'Ideology of greed' prevails in Cameroon
CAMEROON'S POLITICAL IDEOLOGY is rooted in greed, the Catholic Archbishop for Bamenda affirmed in an address to college students last month.
Archbishop Cornelius Fontem Esua says the messy political atmosphere in the country founded on the “chop a chop” (bribery) premise has plunged ordinary citizens into untold hardship where they are abandoned to the mercy of God.
The Archbishop made his remarks to a gathering of students and their parents at Sacred Heart College, SAHECO, Mankon, during his pastoral visit to the college. Cameroon had just emerged from celebrations that marked her golden jubilee of independence and that of the armed forces.
“The lack of 'common good' by the leaders is the source of all problems in the country,” said the Archbishop. “This philosophy, which the French call ‘Politique de la mangeoir’ leads us to do just what we want and sacrifice everything else that is for public interest as long as we can eat. The Apostle Paul describes such people as those whose God is their stomachs,” he added.
“Sometimes it is a pity, really a shame to all of us when we see that people who have ruled us today, who had put others in prison are in prison themselves. And there are still many out who should follow them,” he quipped, alluding to the recent arrest and detention of former Prime Minister Ephraim Inoni and Territorial Administration and Decentralization Minister Marafara Hamidou Yaya on charges of alleged embezzlement in the Albatross scandal.
The Archbishop’s remarks were intended to draw the attention of the students, leaders of tomorrow’s Cameroon, to the ills and dangers of greed and power mongering. He decried the state of affairs in the country where “falsehood and dishonesty”, coupled with “social injustice, bribery and corruption,” stifle the legitimate rights of many people.
“It is in that society that we are called to be witnesses as Christians and that vocation means to be honest, truthful and to respect the rights of others just as we want them to respect ours,” he noted.
His Grace Esua underscored the issue of permissiveness of moral depravity in Cameroon's society, especially among youths, a trend he claims must be checked in order to make Cameroon a better place tomorrow.
Catholic education, which aims to provide not just academic excellence but also moral and spiritual excellence, the archbishop said, is one of the surest means to achieve the much needed change.
“That is what distinguishes your institution as a Catholic school from all other institutions because as the saying goes ‘the heart of education is the education of the heart’,” said Esua.