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The Anglophone Cameroon Predicament

Mufor Atanga

Publication Year: 2011

This study explores the predicament of Anglophone Cameroon ñ from the experiment in federation from 1961 to the political liberalisation struggles of the 1990s ñ to challenge claims of a successful post-independence Cameroonian integration process. Focusing on the perceptions and actions of people in the Anglophone region, Atanga argues that what has come to be called the ìAnglophone Problemî constitutes one of the severest threats to the post-colonial nation-state project in Cameroon. As a linguistic and cultural minority, Anglophone Cameroonians realised that the Francophone-led state and government were keener in assimilation than in implementing the federal and bilingual nation agreed upon at reunification in 1960. Calls for national integration became simply a subterfuge for the assimilation of Anglophones by Francophones who dominated the state and government. The book details the various measures undertaken to exploit the Anglophone regionís economy and marginalise its people. Principally the economic structures meant to facilitate self-reliant development were undermined and destroyed. Institutionalised discrimination took the form of the exclusion of Anglophones from positions of real authority, and depriving the region of any meaningful development. With the advent of multi-party politics, most Anglophone Cameroonians increasingly have made vocal demands for a return to a federation, in order to adequately guarantee their rights and recognition for them as a political and cultural minority. Actively encouraged by France, the Francophone-led regime in Cameroon has refused to yield to such demands, despite the grave danger of violent conflict and possible secession.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication, About this Book

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Contents

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pp. i-iii

List of Tables

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pp. v-vi

List of Figures

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p. vi-vi

Selected Abbreviations

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p. vii-vii

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Acknowledgements

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p. ix-ix

During the course of the research on which this book is based I became indebted to so many people that I could not possibly mention all of them here. However, I do remain eternally grateful for their assistance and support. During my fieldwork in Cameroon, I received ...

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Foreword

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pp. xi-xv

Regime members and organic scholars tended to be quite optimistic about the integration of the Anglophone minority into the Francophone-dominated post-colonial state in Cameroon. For instance, in his book The One and Indivisible Cameroon published in 1981, an Anglophone scholar, John W. Forje, ...

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Preface

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pp. xvii-xxiii

This book emerged largely out of my dissertation and based mainly on my research in the early 1990s on the Anglophone predicament in Cameroon. In revising and preparing the manuscript for publication what was most striking is how little has changed since the initial research was carried out. If anything, ...

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Chapter One - General Introduction

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pp. 1-26

It is very difficult to comprehend events in contemporary Africa without going back to her colonial experience. This applies as well to Cameroon’s triple colonial experience2 that has come to have a great bearing and influence in shaping events at the advent of independence and thereafter. Cameroon, with its ...

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Chapter Two - Colonialism and the Development of Modern Political Institutions in the Cameroons

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pp. 27-51

The key to the understanding of contemporary politics in the Cameroons lies in the proper grasp of its colonial history and its extra-ordinarily rich cultural, ethnic, economic and political diversity. The Federal Republic of Cameroon came into being in 1961 as the first “bilingual” federation in ...

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Chapter Three - The Impact of Reunification on West Cameroon

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pp. 53-107

Before we examine the various facets of reunification as it came to be applied, it is important to analyse Franco-Cameroon relations as they have at times been fundamental in determining internal policies. In Chapter Two, we saw how French colonial policy came to influence the outlook of the ...

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Chapter Four - The Failure of National Integration: An Analysis of the Biya Regime, 1982-1993

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pp. 109-159

Biya’s succession to Ahidjo followed Ahidjo’s plan. In 1977, he had caused the constitution to be amended, making the Prime Minister the constitutional successor to the President. However, soon after the November 1982 peaceful transfer of power to Biya by Ahidjo, relations between the two ...

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Chapter Five - Summary and Conclusion

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pp. 160-171

Chapter One, examined the role of the various forces that came to be determining factors in the politics of contemporary Cameroon. The plight of Anglophone Cameroon as a minority in the Republic of Cameroon has come to be the major contradiction and point of conflict in the well publicised ...

Appendix I - Constitutional Position of the Southern Cameroons in the Event of It Electing to Become Part of the Republic of Cameroon

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pp. 172-175

Appendix II - Open Letter to All English-Speaking parents of Cameroon from the English-Speaking Students of the North-West and South-West Provinces

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pp. 175-185

Appendix III - The Buea Declaration of the All Anglophone Conference

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pp. 186-196

Bibliography

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pp. 198-215

Back cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9789956726608
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956717118

Page Count: 266
Publication Year: 2011