Mr. A.B. Westmacott was the highest British colonial administrator known in colonial jargon as the resident in the Bamenda Division in 1958. As at 1958, the . . .
Chapter Four - The “Cold” Years, 1995-2005
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This section focuses on the cold period when there was no overt outbreak of hostilities amongst the two communities but which at the same time . . .
A) The Complaints Period
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On 8 July, 1998, His Royal Highness, the Fon of Bambili, addressed a letter to the Divisional Officer of Tubah complaining about the Babanki Tunguh people . . .
B) The Koungo Edima Commission
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The Bambili-Babanki Tungoh “tug of war”, so to say, over their common boundary which was causing considerable headache not only to the two communities . . .
Chapter Five - Consequences of the Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh Boundary Conflict and Some Suggested Solutions
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The boundary conflict between the two neighbouring villages of Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh had lasting ramifications which have adversely affected the socio-economic, cultural . . .
A) Social Consequences
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Socially, both villages suffered considerable number of deaths during the wars. Much property like houses, cattle and other fixed assets were damaged. Men, women and . . .
B) Economic Consequences
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Economically, whenever, the boundary conflict flared, it was difficult for fresh vegetable and other farm produce from the fertile boundary area to be transported . . .
C) Political Consequences
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Politically, the boundary conflict exposed the weaknesses or the inability of the administration to solve the boundary conflict. The Fon of Babanki-Tungoh . . .
D) Efforts at Resolving the Boundary Conflict
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The previous chapters reveal that the boundary conflict between Babanki-Tungoh and Bambili has been caused by a piece of fertile land which lies between . . .
E) Why the attempted solutions failed
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The reasons for the failure of the attempted solutions are many and varied. First of all the belligerents refused to cooperate in the search for peace. On . . .
F) Suggested Solutions
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Boundary conflicts are as old as human beings and there have always been ways and means adopted towards the resolution of boundary conflicts. At times . . .
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The Chapter has focused on the consequences of the boundary conflict between the belligerents. It has further examined some of the solutions . . .
Chapter Six - General Conclusion
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Boundaries and borders are very much ubiquitous in our daily lives. More often than not we come across borders and sometimes we are either ignoring them or . . .
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Notes on Sources
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Page Count: 246
Publication Year: 2011