(Business in Cameroon) - Nigeria has just taken another step forward in its commitment to help Cameroon fight Anglophone separatists who have created unrest in the country’s north-west and south-west regions for the past two years.
Indeed, we learnt, the federal government launched October 23 a military operation in the Cross River state, bordering Cameroon’s south-west region. The aim is to ward off the trafficking of weapons and the recruitment of Nigerian mercenaries by Cameroonian secessionist groups. Thousands of Nigerian soldiers have been deployed under this operation.
“The military command has identified about 27 different land routes on the Cameroon-Nigeria border. There is rising arms trafficking on these roads due to war in the southwest (ed: and northwest) of Cameroon. Kidnapping cases have also increased. Reports show that rebels come and recruit mostly young people from Nigeria who serve as mercenaries for the Cameroonian secessionist struggle,” Christian Ita, the spokesman for the Cross River State Governorate, told RFI's website.
“In addition to the deployment of troops, the operation will also build military and observation bases along the identified roads so that there will be a permanent solution to this security problem,” he added.
For the record, Sisuku Ayuk Tabe, the leader of the Cameroonian secessionists, was arrested January 5 this year, along with some of his mates at Nera Hotel in Abuja, Nigerian capital. They are awaiting trials to begin in Cameroon.
In the aftermath of their arrest, Nigeria committed to support Cameroon in preserving its sovereignty and integrity by avoiding making the country a rear base for Sisuku Ayuk Tabe’s mates.
Brice R. Mbodiam