The audience at the Yaounde military court was shell-shocked on Friday when the prosecuting magistrate requested the court to slam a death sentence on Mancho Bibixy and seven other anglophones in the case between them and the State.
For over three hours, a team of close to ten lawyers of the civil party- three anglophones included- for three-and-a-half hours tore into the anglophone detainees with their various « evidences » to prove their case.
Barrister Achu Julius who dismissed the notion of Anglophone or Francophone, stressing all are Cameroonians. He buttressed his point from a history by tracing the Cameroons as far back as 1884 before telling the accused they were ignorant of what they are fighting for.
« Most of you were not even born when the plebiscite took place (in 1961) apart from my learned colleague on the other side (Barrister Ben Muna, lead counsel of the defence team), so stop all this your Ambazonia nonsense, » he defiantly told the accused before warning them to leave politics to politicians.
« I hate to hear the word Anglophone or Francophone, this is not a historical nor political matter,» he said while telling the detainees that a country is constructed by the will of the people and not the constitution.
Quoting section 237 of the Cameroon Penal code which provides a ten to 20 years imprisonment for depradation by band, and which could even extend to a death sentence, Barrister Achu Julius prayed the court to apply the law because the facts, according to him are there for all to see.
Facts which he took time to outline as he pointed that the accused have messed up themselves by inciting the crowd to revolt against the State. The Government Delegate of the Bamenda City Council would have been dead by now if security forces did not intervene to rescue him from the crowd incited by Mancho Bibixy, Barrister Achu said.
On each count, he quoted the punishment set aside by the law which he prayed the court to strictly apply so as to serve a lesson to others.
He told the court to pass a judgement equal to the damage their acts have inflicted on the population of the two affetected regions and this can only be done through a heavy sentence.
After the three-hour presentation from the civil party, the case was adjourned to April 24 at the request of the defence counsel who asked for more time to prepare their case.