Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Ntumbaw, Njirong Palaver Ending Four Decades Conflict in Ndu; Mbaw Plain(Mbawrong) Belongs to Njirong! Point

Ntumbaw Sanctioned for orchestrating raids and attacks on the Njirongs in multiple forms claiming rights of ownership over the juicy Mbawrong plain in Ndu Sub-Division, Donga-Mantung. The centre of the saga dating over Four decades and coming from a simple hand of favor onto a particular village to farm and help her famished population, paying back royalties to owners and allegiance, turns out after some decades with due devotion to accord, as a palaver over who is the rightful owner since the CDC today had to extend her tentacles to this area of the country. Reasons for want of compensation from the said cooperation, the sales of land whose values had risen and the desire for a Lion share, Ntumbaw Village called to order on several occasions by a series of Sub and Prefectoral Orders has been on the aggression of the Njirongs over right of ownership and the Njirongs on the defensive to protect valuables. Recently after all orchestrated moves of incitement, by Politicians and subjects from either village (we prefer holding the names), Ndu Sub-Division almost jumped into another Genocide like that of the 90s that rendered a good number homeless and human lives watered down. The scenario recorded two deaths from either villages termed “final clash of ownership” drawing government attention, warranting the arrest of nine and several seating for last consensus over the matter to be trash once and for all by her SDO Mesape Ndodemo. Taking you to the round about and the crooks of the matter between Ntumbaw and Njirong Villages respectively based on eye witness accounts of early days transactions, documented evidence and consensus reached in 2004 grants any normal mind the right to authenticate all favors to the Credit of Njirong Village as rightful owners of the Mbaw-plain. As such several inviting calls appeal to government to visit documented evidences and witnesses still alive to pass a second and a final verdict that will reinstate absolute peace and supreme clemency right over the disputed Mbawrong plain by government. Minutes of the Deliberation of the land commission charged with the settlement of the land dispute between Ntumbaw and Njirong Villages at Mbawrong Ndu Sub-Division held on the 9th of June 2004 and the Publication by a living eye witness of the transaction Rev Dr Philemon Bugansa Nfor titled seeking truth, Peace and Unity on the issue of the land dispute between Ntumbaw and Njirong Villages below serves government the pain in her fact finding mission and resolution. INTRODUCTION; I wonder who decided that Bungansa is a Njirong not a Ntumbaw person. That 1 am a Njirong person is perfectly correct. My mother is the eldest sister to the Fon of Njirong; the late Fon's eldest child. That I am not a Ntumbaw person is a lie from the pit of hell. I was born in Ntumbaw, I grew up in Ntumbaw and I shall be buried at Ntumbaw. My father was born in Ntumbaw, grew up in Ntumbaw and will be buried there. The truth is that I am a classic embodiment of the un- dissolvable marriage between Ntumbaw and Njirong villages; marriage made in heaven which men have tried to dissolve. I wonder how many Ntumbaw people know that the Fon of Ntumbaw is a munjar of Njirong (his mother is from Njirong Village)! I wonder how many know that the Fon of Njirong is married from Ntumbaw and that the diary was paid at Fah Mawar! It is hard to list how many Njirong people are married to Ntumbaw people and vice versa. It is no puzzle that the Maya of Njirong governs from Ntumbaw, not on exile; not where she works but where she was born, grown and lives! There are not many Ntumbaw people who can shed the blood of Njirong people without being directly affected and vice versa. Only the end of the world shall dissolve the oneness of these two blessed villages. But before that time comes, we need to decide if we want to live in peace, unity and development or we want to live fighting, hating and destroying each other. The Bible says, "The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself. If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other" (Ga. 5:14-15). We have ignored this in the last forty years. I trust that time has come for us to stop giving the devil the opportunity to help us-destroy each other. I write this as a total and one hundred percent son of Ntumbaw & Njirong villages. It took me quite some thinking and praying to arrive at being at Mbaw on Thursday Ntala, October 18, 2012. I nursed some fear of increased negative talk against me. It has been sounded loud that Dr. Nfor is a Njirong person. Some have even gone as far as saying I told them I do not belong to Ntumbaw. Others have wondered aloud why I, a Pastor should be present for the application of the traditional rite of pouring libation. Actually I wish I was there to see and understand. Unfortunately, this was done at Mbaw in 2001 when I was studying in the United States of America. 