Interviewed by NFOR Hanson NCHANJI
Bamenda, Cameroon-February 23, 2018-12:35PM Local Time (Cameroon News Agency) One of the most vibrant and outspoken member of the Cameroon Peoples Democratic Movement, CPDM ruling party in the North West region, Dr Nick Ngwanyam has told Cameroon News Agency that old guards vying for seats at the Senate will be humiliated this time because the Youths have woken up from slumber and are now ready to take their rightful place. The Medical Doctor cum Politician was speaking in an Exclusive interview with CNA’s NFOR Hanson NCHANJI, at the former’s Academic Institute, Saint Louis in Mile 3 Nkwen Bamenda, where he reiterated that the time for the youths to lead is now and not tomorrow.
CNA: Good day Dr Nick, I am pleased to receive this warm welcome at the time when your institution is currently given out exams to students and your very busy schedule going in and out of the Laboratory. That said I want to find out, militants of the the CPDM in the North West region have been vibrating to the rhythms of the upcoming Senatorial election on March 25, you have also been seen with files. What is your take on the elections this year; does it promise fireworks or normal business as usual?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: Thank you very much, this year we have a lot of elections, the Senatorial is just one of them, you know there will be Council, Parliamentary and along the line Presidential and each election has got its character and characteristics.
Everybody had to wake up with this Senatorial election but you know it is one of the easiest elections because the electorate is not very large and you can easily organize it. So I had to come out with strategies for this election, how useful will it be to the country, what am I going to get out of it as a person and in what context are these elections taking place. You know we are all aware of the fact that there is this Anglophone problem and there is actually no peace in the two English speaking regions. What would have logically happen for any election to hold would have been the well drum up dialogue for peace to take its rightful place. This morning is a ghost town because people are not happy with the SDF Convention; you know the people are putting them to task. So what is going on in this country now is not only about the Anglophone problem, the Francophone,SDF, CPDM, there is a general malaise and we need to actually be addressing our problems so that we can have peace which is at stake.
That said, when I look at the whole picture, just not participating in elections itself is not bringing a solution, it might not be the best but be doing something while waiting for what you want. Five years ago during the first elections, four lists were sent to Yaoundé from the North West region and I was head of one list, I come from Donga Mantung.
Two of the four lists came from Mezam and you know the mentality about Mezam, it is mindset that if it is not from Mezam then it isn’t good and that everyone is an idiot. I wanted to challenge the status quo and it went down to Yaoundé and due to in house politics, I was pushed to the wall. Someone said that politics is a dirty game and I learned my lessons as well.
I have defined what politics is based on what his Eminence Christian Cardinal TUMI has taught me. We have our own understanding of politics in the third world and there is the way the world also understands politics. But if you ask me, Ngwanyam why are you interested in politics and how are you going to do to succeed. If you ask me I will tell you that I want to bring real politics in Cameroon, a clean atmosphere.We have to realize that God did not create dirty politics, there is nothing that God created that is bad but there is a way we can go about it. Let me explain, a knife is not a bad thing, but you can use to kill. Everything has got two sides. So, you see I want to create that type of political atmosphere as taught by Christian Cardinal TUMI, that of bringing politics closer to God or bring God into politics. A lot of people do not believe in God. You know God is love, truth, infinite, life, soul, spirit, principle, intelligence and a lot more. So what I’m saying is that I’m going to try to create politics where God is at center, where truth prevail, where we respect life and where we work on principles, where we tap on infinite intelligence.
CNA: Do you think that this can exist and even practiced within our context, remember five years ago, things were the way you described earlier. Is Cameroon a fertile ground for Godly politics?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam : Yeah, I am telling you this because you do not see it now but you will see it happen. It’s a new doctrine but that will happen. If you grow a coconut, you don’t expect to harvest it now, no it will take some time. If God says plant a coconut, go ahead and do that and don’t ask when it’s going to have fruits. If Martin Luther , Mother Theresa, Mandela, Gandhi had asked those kinds of questions, we will not be where we are today, so when you have such ideas, just go ahead the way God wants.
