By Wilibroad Buma
The war-ravaged self-proclaimed independent Ambazonia Republic has seen the emergence of a unified, structured and consolidated defense front made up of close to a dozen armed groups according to sources closed to the Ambazonia Defense Forces (ADF), one of the leading armed groups around which the fighting entities have coalesced.
The aim of creating the contender forces according to Ben Kuah, Chairman of the Ambazonia Defense Council of the ADF is to help the independence fighting forces to harmonies their strategy in fighting French Cameroun occupation of their territory, and most importantly to maintain discipline within the ranks of the Ambazonian fighters in terms of the respect of human rights, and the laws of engagement in an arm conflict. Another important reason for the amalgamation of the Ambazonian forces is to enable the groups improve on their fundraising ability to help them acquire more sophisticated arms to outmatch the weapons of Cameroun Republique military that have been causing havoc in Ambazonia by mass indiscriminate killings, massive destruction of property including the burning of tens of elderly persons in their houses and thousands of homes.
Although generally poorly armed, except for some units of the ADF that AmbaNews24 has seen heavily armed, the Ambazonia independence fighters have successfully undermined Cameroun’s ability to govern the restive region. Their activities have also threatened to collapse Cameroun’s entire economy which largely depends on resources exploited from the territorial space of Ambazonia. They control many rural areas, miles of roads between villages and cities, and from one city to another, have effectively shut down operations in mainly Cameroun government-operated corporations such as the Cameroon Development Corporation (CDC).
In the past several months as the international Community has mounted pressure on both sides to enter into some form of dialogue and as Cameroon has intensified its killing of armless Ambazonian civilians and the burning down of Ambazonian towns and villages, the President of the Ambazonia Governing Council, Dr. Cho Ayaba has asked Ambazonians to step up the self-defense of Ambazonian citizens, including arming themselves for their own responsibility to self-protection and right to life. In line with this call, Dr Cho Ayaba has successfully brought together most of the radical defense groups together to form what is now popularly known as the Contender Force.
In a joint declaration signed by all the groups, they pledged to work together to defend the independence and territorial integrity of the new Ambazonian Republic. On his Rebel Tv yesterday, 06/12/19, the Spokesman of the Separatist Ambazonia Defense Forces launched the Contender Forces and called on Ambazonians to contribute financially towards the protection of the Ambazonian People. He justified such rare public launch on the fact that the Ambazonians are an endangered people, and they have the right to defend their humanity in the absence of the United Nations invoking the principle of the Responsibility to Protect.
In a separate war related incident, almost 12 Cameroun soldiers were killed in the restive Far North region of the country and ironically a majority of those killed were Ambazonian citizens. This incident has caused many observers to accuse the Cameroun regime of targeting Ambazonia citizens, and placing them at the forefront of the war against the Islamic Boko Haran militia in an effort to avoid a situation where train Ambazonians in the Cameroun military may defect to fight with the Ambazonian self-defense forces.