1 wish to see the video that is claimed to carry my image at the occasion and see who it is in the village that bears my resemblance that much, because I find it hard to believe that the very reasonable people who are saying so are inventing the stories. I was indeed afraid but remembered that fear that should influence action should only be that which is true. Also, in spite of these fears I considered the need to bear witness to the truth sufficiently strong enough for me to be at Mbaw for the hearing of the administration of Donga/Mantung on this issue. I remembered that I am a blessed bearer of some truths that need not remain a secret. I am a blessed son of Ntumbaw and Njirong! I was there as a young boy around 1974 at the Njitang residence of the present Fon of Ntumbaw when my Grandfather, the Fon of Njirong invited his brother, the Fon of Ntumbaw, to come and receive a piece of land and cultivate rice so as to educate his children. It was a public invitation made to the hearing of all those who were there! *I was farming rice at Mbawrong in a plot not too far from that of the present Fon of Ntumbaw. *I was there when the Ntumbaw subjects moved from where they worked with the Njirong people, to a place they called "power come" and claimed it belonged to Ntumbaw. *I have been there following the conflict that resulted from the above action, not as closely as I would have wanted but very close since I returned to this country in 1996. *I have lived the audile of rejection when Njirong people were forced to carry corn to Sehn or Zerndzfung because they were not allowed to use any grinding mill in Ntumbaw. In fact my cousin and I had to buy a grinding mill and plant at Njirong to rescue the situation. How our economy can be so perturbed! WHY? By the way, who really losses when people are prevented from buying or grinding corn. You need to see the thriving of the new Njirong market! *I was privileged to be at Mbawrong in 2004 when the then Senior Divisional Officer for Donga/Mantung Division presided over the Mbawrong Land Commission hearing. I left the place with the impression that the two villages were actually at the point of reconciliation and especially when I understood that the decision of the Land Commission was not subject to appeal. Unfortunately, the decision instead gave rise to petitions, court cases and recently a near bloodbath if not for God's grace. *And now, thank God I was there at Mbawrong Government Primary School class six classrooms listening to all that went on and able to write down notes which i want to share with you. By the way, it was a pleasure for me to meet the SDO for the first time, contrary to those who carry it that Bungansa has been going to Nkambe to give bribes to administration on behalf of Njirong people to win cases. I have never met the judge who is said to have been induced in August 2012 to turn a criminal case into a land dispute case and throw it out of court. If these two villages are still there today it is clear indication that the God of peace is the Lord of Ntumbaw and Njirong twin villages. Whatever the case God knows that i love Ntumbaw and Njirong people and pray that the two walk hand in glove, work together and develop side by side. What follows are the notes of both my reflection and the Proceedings that I jotted down during the discussion in Mbaw on October 18, 2012. I share these with you because I have come to realize that the Njirong/Ntumbaw conflict has been enflamed by the cancer of ignorance. It is no pleasure of mine to sit and watch people die for lack of knowledge when I have the information that could save lives. I trust that this information I give you will inform your subsequent actions and reactions on this matter; -so that together we can build our twin villages for the glory of God and for our good and that of our descendants. AT MBAWRONG ON THE 18TH OF OCTOBER 2012 ON THE ISSUE OF THE LAND DISPUTE BETWEEN MBAWRONG AND NJIRONG CALLED BY THE DIVISIONAL LAND COMMISSION My reflections before the beginning of the program: I was first and foremost, touched by the anxiety I saw in the people. The gathering of the notables of the two villages reminded me of how intricately linked we are. Imagine the grandson of Fai war (actually a nephew); sitting as a notable of Njirong and Fai War himself sitting opposite to speak for Ntumbaw! How can anyone think of "winning" the other in this kind of an atmosphere? I wondered within me why this marriage has for so long been perturbed by the forces of deception. I could not lie!? asking myself the role, of the elites of both villages in this four decades old conflict. I wondered why tradition, politics, and legal interventions have all so far been incapable of producing the needed peace for our development. Surely, someone; somewhere is refusing the truth! Yet, God calls us to live in and for the truth; to sustain and uphold truth that sets men free and brings peace and progress. What are we looking for in the Ntumbaw/Njirong case? Are we looking for opportunities to exercise might; for land to cultivate; good neighborliness that can allow us exploit the land in oneness of mind, or are we looking for opportunities to win battles and celebrate no matter the outcome? Villages nowadays rely heavily on their external elites for development. Ntumbaw and Njirong are no exception. Surely these elites of both villages have contributed to development in the two villages. But I have observed over the years that most elites play hide and- attack or hide and inflame, sometimes sponsoring falsehood. When the proceedings started at about ll:50am the SDO called on the pastor present (me) for the opening prayer. It was a great honor. I prayed for the truth to prevail and set us free. My prayer was that God would bind any spirit of deception and display the truth so equivocally that no one would leave the hall with doubts. In 