ACTIONS TO MAINTAIN PEACE IN BORDER REGIONS

For decades today, Cameroon remains a peaceful harbor in the turbulent Central African sub region. Conflicts and wars escalating from neighboring nations such as the crises in the Central African Republic have had spilled over effects in Cameroon especially in the frontiers of the east region and the far north region. However, the casualties cause within Cameroon due to neighboring palaver has not been welcomed, as President Paul Biya took a series of measures to protect Cameroonians and even the citizens of Central African Republic who are victims of the crises.

The East Region especially the quarter called Mandjou where most of the Central African victims are lodged, have suffered very high crime waves with the local population suffering wanton destruction of their property, arm robbery has witnessed an increase during the day as well as at night and in some cases kidnappings and killings, not forgetting the very high rate of promiscuity. The toll on Cameroon is great as some Cameroon soldiers lost their lives to fleeing Central African rebels in the course of protecting Cameroon frontiers and ensuring the safe entry of the fleeing population.

These social problems degenerated due to the refugee influx into the East region of Cameroon, with camps harboring thousands of destitute people, amongst which some are in keeping of armaments like rifles and edged weapons. President Paul Biya been a diplomat knows only human solidarity accompanied with morality and human values can provide reasonable solutions. As he was craving for resources to cater for the distress population, so was he strategizing on measures to handle the ever growing security threats. His reflection leads to the creation of additional military units, the 201st Motorized Infantry Brigade, the 102 Air Force Base with their headquarters in Bertoua, the regional capital of the East region.  More Gendarmerie brigades and posts also saw the light of day. All this in a bid to curb the rising crime wave that was as an impact of the hostilities in the neighboring country.

As the commander-in-chief of the Defence Forces, the President of the Republic has deployed times without number military missions under the banner of the African-led International Support Mission to the Central African Republic – MISCA and later, the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic- MINUSCA.  This is to help bring peace to the Central African Republic, thereby keeping the country border regions safe. Like any father who has the interest of his children at heart, the over 2000 Cameroonians who were residing at the CAR during the heat of the crisis in 2013, were evacuated to Cameroon on board the Camairco and Air Force aircrafts  in numerous chartered flights. This humanitarian action of the Head of State can only be applauded.

Cynthia Efopa

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