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MILITANCY AND POLITICAL VIOLENCE IN CAMEROON: CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES

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MILITANCY AND POLITICAL VIOLENCE IN CAMEROON: CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background of the study

Militancy is a notion that has been widely used globally in both modern times and historical socio-political interactions among people. Human cooperation in forming communities led to intricate socio-economic dynamics that benefited some people and groups while disadvantaging others. Protests against perceived injustices may be handled by peaceful means rather than resorting to violence, as suggested by Schomerus (2017). However, if problems are let to worsen and escalate into violence, there are several choices available to address them in a violent manner. Possible factors include militancy, terror attacks, insurgencies, guerrilla warfare, and civil conflict. 

Cameroon, located in Central Africa, has been facing several socio-political issues, with militancy and political violence becoming major concerns in recent times. A combination of historical, political, economic, and social reasons has led to the increase of militant organisations and bloodshed in the area. Comprehending the fundamental reasons and outcomes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon is essential for policymakers, researchers, and foreign stakeholders aiming to tackle these challenges efficiently (Berghezan, 2016). Cameroon's history is marked by an intricate colonial past and challenges after gaining independence. Cameroon achieved independence in 1960 for French Cameroon and in 1961 for British Cameroon after being colonised by Germany and then controlled by France and Britain. The combination of these lands resulted in a varied country with many ethnic groups and cultural identities. The process of nation-building has faced problems such as ethnic strife, political marginalisation, and discrepancies in resource distribution. Political instability and governance issues in Cameroon have exacerbated complaints among different groups of the population (Wassouni & Gwoda, 2017). President Paul Biya's long-standing rule since 1982 has resulted in accusations of authoritarianism, corruption, and human rights violations. The concentration of authority in Yaoundé, the capital, has worsened sentiments of alienation among disadvantaged people, especially in the Anglophone areas of Northwest and Southwest Cameroon. The government's reaction to demonstrations and calls for further autonomy or independence has often led to repression, fueling a cycle of violence and extremism. Economic inequalities and restricted chances for socio-economic progress have significantly contributed to the emergence of militancy and political violence in Cameroon, leading to refugee movements and humanitarian emergencies. Social cohesiveness has weakened due to increasing divides based on ethnicity, language, and geography. Furthermore, the volatility presents notable obstacles to economic growth, investment, and regional stability, with the possibility of affecting neighbouring nations (Nkalwo, 2015). To comprehend the fundamental reasons and outcomes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon, a thorough examination of historical, political, economic, and social factors is necessary. To tackle these difficulties, it is essential to implement both short-term security measures and long-term initiatives focused on fostering inclusive government, socio-economic progress, and conflict resolution procedures that target the root causes of dissatisfaction among marginalised groups. Therefore, the researcher sought to assess militancy and political violence in Cameroon: causes and consequences.

1.2 Statement of the problem

Cameroon has seen a notable increase in militancy and political violence in recent years, posing a substantial threat to its stability, security, and socio-political structure. Although the government and international organisations have made attempts to tackle these challenges, there is still an urgent need to conduct a comprehensive investigation of the underlying causes and consequences of this phenomena (Wassouni & Gwoda, 2017). Understanding the intricate and diverse aspects of militancy and political violence in Cameroon requires a thorough analysis of the root causes that motivate individuals and organisations to engage in such actions, as well as an evaluation of the extensive impacts on the country and its people. 

This study attempts to investigate the main reasons and outcomes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon, including historical backgrounds and current trends (Wassouni & Gwoda, 2017). The project aims to fill this information vacuum to provide insights that may guide more efficient policy interventions, conflict resolution tactics, and peacebuilding efforts in Cameroon and other areas with comparable difficulties. Hence, the need to assess militancy and political violence in Cameroon: causes and consequences. 

1.3 Objective of the study

The broad objective of the study is to militancy and political violence in Cameroon: causes and consequences. The specific objectives is as follows

Identify the root causes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon

Examine the socio-economic consequences of militancy and political violence on communities in Cameroon

Propose strategies aimed at addressing the underlying causes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon.

1.4 Research questions

The following questions have been prepared to guide the study

What are the root causes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon?

What are the socio-economic consequences of militancy and political violence on communities in Cameroon?

What are the strategies aimed at addressing the underlying causes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon?

1.5 Significance of the study

The findings of the study will be significant to the following

Government: findings of the study will be significant to government and policymakers as the study can inform the development of evidence-based policies and interventions aimed at preventing and resolving conflicts in Cameroon. Policymakers can use this knowledge to design programs that address grievances, promote inclusive governance, and foster social cohesion.

Academia: the findings of the study will be significant to the academic community as it will contribute to the existing literature on the subject matter.

1.6 Scope of the study

The study focuses on militancy and political violence in Cameroon: causes and consequences. Empirically, the study will identify the root causes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon, examine the socio-economic consequences of militancy and political violence on communities in Cameroon and propose strategies aimed at addressing the underlying causes of militancy and political violence in Cameroon.

1.7 Limitations of the study

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire, and interview), which is why the researcher resorted to a moderate choice of sample size. More so, the researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. As a result, the amount of time spent on research will be reduced.

1.8 Definition of terms

Militancy:Militancy means using violence or aggressiveness, usually to support a cause.

Political violence:  the deliberate use of power and force to achieve political goals. 


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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