According to several analysts, President Paul Biya’s intention to make Cameroon a heaven of peace is deteriorating with time.
The Cameroonian head of state, Paul Biya, promised in his very first speech on 6 November 1982 to maintain the security and unity of the state. However, between 1982 and 2022, i.e. 40 years, several crises have put this construction to the test. These include cross-border insecurity; attacks by highway robbers; banditry by armed gangs; maritime piracy; kidnappings followed by ransom demands, terrorism and the Anglophone crisis.
To counteract this evil, the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, Paul Biya, has put in place a strong mechanism.
In particular, he has allocated one of the largest budgets to the ministry in charge of defence. In the same vein, he has instructed the creation of schools that train the military elite. In addition to the EMIA, the Ecole supérieure internationale de la guerre (ESIG), the Ecole internationale des forces de sécurité (Eiforces) and the Ecole nationale d’administration pénitentiaire (ENAP).
In February 2000, a decree of the Head of State created the Operational Command to fight against serious crime in Douala. Brigadier General Phillipe Mpay was placed at the head of this force.
To give more resistance against Boko Haram, the Rapid Intervention Battalion (BIR) was created in 1999. It is an elite unit deployed in high-risk areas. During the 2008 hunger crisis, the black-clad men were first seen in large numbers in the city of Yaoundé.
Cameroon’s defence and security forces played a remarkable role on 6 April 1984, preventing a coup d’état planned by a faction of the presidential guard. Their deployment was also instrumental in containing the demonstrations of the Braise years (1991). In both 1984 and 1990, summary executions were reported.
The areas most affected by the security crises are the north, with the presence of ”coupeurs de route” and the terrorist sect Boko Haram since 2014. The coupeurs de route existed long before. The populations of the North have thus been exposed to rampant insecurity for years. Not to mention the kidnappings with the corollary of ransom demands. The department of Mayo-Louti in the Far North is not recommended because of military operations, the risk of terrorism and the risk of kidnapping. Despite the strong military deployment, the terrorist presence remains, resulting in new deaths on a daily basis.
In Eastern Cameroon, as in the North, cross-border insecurity is gaining ground. This phenomenon in the Rising Sun region is due to armed movements from the Central African Republic. The Eastern region serves as a rear base for certain Central African rebel movements. Cameroon, which is considered the entry and exit point (Chad and CAR) for the Central African sub-region, is struggling to contain insecurity.
Flaws are also cited in the Anglophone crisis zones. Several elements of the defence forces have fallen in the North-West and South-West regions. Even the Rapid Intervention Battalion (BIR), deployed in these areas, is unable to contain the security crisis.