Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle has appealed to President Biya to free all Anglophones arrested in the wake of the crisis in the Northwest and Southwest Regions. “Since January, I have been on my knees praying, appealing and actually begging that the detained Anglophones be released,” Ntumfor Halle told press in an interview.
Ntumfor Halle, who is the President of the General Assembly of the Cameroon Bar, said, “I am doing this impartially, objectively and I don’t have any interest in it. I am doing this using peace, dialogue and the Bible. I am not saying that I am perfect, but I will continue doing this, despite my human shortcomings. I will not rest. I will continue begging and praying that peace returns.”
Told that international bodies have pleaded for same release but nothing has happened, he questioned rhetorically: “Didn’t the international bodies know that these problems exist? They know the chequered history of Cameroon in 55 years. It is the accumulation of frustrations for over 55 years. I am not against the international bodies coming, but they are coming for their interests. They are merely echoing what I have been saying.”
He intimated: “However, I congratulate the British High Commissioner, Brian Olley, who said that the solution to this problem lies with Cameroonians – that the problem can be solved by Cameroonians.”
On the measures taken by the Government, he said: They are salutary; restoration of the internet of the internet is salutary. Without it, businesses were crumbling. But for any genuine, sustainable dialogue to happen, I have prescribed general amnesty to be granted to all the Anglophones; those detained, those who have gone underground and those in exile. It is enshrined in the Constitution. I am suggesting that either Parliament should ask the Head of State to take the measures to free them or the Head of State can do it otherwise, by exercising State authority of pardon.
There can be no State authority without peace. Liberating these people is part of his job. The Head of State should be the happiest person to know that peace has returned to his country. Another way is by nolle prosequi. This does not mean the Head of State is intervening in judicial matters. It is because peace is even compromised. We will not know peace until this problem is resolved. You will agree with me that peace can never exist without justice and equity. . Because, when peace is threatened, there can be no meaningful development of the people. Peace is the most precious asset for each nation, people, society and community.”
Talking about the new projects in the Anglophone sector, he asserted: “You can tar the whole of Northwest and Southwest – without solving this problem, there will continue to be crisis.”
He lamented that: “Some people are making political and financial capital out of the situation. Politicians should not exploit this crisis for personal aggrandisement and benefit. I belong to no party, I am a neutral Cameroonian who has no political platform, but I have been serving my nation. I will continue to pray that peace returns to the Northwest, Southwest and, of course, to the Far North Region that has not known peace for long due to the Boko Haram.”