Sons and Daughters of the Soil
248 Pages
English
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Sons and Daughters of the Soil

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Gain access to the library to view online
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248 Pages
English

Description

This book makes a rare and original contribution on the history of little documented internal land conflicts and boundary misunderstandings in Cameroon, where attention has tended to focus too narrowly on international boundary conflicts such as that between Cameroon and Nigeria. The study is of the Bamenda Grassfields, the region most plagued by land and boundary conflicts in the country. Despite claims of common descent and cultural similarities by most communities in the region, relations have been tested and dominated by recurrent land and boundary conflicts since the middle of the 20th Century. Nkwi takes us through these contradictions, as he draws empirically and in general on his rich historical and ethnographic knowledge of the tensions and conflicts over land and boundaries in the region to situate and understand the conflicts between Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh � the epicenter of land and boundary � from c.1950s � 2009. Little if any scholarly attention has focused on this all important issue, its pernicious effects on the region notwithstanding. This book takes a bold step in the direction of the social history of land and boundary conflicts in Cameroon, and demonstrates that there is much of scholarly interest in understanding the centrality of land and boundaries in the configuration and contestation of human relations. In his innovative and stimulating blend of history and ethnography, Nkwi points to exciting new directions of paying closer attention to relationships informed by consciousness on and around land and boundaries.

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Published by
Published 01 January 2011
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EAN13 9789956579075
Language English
Document size 2 MB

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Exrait

Sons and Daughters of the Soil
Sons and Daughters of the Soil Land and Boundary Conflicts in North West Cameroon, 1955-2005
Walter Gam Nkwi
Langaa Research & Publishing CIG Mankon,Bamenda
Publisher: LangaaRPCIG Langaa Research & Publishing Common Initiative Group P.O. Box 902 Mankon Bamenda North West Region Cameroon Langaagrp@gmail.com www.langaa-rpcig.net
Distributed outside N. America by African Books Collective orders@africanbookscollective.com www.africanbookscollective.com
Distributed in N. America by Michigan State University Press msupress@msu.edu www.msupress.msu.edu
ISBN: 9956-578-92-4
© Walter Gam Nkwi 2011
DISCLAIMER All views expressed in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Langaa RPCIG.
Content
Dedication .............................................................................................vii Acknowledgements ...................................................................................ix Preface ...................................................................................................xii
Chapter One Introduction .......................................................................................... 1 A) Dancing the Plot and Riding the Past into the Present ..... 1 B) Understanding inter-community boundary conflicts within Homer-Dixon Framework ........................................... 9
Chapter Two The Geographical and Ethnographic Survey of Bamenda Grassfields .................................................................................... 11 A) Staking the Study Area ......................................................... 11 B) Peoples of the Region ........................................................... 15 C) Traditional and Socio-Political Organisations ................... 21 D) Decentralised Societies ......................................................... 22 E) The contending issues of boundary conflicts in the Bamenda Grassfields ..................................................... 23
Chapter Three A History of Bambili/Babanki-Tungoh and the Genesis of the Boundary Conflict .......................................................... 39 A) Geographical Locations and Daily Activities ................... 41 B) From Fraternal Friends (up to 1950s) to Fraternal Enemies? ................................................................................ 43 C) Contending issues: causes of the boundary conflict between Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh ............................. 45
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D) The Manifestation of the Boundary Conflict c. 1950-1955: The epoch of Law Suits ............................ 53 E) Decision on Land Dispute Between Babanki-tungoh And Bambili Agreed Upon By The Bafut ......................... 57 F) The War Period ....................................................................... 65 G) The 1995 War ......................................................................... 79 H) The Wesmacott’s myth: a commentary .............................. 88
Chapter Four The “Cold” Years, 1995-2005 ......................................................... 99 A) The Complaints Period ......................................................... 99 B) The Koungo Edima Commission ...................................... 106
Chapter Five Consequences of the Bambili and Babanki-Tungoh Boundary Conflict and Some Suggested Solutions ............................... 117 A) Social Consequences ........................................................... 117 B) Economic Consequences .................................................... 130 C) Political Consequences ........................................................ 131 D) Efforts at Resolving the Boundary Conflict ................... 134 E) Why the attempted solutions failed .................................. 145 F) Suggested Solutions ............................................................. 151
Chapter Six General Conclusion ......................................................................... 161
Appendices ..........................................................................................169 Notes on Sources ..................................................................................217
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Dedication
To Professor Emeritus, Martin Zachary Njeuma, who rested in the lord on 28 April 2010, without seeing the outcome of this piece of work which we jointly laid the foundation together, way back in 1997 at his residence at Governor’s quarters, Buea.
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Acknowledgements
In the writing and completing this book inspiration was received from many people whom I would like to acknowledge. My profound gratitude goes to Professors Martin Zachary Njeuma and Victor Julius Ngoh who first accepted to guide me through my Masters thesis thereby getting the academic ball rolling. In a like manner I am indebted to Mr. Kiawi Paul Tuh whom I first came in contact with in 1982 as my history teacher in secondary school and who in 2008 gave me an abundance of primary data which helped me to enlarge and sharpen my views and extend the scope of this study. To him I say ‘‘Thank You’’. Professor Dr. Francis B. Nyamnjoh; Mr. Justine Cox and Dr. Divine Fuh kept on encouraging me to write. I also want to extend my gratitude to Mr. Epie, who made it possible for me to lay hands on a court judgment which I desperately needed for this book. My immeasurable gratitude goes to the authorities of the Afrika Studie Centrum who granted me two weeks to travel to the Public Record Office (PRO) archives in Kew, London, in November 2007 where I coincidentally got some relevant material. I am grateful to the entire staff of the PRO archives for the generosity they showed me during my time of stay in that archives. In that direction, I also wish to register my deep appreciation to the African Studies Centre which through my mentor, Professor Mirjam Elizabeth de Bruijn and her collaborators made it possible for me to visit PRO IN November 2007. The staff of the Buea National Archives, Bamenda Provincial Archives is not forgotten. My parents who gave me all the affection are not left out. My elder brother, Rev. Father Oliver Chiatu Gam also helped me with some data; to him I am not ungrateful. To all the informants whose names appear in the bibliography, I am also grateful to all of you. Last but not the least, I am grateful to my «Mona Lisa» (my wife), Felicitas who endured my absence from home and kept it going. She also helped me with some typing technicalities in this volume. My three sons: Ankinimbom, Ajimsimbom and Afuhmbom were very understanding. To them I would remain forever grateful.
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