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Cameroon: Patrick Ekema Esunge, biography of a ‘fallen warrior’

The mortal remains of the deceased mayor of Buea Patrick Ekema Esunge will be laid today in his home town after an official funeral ceremony.

Since yesterday, Buea has been at a standstill as residents troop in at the Buea council esplanade to pay their last respects to the ‘Nyamoto Kpwatolo’ (Great Warrior) who die on October 27 in Douala.

But who was Patrick Ekema Esunge, the man who laid his life to fight against separatist activities in Buea? Below is a full biography of the man.

BIRTH

Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge was born on the 26th of September, 1976 to Esunge John Matute (of blessed memory) from Small Soppo Woteke and Julie Mojoko Wotany of Vasingi-Buea Town.

EDUCATION

Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge attended Government Primary School Buea Town where he obtained his First School Leaving Certificate (FSLC) and would later move to Bilingual Grammar School Molyko- Buea and obtained the GCE Ordinary Level and Advanced Level Certificates respectively.

He then gained admission in the University of Buea, where he obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in History, a Masters Degree in Political Science and at the time of his death, he was a PhD student in the University of Yaounde 1.

PROFESSIONAL (WORK) LIFE

Mayor Ekema was a self-made person. He started his journey by supplying sand and firewood. Later, he gained employment in the University of Buea and would later climb the ladder of success, by occupying the position of Faculty Officer in the Faculty of Education, a position he occupied till his brilliant election as Mayor of Buea in 2013.  He was Board Chairman of the Buea Regional Hospital Regional Management Committee, Board Member of CAMWATER, and member of the National Decentralization Council, amongst others.

TRADITIONAL HONOURS

The streams of awards conferred on Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge nationwide after taking over the command baton of the Buea Council in 2013, were enormous. Traditional authorities of the South Region of Cameroon recognized the Mayor of Buea, Ekema Patrick Esunge on July 27th 2019, not only as a son of the land, but a notable of high honor of the South Chiefs Conference, which earned him the title “Nyamoto Kpwatolo”, translated as “The Great Warrior”.

Before then, on October 11th, 2016, the Manyu Youth Cultural and Development Association led by its National President, Ako Julius Ndip, gave the young and dynamic Mayor the title: “The Light, the Honour of Manyu Youth.” The award according to the cultural group was motivated by the far-reaching development strides and empathy Mayor Ekema Patrick exhibited towards humanity.

The development-driven Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge, again sometime in 2015 during the Guardian Post Newspaper awards in Azam Hotel Bamenda, alongside wife Catherine Mosoke epse  Ekema, was admitted into the Northwest notables. The Northwest Fons performed scary rituals to admit Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge into the class of notables of the North West region, cladding him and his wife in the famous regalia of the region.

Charity they say begins at home, reasons why in his home village, Wonjoku, in Buea Subdivision, Mayor Ekema Patrick was awarded the title “Janea”, meaning “one who brings good things for his people” , for his best leadership skills and the goodies he  brought to his kindred and environs.

AWARDS

Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge, in the course of his leadership, received groundbreaking awards in recognition of his hard work and contribution towards the development and stability of Cameroon. Mayor Ekema emerged as best Southwest Mayor for 2018 during the maiden edition of the “Afrik Inform Awards” show on Saturday June 29th, 2019, at MONT Febe Hotel, Yaoundé.

He was equally awarded a Special award named “Architect of Peace and Social Stability in Cameroon”.

The award, according to the jury panel, was in recognition of his development strides in the Buea Municipality; providing assistance to educational, health, social and economic plights of the population.

His role in pushing for a solution in the ongoing sociopolitical crisis in the Northwest and southwest regions in general and Buea in particular, catapulted the Mayor to bag home the award of “Architect of Peace and Social Stability in Cameroon”.

In addition, on the 18th of April 2019, during the “New Year Wishes” ceremony organized by Buea Council’s staff, the Hercules Of Our Time, Mayor Ekema Patrick Esunge, was significantly awarded as The Guardian Post Newspaper 2018 Man of the Year, for single-handedly staging a fearless fight against Non State Armed Groups in the Southwest Regional Capital Buea.

The ceremony which brought together Council staff, clergy, members of the administration, Honorable Councilors, security officials, Transporters’ syndicates, economic operators, stake holders and friends of the Council, also witnessed the Award of Excellence to Mayor Ekema Patrick by staff representatives.

The late emblematic Mayor of Buea through his hard work in ensuring peace and stability reigns in Cameroon and Buea in particular, continued to attract recognition from local, national as well as international organizations.

Mayor Ekema Patrick was on July 17th, 2019 on the occasion of the 2018 Administrative, Management and Stores Management Account Session of the Buea Council, handed an Honorary Award (Fleche Press Award) by the Pan-African Press with headquarters in Brazzaville, Congo.

The award as explained by Mr. Harve’ Villaro Kibong, is as a result of the mayor’s persistent fight in alleviating poverty and unemployment not leaving out his unmatched spirit of patriotism.

For the remarkable service he rendered to reduce human suffering in various domains, Mayor Ekema Patrick amongst other personalities was awarded by the President of the Cameroon Red Cross, William Eteki Mboma in kumba.

The late Mayor was also a laureate for the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016 as the Most Peformant Mayor.

Other most outstanding awards granted to Buea’s pride include:

-The Guardian Post Newspaper Best Mayor of the Year 2014 award

-The Scoop Newspaper Best Mayor Award

– The Mosaiques International award in Yaoundé

-The Most Persecuted Politician of the Year Award 2015 by the Guardian Post Newspaper.

POLITICAL LIFE

From a very tender age, Mayor Ekema Patrick engaged in politics, where he militated in the ruling party, the CPDM.

He started as Disputes Officer of the then Vasingi Branch of the YCPDM Sub-Section, Secretary, Vice President of the YCPDM Fako III Section, Assistant Secretary CPDM Fako III and the Section Secretary Fako III CPDM.

He contested for the presidency of the CPDM Fako III section in 2015, unfortunately; it ended in a fiasco.

As a CPDM militant, he became a Councillor and First Deputy Mayor of Buea in 2007.

In June 2013, Mayor Ekema Patrick replaced Senator Mbella Moki Charles as Mayor of Buea, due to the latter’s election into the senate.

Later in the same hear, Mayor Ekema was head of the CPDM list that won the Municipal Elections and later elected as Mayor of the Chief Town of the South West Region, Buea, a position he held till his demise on the 27th of October 2019.

SOCIAL LIFE

Mayor Ekema Patrick was the brain behind the coming into light of many socio-cultural groups, such as “MOVAYA” which is today “Ewongowe”, “Liyenge Li Panya”.

He was founder of the Fako Sustainable Network (FASUNET). He also belonged and was patron to several of such groups in and out of Buea. He was a member of the “Nganya” and “Marley” societies. He died as Vice President of the Marley society.

He also belonged to the Obasinjom and Efokwe? Society where he was conferred the title “Sessekou”. He was grand notable of the Sawas of Littoral and South Regions of Cameroon.

FAMILY LIFE

Mayor Ekema was married to Catherine Etombi Mosoke with whom they have five children namely Paola, Brandon, Limunga, Joel and Janea.

He lives behind his mother, his wife, five children, his brothers and sisters, relatives, friends, and the entire Buea population of Buea in particular and Cameroon as a whole to mourn him.

May his soul find rest in God’s bosom.


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