We have Anglophone problems today because there have been no love, no truth in what we do. If you just ask me Ngwanyam, how are we going to solve these issues and I will tell you we need love, truth, working on principles and tap into infinite intelligence, it will be easy, very easy.
CNA: Five years ago, you were a list leader for the Senatorial, this year you are…
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: A King maker
CNA: A King maker, let’s put it that way, you are encouraging the participation of youths, that they should be elected and also appointed. How far can this go? Remember this adage that old wine taste so well.
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: Now people who are not clean are very crafty and they will bring an adage which suits their thinking. Even if you have someone who is very crocked, he will go into the bible and bring out a text to fit his context. When you say things out of context, it might look like they are true which is not the case today. Let’s put it this way, five years ago I was the list leader but this year, I decided not to participate as a person on the list but technically I sat down and put together a couple of young people and I’m like the backbone, I call myself the King maker and in the whole thing I put out a philosophy there that we challenge the status quo, we are in the Android generation.
There is this thing people say youths are leaders of tomorrow, that thing is bullshit! when will tomorrow come? Today is the tomorrow that we were talking about yesterday, Africa is not developing because of this tomorrow mentality. Youths are taking over today and not tomorrow therefore I want to say that youths are taking over, the youths and women have to go to the Senate because they have a different mindset, different problems and they see things differently and therefore we have to give them the chance to change things, many of those old men spend their time at the Senate doing nothing, they spend good time in hotels and so on and couldn’t care about the problems that youths are facing.
CNA: So are you chasing them out?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam- I am chasing all of them out
CNA –What strategy are you using to do that, we know that an old rat knows all the outlets in a house?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam- The first is education and advocacy, chasing them out is not physical, it is spiritual, mental and intellectual. You fight evil with good; you fight evil by making sure you are at the table and bringing new ideologies. If I am talking about bringing the young to replace the old ones, and the young do not present themselves to be candidates at the Senate then you cannot change it. So while talking be doing. We have put up a list there which is at the level of Central Committee of the CPDM full of youths and women and I guarantee you that we will have 2, 3 or 4 out of the 7 who will be elected because we put the old people to task, we challenged them to show us what they have done in their five years term, they have nothing. In the beginning they went ahead and brought some few Bikes for FCFA 150, 000 VAT exclusive and went ahead and shared while we were clapping they went and started sleeping. I challenge you to show me what they have done either as individual or group of Senators especially within this Anglophone problem tearing the country apart. They were just interested in earning the money and having a good time and they want to go back and continue having lunch, NO I am telling them that free lunch is over.
CNA: Who are those dons on your list?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: From the North West region four lists went to Yaoundé. My list is Gods list and that is the list that will win, even though I am not the list leader but people know that I am the backbone.
CNA: Led by Who?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: No no do not worry about that, they work as a college.
CNA: You speak as if you do not want to unveil the names, are you afraid?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: It is Dr Peter Ndungwi who is the list leader but we are trying to demystify it. Even if we have one Senator, he belongs to the youths, the group, an icon of the internet generation, the computer age and a new way of doing things,we are going to bring more youths on board and give the CDPM a progressive outlook led by youths. Youths are no longer going to sit behind and give people water and food to eat. The President gave youths computers and he has been saying youths do something and be proactive. There is no turning back. The CPDM is not going to be the same again and the beautiful thing is, it is starting in Bamenda and Dr Ngwanyam is at the head.
CNA: Will your campaign for youths taking over offices end only at the level of the Senate?
Dr Nick Ngwanyam: Very good question, I want to say that there are other elections coming up and we pray that by then peace will return, for those of us in the North West, we are already putting in our strategies, nobody is going to contest if he or she is above 50. We want to end up with Mayors that are very young, councils that are very young and if you are above 50, forget it. We are also looking at the Parliamentary elections and we want to say that we are already prepared.
CNA: Thank you Dr Ngwanyam for your time.
Dr Nick Ngwanyam : You are welcome and I am always available, wait for the results of the elections and see what I am talking about.
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