2004 I was only present as an observer. Today I was present as a servant of TRUTH and it was rather interesting that when the SDO quoted from his various sources, he made sure I cross examined the document for confirmation. I was excited when I looked round and saw Dr. Usman sitting behind me. I thought to myself, "We can talk after about what we both heard and observed." Unfortunately, the joy was short lived given that the SDO was strict with the roll call. He maintained what he had demanded in his invitation letter: the Fon and five notables including the president of the village development Association (for each village). He allowed the Fons of Sop and Chup and the representative of the Fon ofNtem to be there as observers only. I stayed in because I am a Pastor and he wanted a pastor around. The proceedings: The SDO introduced the subject matter as understanding the conflict between the two villages, especially the recent incidence that took place In August 2012 and bringing the matter to a close. He quoted Eccl. 3:1-8 to say that there is time for everything. He said there is time for a problem like this to die. He said there is a time to be silent and a time to speak. He said that the villages had been at war because they had not been at peace. Just living in suspicion, he said, is a state of peacelessness. "Enough is enough and we have to bring this conflict to an end, let the truth prevail and We live in peace because living in this peaceless situation is jeopardizing the future of your children", he said. He promised that peace will prevail in these villages. He gave the floor to the parties to bring up any submission that were new additions to. what was presented in 2004 when the Administration ruled on this matter. He explained that he was acting on instructions from his hierarchy after the August incident. He asked the Fons to speak. *The Fon of Njirong read his submission (see Appendix). He stated why he was laying claims to Mbawrong and concluded that he believed the present meeting was a follow up of the 2004 Commission whose decision the. Administration should implement. *The Fon of Ntumbaw got up to say that this Mbaw belonged to Him. "It is Mbaw Nswi Ntumbaw," he said and clarified that his boundary is with Nso people and Ntem people. He said he thought the Fon of Njirong is His brother and now he does not know what is wrong. He said the Fon of Njirong claimed that he (Fon of Ntumbaw) does not know anything. He reported that the Njirong Fon had said the government came here and said Mbaw belongs to the Fon of Rong. He said he is not happy that the present Fon is back stabbing him. He declared that he enthroned the Fon of Rong and on that day a son of Ntumbaw was crossing the Mantunmbaw River, fell inside and died and the mother even went away. He said he is not happy with the whole situation perpetuated by the Fon of Njirong. The SDO asked the Fon of Ntumbaw whether in giving the things to the Fon of Rong asking for land he was requesting to take possession of the land or he was asking to cultivate it and pay allegiance to Njirong. The Fon of Ntumbaw said he did not give anything to the Njirong people asking for land. The SDO was infuriated with this and reminded the Fons and their notables that he had the records of facts. He opened to the Gazzets which he said he brought from Buea (the Official records of British Cameroon that recognized the existing villages at the time). He called me, as pastor to come and see and attest to the fact that the official documents of the nation recognized Fon NGANJO as the Fon of Njirong and attest to the existence of Njirong as avillage. I saw it clearly written. Secondly he presented the 1970 Administrative Map of Mbumland from the Ministry of Territorial Administration that shows the geo-social structure of eachvillage. The map showed that the geographic coordinates of Ntumbaw village clearly excludes Mbawrong in her geography limits. The same document also shows that the officially known quarters of Ntumbaw village do not include Mbawrong or Mbaw Nswi Nlumbaw. Thirdly the SDO opened to the minutes of the 2004 Land Commission and read portions of it. It contained, among other things the confession of the Fon of Ntumbaw to the effect that he begged for land from the Fon of Njirong to cultivate rice. *The SDO stated that considering that what remains authentic in administration is what is written, not oral tradition; considering the judicial and administrative reports of his predecessor? on the Njirong/Ntumbaw conflicts and thirdly considering that this matter had been decided upon in 2004 and there is no new submission that should question the correctness of that decision, he concludes that the 2004 decision of the Land Commission stands and will be enforced strictly. Closure: The minutes of the 2004 LAND DISPUTE COMMISSION was re-read to the people in its entirety. The SDO then repeated that anyone who does not abide by this document is acting against the Law. That means those who are chipping the land and selling without the express permission of the Fon of Njirong are criminals who should go to prison. The SDO said there is a proverb in their dialect that "when you hold a cutlass you can either cut someone with it or you beat him with it." he explained that he can decide to apply the law and get those who have been violating the Land Commission Decision to go to prison for he knew them, or he could open up for dialogue. He asked if the two