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Buea: To avert October 1 surprises; Governor shuts border, bans inter-city movements

Bernard Okalia Bilai Governor of the South West region ©All rights reserved

Bernard Okalia Bilai, Governor of the South West region has prohibited intercity transportation and ordered the closure of the region’s border with Nigeria.

The order many predict is in response to calls by activists for protests on October 1, to demand more rights for the country’s English-speaking minority.

Going by Reuters, the Governor’s move represents an escalation in a crackdown on months of protest spurred by complaints about political and economic discrimination in the Anglophone regions of the predominantly Francophone country.

According to the order signed yesterday September 28, the region’s border with Nigeria border would be closed from 9 p.m. (2000 GMT) Friday until 7 a.m. Monday “following persistent threats of destabilisation through manipulation by individuals acting from outside the national territory.”

The order also banned inter-city transportation, gatherings of more than four people in public locations and all port activity during that same period.

In a statement on Thursday, a U.N. spokesman said Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was deeply concerned about tensions ahead of Sunday’s acclaimed demonstrations.

The UN chief urged Cameroon authorities to promote measures of national reconciliation aimed at finding a durable solution to the Anglophone crisis.



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