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Cameroon’s opposition parties discuss route to peace with Secretary-General

21 December 2017

Leading political figures from across the spectrum have united in calling on Cameroonians to engage in dialogue to resolve the ongoing challenges within the country.

Eight opposition parties, and more than 30 civil society organisations, in addition to the governing party, all met with Secretary-General Patricia Scotland to discuss the future of Cameroon.

It was widely agreed that meaningful engagement through honest and inclusive dialogue would enable the country to begin the process of bringing unity for all Cameroonians.

Secretary-General Scotland said, “It was enormously encouraging that political parties, civil society representatives and citizens from every corner of Cameroon chose to meet with me to discuss some of the most pressing challenges facing their country today.

“Everyone that took part in the discussions did so in the spirit of cooperation and inclusivity, as we worked towards the meaningful dialogue that will enable Cameroon to move forward as the peaceful, unified nation that it has always been.”

The meetings were part of the Secretary-General’s five-day visit to Cameroon, which has so far seen her hold high-level discussions with the President, Prime Minister and senior political figures. Today she will travel to Buea in the south-west of the country.

Earlier, the Secretary-General held conversations with renowned lawyer and 2018 presidential candidate Akere Muna.

Speaking after the meeting Mr Muna said, “The visit of the Secretary-General is very opportune from the point because she can emphasise the great need for dialogue as a means of preserving peace. It’s important for the Secretary-General to be here and it means the floodlights are shining on my country. From speaking to her I’m very pleased to say that she understands what the stakes are in our country and she sounded very passionate about making sure there is peace and dialogue in our country.

Mr Muna added, “I think the biggest support the Commonwealth can give now is through the electoral process; making sure that every voice is heard and counted. The Commonwealth can help the process by bringing observers who make the electoral commission feel protected and make Cameroonians come out to vote in all confidence.

Ahead of the Secretary-General’s visit to Buea, he concluded, “I’m also very pleased to know that the Secretary-General will be going to Buea; Buea is the historic capital of the anglophone part of Cameroon, and for the Secretary-General to go from Yaoundé to Buea is not only symbolic but very important and I’m sure that the anglophones of this country will be will be pleased to know that the Secretary-General will see what happens in Buea.”

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