Party Politics and Conflicting Views of Politicians on British Southern Cameroons Independence, 1922 – 1961
Keywords:Southern Cameroons, party Politics, conflicting views, independence
This paper examines party politics in British Southern Cameroons from inception in 1922 to reunification and independence in 1961. It focuses on the ideologies and strategies of politicians, chiefs, pressure groups and political parties, as well as the inescapable role of the British and the United Nations towards the plebiscite and eventual reunification with the independent Republic of Cameroon. The paper argues that, British Southern Cameroons politicians espoused conflicting views on the political future of their territory, initially fighting for the territory’s independence as a separate political entity against association with Nigeria and reunification with French Cameroon, before being compelled by the debates at the Mamfe Conference in August 1959 to bring to the forefront their conflicting opinions on secession, association and reunification. Paradoxically, the popular option of secession and independence as a separate political entity was rejected by the United Nations. The paper concludes that despite British might and manoeuvres as a colonial master to yoke British Southern Cameroons to Nigeria, Southern Cameroonians overwhelmingly voted through a United Nations organised plebiscite on 11 February 1961 to gain independence by establishing a federation and reunifying with the then French-speaking Republic of Cameroon on 1 October 1961.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Emmanuel Yenkong Sobseh
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