“I, therefore, condemn in the strongest terms, the destruction of human life and property irrespective of the reasons advanced,” he says, and adds, “I also condemn the use of violent methods of resolving disputes, for violence only begets further violence.”
Bishop Bibi calls on the perpetrators of such atrocities to “seek conversion or attract the wrath of God.”
Cameroon’s English-speaking regions plunged into conflict in 2016 after a protest by lawyers and teachers turned violent. An armed movement of separatists claiming independence for the so-called republic of Ambazonia emerged following the government’s crackdown on protesters.
In a statement issued September 7, the government of Cameroon condemned the September 6 criminal acts, describing them as cowardly and despicable attacks “perpetrated against innocent civilians by terrorists who have lost all humanity, with the aim of spreading terror among the population and thus compromising a promising start to the school year in the South West region.”
The government also expressed “its indignation” and extended the condolences of the Head of State “to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to the injured.”
In his September 8 statement shared with ACI Africa, Bishop Bibi regrets the fact that “such unrestrained mayhem is fast becoming the fate of many of our fellow citizens today since the beginning of the armed conflict in the two Anglophone regions of Cameroon and this cannot leave us indifferent.”
“Human life is a precious gift from God, and He alone has power over it. For this reason, Sacred Scripture enjoins upon us the commandment, ‘Thou Shalt not kill’ (Ex 20:13,” the Local Ordinary of Buea Diocese says in his statement dated September 8.
The Catholic Church leader who started his Episcopal Ministry as Auxiliary Bishop of Cameroon’s Bamenda Archdiocese in March 2017 says, “The Church in echoing this Divine precept, calls on everyone, not only to refrain from actions that harm the dignity of the human person, but also to be responsible for our neighbours as ourselves.”
He invites the people of God to “commend the souls of the victims of these attacks to God's mercy, and the wounded to his healing power.”
Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.