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Presidential 2018 in CAMEROON: What to Remember

24.10.2018
The ballot boxes delivered their verdict, the presidential candidate Paul Biya to his own succession is the big winner of the poll of 07 October 2018 with 71,28% of the votes. "The lion man" as his followers nicknamed him will lead for 07 years the destiny of this country of nearly 20 million people who has just experienced one of the most incredible presidential elections in its history. Beyond the final verdict read by the Constitutional Court, the highest court in the country, the 2018 presidential election will have marked the spirits in Cameroon and outside the national triangle.

 AN ALL FIRE AND FLAME ELECTORAL CAMPAIGN

Officially launched on September 22, 2018 the election campaign set the tone, for those who can read in the signs. For a week the nine political parties selected for this poll have furrowed the regions of Cameroon to attract the favor’s favors. If the “caciques” of the party in power had no trouble to chain the meetings from the beginning, the first candidate to have launched the alert on the side of opposition is Cabral Libii of the party Universe. It is estimated that the number of people who came to welcome him on 23 September 2018 at a place known as the Cicam Stadium is nearly 5,000. Seduced by his charisma and his promises of a better tomorrow, the Cameroonian youth thought he had found Emmanuel Macron.

After this rather successful entry of the candidate of the Party Universe, other candidates to the example of Maurice Kamto of the MRC have also drained huge crowds during their crossings in the four corners of the country. We will remember among other things the meeting organized on the 30th. September in Yaounde at the esplanade of the Ahmadou Ahidjo stadium in the absence of the head of state then to the conquest of the north. The so-called door-to-door approach advocated by the Akere Muna FPD and many others has allowed these candidates to promote the outreach campaign. On the other hand, the meetings of the prophet and churchman Ndifor Franklin have brought a touch of gospel, worthy of the evangelical cruises while the gigantic bus of Serge Espoir Matomba hit in the colors of his party the PURS (United People for the Social Renovation) gave an American touch to this presidential campaign. Thanks to the remarkable involvement and dedication of the various candidates, the Cameroonian people and their youth in particular have resumed their taste for politics. Hence the regret of several young people for neglecting registration on the electoral lists.

                 THE ABANDONED ANGLOPHONE REGIONS

The English-speaking regions of the North West and South West, which have been suffering for two years from a crisis fueled by a separatist movement, have been wronged during this presidential election. The ruling party, the RDPC and some allied parties, despite the climate of insecurity reign organized some meetings especially in the North West.

Ditto for the SDF Joshua Osih who made some appearances in the South West. The other opposition candidates, who nevertheless constantly evoked in their political programs crisis-solving solutions in the English-speaking regions, were unable to commune with the electoral of that part of the country, citing insecurity and the massive exodus of people who have emptied these areas. The abandonment of this part of the country during the campaign despite the strong deployment of law enforcement, was also felt by the low participation rate in the North West is 5.36% and in the South West 15%.

DIASPORA ACTIVE ON SOCIAL NETWORKS BUT ABSENT IN URNS

Social networks weighed their weight during these elections before, during and after the election campaign. Channel operated by many candidates to meet the young electorate, the canvas has also been a fertile ground for debate, exchange of opinions and rants. The Cameroonian diaspora has been very active and involved in forums and discussion group’s whatsapp or facebook. She has shown great interest in the presidential campaign even to beat for her favorites. The young political analyst Wilfried Ekanga who resides in Germany and who for the circumstance was in Cameroon seduced more than one by his relevant analysis and his mastery of economic subjects. The “Prof Killer” he is one of the revelations of this presidential.

Although active on social networks, the Cameroonian diaspora has not mobilized strongly for the vote. A total of 13,076 people living abroad registered on the lists to take part in this election. In the Africa zone out of 14144 registered only 7. 339 voted. The situation is the same in the Asia zone where the participation rate is 33.93%.

THE ELECTORAL LITIGATION: A NEW EXERCISE IN AFRICA

Electoral litigation is undoubtedly the element that will have the most marked minds. Even the meeting of the Indomitable Lions against Malawi of October 16, 2018 counting for the CAN 2019, failed to divert the attention of Cameroonians from this political exercise broadcast live on the state channel CRTV. The electoral dispute which aimed to verify the regularity of the facts and the validity of the results of this election, has turned into a legal show unchaining passions and arousing admiration for the profession of lawyer. From the beginning, the diffusion of these debates which were to last three days mobilized on CRTV Web 16,000 people. A number that has increased over the course of the days. With the electoral dispute, Cameroonians have also discovered a new passion for the law. The lawyers by relevant analyzes have given birth to the country of football king a new passion for the law. Moreover, through the live broadcast of electoral disputes, without cuts or off sequences, Cameroon has given a real lesson of democracy to the African continent.

WITHIN THE OPPOSITION THE POWER HAS CHANGED HAND

The results of the presidential elections in Cameroon have given rise to the arrival of new political figures in the opposition. Ranked second with 14.23% of the votes, Maurice Kamto, the MRC candidate is positioned as the new leader of the Cameroonian opposition who for more than 20 years has been dominated by the Social Democratic Front (SDF). Candidate invested under the banner of the SDF, Joshua Osih ranks fourth with 3.35% of the vote. Unable to maintain its position as leader of the opposition, the party created by Ni John Fru Ndi was preceded by the MRC and UNIVERS whose candidates Maurice Kamto and Cabral Libii are now positioned as the new bosses of the opposition. With 23 mayors, 18 deputies and 07 senators the SDF continues to dominate the geographical map of the Cameroonian opposition, but the upcoming legislative and communal are crucial for the future and everything could well switch.

The 2018 presidential election is now a thing of the past. The next is scheduled for 2025. New elections are already on the electoral calendar. For many Cameroonians, things will never be the same again. Beyond the drifts with tribal characters that have somewhat agitated the post-electoral social climate peace so dear to Cameroon has been preserved. Youth on the other hand, previously withdrawn and spectator of the political game has become aware of the major role it can play to influence in its own way the destiny of the nation.

AFRIC Editorial Article

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