Ngarbuh Killings: Gov’t Still To Administer Justice One Year After

Today makes one year after at least 20 civilians were killed in Ngarbuh, a locality in Ndu, Northwest region of the republic of Cameroon. 365 days after the act, the government is yet to administer justice to perpetrators.

Some of the victims of the ngarbuh killings

Court hearings to punish the perpetrators have been adjourned at least twice, delaying judgment. However, the next has been slated for February 18, 2021.

Survivors are equally afraid to testify in court.  “Many victims of Ngarbuh massacre went into hiding after the incident. At the moment, we have just two or three victims that are ready to testify against those who committed the killings in court. We as lawyers have the impression that there is fear,” Mimi Mefo Info cited Barrister Gbaka Ernest, one of the lawyers defending the victims.

Barrister Gbaka further told MMI that “one of the victims who came to court returned to Ngarbuh village and was intimidated by some Fulanis. The victim explained to us that he was working on the farm when some Fulanis came and intimidated and threatened to kill him. This should be one of the reasons why many are afraid to talk in court.”

some property destroyed in the process

The killing of at least 21 civilians, including 13 children and 1 pregnant woman in Ngarbuh happened on February 14, 2020.

Human Right Watch, HRW, findings showed that government forces and armed ethnic Fulani were responsible for the killing.

those killed on February 14 in Ngarbuh prior to burial

However, Government’s spokesman, Rene Emmanuel Sadi, discredited the report published by HRW, stating that “Human Rights Watch, like several other groups…has been quick to publish a false balance sheet of this regrettable incident, while describing in great detail and in a fanciful way the alleged events and the alleged perpetrators, without having carried out a visit to the area or an investigation…”

Following local and international pressure, Cameroon government created a commission of inquiry and on April 12, 2020 the government admitted the involvement of two soldiers and one gendarme in the massacre. The officers were apprehended in June 2020 and a court case was launched.

Recently, the government disclosed that FCFA 88 million has been allocated to victims of the Ngarbuh incident with each families to bag home 5 million CFA. The moves has been criticised in the nation.

According to the president of the Cameroon People’s Party, CPP, Edith Kah Walla, no amount of money can ever replace human lives.

“…it is unacceptable that government has unilaterally fixed the price of human life at Five Million Francs CFA. This means soldiers can invade any village in the North West and South West Regions, kill people and later government pays five million to each family? The regime since the 14th of February 2020 when the killings took place has not cared for the whereabouts of the victims,” Edith Kah Walla said MMI.

In a recent tweet, Edith Kah Walla reaffirmed her love for the victim. “…one year ago, abomination was committed. To date justice is yet to be rendered. For the love of the children the women and the men of Ngarbuh…,” she tweeted.

Tweet by Edith Kah Walla

By Neville Mesumbe

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