The Governor of the South West Region, Bernard Okalia Bilai intends to visit Cameroonian refugees who have fled into Nigeria as a result of the long drawn conflict in the Anglophone regions, Cameroon’s Consul General in Calabar Patrice Onono has revealed.
Mr Onono visited, Prof Ben Ayade, the Governor of Nigeria’s Cross River State- where most of the Cameroonian refugees are settled- to inform him of the intended visit.
Governor Ayade expressed delight at what he termed the improving situation in Cameroon after holding discussions with the Cameroonian delegation.
“I am happy to hear that your country is making efforts for peace to return to those two major provinces. The international view about what is happening in Cameroon is not good for the black man,” Governor Ayade is quoted by The Punch newspaper.
“It is our duty and responsibility to actively provide a shoulder for your refugees, your own citizens who are here to find comfort.”
It is however not clear what Governor Okalia Bilai is going to tell the refugees whose villages and properties have been burnt down as a result of fighting between government forces and separatist fighters. No Cameroonian authority has publicly visited the refugees in Nigeria since the outbreak of the crisis though delegates at the Major National Dialogue last year resolved for a swift return of the refugees to Cameroon.
The government of Cameroon and the United Nations Development Fund have set up a recovery plan to reconstruct part of the Anglophone regions ravaged by the war.