Intensifying Battle Against Terrorism

Persistent calls by President Paul Biya for global support to exterminate terrorist activities caused by groups like the Boko Haram sect have certainly been yielding results this far given the reduction of their atrocities.


Yet, no one can afford to slow down the momentum because each life lost must not leave any responsible government indifferent. Consequently, the Head of State remained steadfast in his plea for the international community to take full measure of the problems at stake and offer the necessary efforts and support to countries affected so that civilised societies can enjoy deserved freedoms and liberties.

Addressing the Diplomatic Corps in Yaounde on 6 January 2017 during the traditional New Year wishes ceremony at the Unity Palace, Mr Biya made a succinct analysis of the routes of extremism, appreciated the role of the international powers beginning with the United Nations Organisation and the humanitarian bodies that have equally been at the forefront to cater for victims of such wanton crimes by terrorists.

Even though Cameroon has succeeded to stop cases of hostage-taking, reduced the number of suicide explosions and considerably weakened the fire power of Boko Haram extremists in parts of the Far North Region, the Head of State still recalled the need to intensify efforts to ensure that the jihadist movements do not constitute a constant menace to world peace.

Insecurity generated by such evil forces has been a source of economic instability to many countries and as a result posed a real threat to the environment. Since no viable development can take place under insecurity, countries have had to divert vital resources to fight hoodlums who seek to destabilise and threaten peace and freedoms that the people deserve. The situation has also led to some countries or localities being deprived of human resources either through fright or massacres that keep the populations out of the economic mainstream.

Thus, the Head of State pointed out to the diplomats accredited to Yaounde that: “Regarding security, public opinion is showing grave concern about the persistence or even heightening of tensions, notably in the Middle East and in Africa.”  While expressing the ardent desire to see an end to the ongoing war in Syria, Mr Biya could not fail to draw attention to the consequences of the complexities involved in the conflicts. Terrorist attacks in Europe, United States of America, Turkey and of course, quite close to us, in some African countries have often been traced to the Islamic State, IS.

As the world eagerly awaits the destruction of the IS, the Head of State, in his usual wise and advisory approach to issues, keeps thinking that no one should take the dislocation of the IS for granted. Divergence in religious, political and economic interests have often led to radical attitudes adopted by certain factions of society thereby breeding hysteric movements that degenerate into bridled conflicts.

This is probably why the Head of State noted that there was need for international solidarity against such extremism accompanied by efforts to ensure that people should not be lured by such groups. “This possibility will require the adoption of a long-term strategy to combat terrorism by all countries facing this scourge,” the Head of State insisted.   

Cameroon has increased development initiatives in areas where youth could be vulnerable to negative attractions by terrorist groups. Since President Biya declared war against Boko Haram on 17 May 2014, there has been a steady drop in attacks on the country by the sect. Support from foreign partners like United Nations organization, some big powers, notably the United States of America, France, the United Kingdom, China, Russia, Japan and Germany, has been key to the successes recorded.

The President in his message to diplomats on Friday 6 January dutifully acknowledged such contribution, as in the past. He has not only taken his message of a global coalition to stop the sect across the continent, but equally spearheaded several international meetings in Cameroon. Hopefully, such an intensification of combat strategies against the sect could soon make its terrorist activities a forgotten story.

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