villages wanted him to apply the rule of law on defaulters or he should open up for dialogue The Fon of Njirong said Njirong has never been against dialogue as long as their ownership of the land is recognized. The Ntumbaw notables also called for dialogue. The SDO then said he would go for dialogue on the condition that those who have violated the Land Commission Decision and have extended or acquired land as well as those who have sold some without the blessings of the rightful owners of the land should bring their letters of apology to the Divisional Officer for Ndu Sub Division within three months, meaning by the 31st of December 2012. The DO will bring them to the custodian of the land (the Fan of Njirnng) to regularize their owncr.'hip. Anyone who docs not do so, he said, would face the force of the law. Secondly, he stated that the traditional rites on the land must be performed on the Njirong country Sunday and all those who cultivate Njirong land must bring their royalties to the Njirong people. At this point the Ntumbaw notables agitated on the bases that there was the pouring of libations on the land in 2001 in the presence of the then SDO. The SDO explained that: i). The libation program was organized by the DO and the Land Commission by the SDO. The decision of the SDO is that of an appealed case and thus supersedes that of the Divisional Officer. 2). Libation was in 2001 but did not even bring any peace thus the Land Commission was called in 2004. It is because what the DO did never worked that the SDO came in 2004 and settled it by law. A later decision always supersedes the earlier one. The SDO promised to report his decision to the State Council, the Magistrate and to Yaounde for strict implementation of the 2004 Land Commission Decision. Henceforth any violation of that Commission Decision will invite his wrath. He made his closing remarks and called on Rev. Dr. Philemon NFOR to do the closing prayer. Immediately after the prayer, the SDO and the Land Commission members left. The deliberations ended at i:55pm local time. HERE ARE THE CONCLUSIONS STATED IN THE LAND COMMISSION DECISION OF 2004: *That the piece of land in dispute between Ntumbaw and Njirong belongs to the Njirong people. *That occupants of pieces of land in the said disputed area shall continue to cultivate their farms and any other form nl development there in, but must pay allegiance to the Fon of Niirong as the undisputed custodian of that national land. *That no new farms shall be established without the Express authorization or benediction of the said custodian in connection with the existing land tenure laws enforce. MY CONCLUDING COMMENTS: * I prayed and still pray that this should be the beginning of a great time of peace, unity, togetherness and development of our two villages. All of us have the responsibility to make this happen. Be a peace maker. * It is my humble pled that as elites, nobles, learned men and women, people of good will of these two villages we should inform the younger ones of the truth, learn to submissively benefit from what is not ours and open up what is ours to others to benefit from us. * We should learn to share what God has given us as individuals and as villages. I was there when the pipe lines were dug at the beginning of the Ntumbaw water project, for the water to be extended to the Njirong village. Unfortunately. Some Ntumbaw persons dug a pit latrine on the pipe line and stopped the water from going to Njirong. The pipes had been bought. Hundreds of those pipes are still lying besides the Mfu house in Njirong and Njirong is yet to have water. What is wrong with Njirong drinking Ntumbaw water and Ntumbaw people cultivation of Njirong land? These are from God for God's people! *Let us as individuals, be committed to the development of both villages. Do you know that the creation of Government Secondary School, now GHS Ntumbaw, was thanks to the efforts of the present Fon of Njirong? Such commitment to the twin villages can bring us much more than we can think of or imagine. It is always a blessing for brothers to dwell in unity (Psa/m 133). We should NEVER allow individual defaulters to drag villages to conflict for their selfish aims. Let us consciously build relationships, especially those ones God has established. Who would not smile at Numbaw market or Njirong market or Mbawrong if he sees brother Edward Kwiyup and the Ngiris (his sister's children in Njirong) moving hand in hand and having a good time? After all, will the Mawar people refuse to go to Njirong after their daughter for cry die there or will Njirong people refuse to go for cry die at Fah Mawar when their wintoh is bereaved? We have to break these artificial barriers to love between us. Above all let us pray and do what is right in God's sight for our good and that of our children. God says in His word in Deut. 27:17; "Cursed is the man who moves his neighbor's boundary stone." Then all the people shall say, "Amen!" Rather let's seek his blessings by respecting what He has defined for us but sharing in love and humility for His glory and our peace. Remember He determined the exact time, place and boundaries within which we should live and in Him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:24-26). “The conclusion therefore, from the SDO' was that he stands by the decision of His predecessor and confirms the conclusions of the 2004 land commission”. Therefore

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