Cameroon to Hold Elections in October

The Cameroonian government has announced that presidential elections will take place on October 9. Incumbent President Paul Biya is almost certain to win:

He would face a divided and weak opposition that has not been able to challenge him in the last two elections.

Biya’s ruling party, the CPDM, plans to hold a congress on September 15-16, when it is expected to name him as its candidate.

The real question is what happens after Biya, currently 78, leaves power. Ajong Mbapndah L has a fairly grim take:

Beyond the brouhaha about the 2011 elections looms the spectre of the post Biya era. With a balance sheet that is largely below expectations at the onset of his accession to power in 1982, many Cameroonians long and hope for someone else to pilot state affairs. For those who have fed fat from the regime, the prospects of a post-Biya era are something to be dreaded. What happens when President Biya and his ruling CPDM are no longer there to serve as cover for criminal activities ranging from flagrant human rights abuses to looting the public treasury with impunity?

Even within the ranks of his ruling CPDM, there have been reports of vicious off camera struggles of eminent presidential associates to position themselves as heirs to the throne. Former Ministers are languishing in jail today like Atangana Mebara former Secretary General to the Presidency, Olanguena Owono, former Minister of Public Health and Polycarp Abah Abah former Minister of Economy and Finance. All are said be victims of the power games of succession. Officially arrested for corruption, the real reason for their incarceration in the dreaded Kondengui maximum security prison was their allegiance to the G11 group exploring options for the post-Biya era. With the wear and tear of age, the growing intolerance of leading world powers for sit-tight leaders and the desire for a graceful exit which avoids the humiliation suffered by Ben Ali in Tunisia, Mubarak in Egypt and Laurent Gbagbo in Ivory Coast, it is hard to say what Biya may have in store for Cameroonians.

Cameroon saw a few protests against Biya this year, and more serious protests in 2008.

7 thoughts on “Cameroon to Hold Elections in October

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  5. President Paul Biya did a very great job at the head of our country since he came to power with a good balance sheet today. Cameroon was managed peacefully before President Paul Biya and after him someone else will take over power and Cameroon will keep on living. It is normal that when someone is in power there should be questioning on the period after he leaves power, whether he managed poorly or did well.

  6. One thing you should bear in mind is that a country can never lack a leader and I don’t see why it should be different in Cameroon. After president Paul Biya, some other person will take over power.

  7. President Paul Biya’s balance sheet cannot be qualified as being below expectations as you say. Since he came into power he has done a great job to give Cameroonians a better living and he covered all the sectors of the economy. There was a president before President Paul Biya and when he will leave power, there will be another president to lead the destiny of Cameroonians our country cannot lack a leader, so stop speaking as if after President Paul Biya, Cameroon will come to an end. The work he has done will enable someone else to take over the lead without any difficulties.

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