Cameroon – Ingratitude?: South Africa Stands In The Way Of Anglophone Crisis At UN Security Council

South Africa is set to frustrate efforts by the United Nations Security Council to formally find solutions to end the raging conflict in Cameroon's North West and South West regions where armed men are fighting for the independence of a country they call Ambazonia.

Germany's public international broadcaster, Deutsche Welle reported May 4 that the issue of Cameroon's worsening Anglophone crisis will come up at the UN Security Council on May 13 but the talks will be informal due to the reluctance of non-permanent member South Africa which wants the African Union to respond to the crisis instead.

Cameroonians have taken to social media to bash South Africa over her 'insensitivity'. “Shameful South Africa will go down so low,” says Richard Ndifor, a historian in Buea. Steve Duffe wonders why “The same South Africa that we sacrificed a lot to give them freedom is how standing in the way of freedom for others.”

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Others have been even more enraged in their reaction to the South Africa position. Eliane Fonsah says, “God punish South Africa for this nonsense stand. Where has the AU been since 2016? People are losing everything on both sides. Many vibrant young men from both Anglophone and French Cameroon have gone and lots of property destroyed. Thousands homeless…. What has South Africa as an individual country done since then?”

French magazine, Jeune Afrique first reported that the United States is behind the May 13 meeting and has since been persuading African countries on the council to drop their initial reluctance to talks on the Cameroon dossier.

The United States is behind the initiative that will focus on the humanitarian aspects of the conflict that began since 2016. The magazine quoted a statement from the US mission to the United Nations, who said the situation in Cameroon had caught their attention, especially with the devastating humanitarian crisis.

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« We hope that this meeting will encourage a more robust regional and international response (…) to avoid further deterioration of the situation, » the source added.

Many diplomats and international bodies have voiced out on several occasions, the need to push forward the ongoing socio-political unrest in Cameroon, to the United Nations Security Council.

At least four million persons need humanitarian assistance in the two English-speaking Regions. The International Crisis Group, ICG, recently reported that over 500,000 persons have been displaced, while 1,850 persons have died as a result of the crisis. A humanitarian assistance response plan, carried out by Cameroon and other international partners, has seen an inadequate response, according to UN resident coordinator, Allegra Baiocchi. Meeting in Yaoundé on May 3, Allegra and Territorial Administration Minister Atanga Nji announced they had created a platform to effectively account for the distribution of humanitarian needs.

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