It’s a hot sunny afternoon on May 29, 2019 and a black jeep with tinted windscreens and windows emerges at the second checkpoint after the toll gate in Santa subdivision. Its marked Constitutional Council (CC) on its license plate. Yet gendarmerie officers on duty signals it stop.
One of them approaches the vehicle and salutes in true military style as another gendarmerie officer winds down the window of the passenger seat. In the back seat is Professor Paul Nkwi who winds down his car window and chats a little with the inspecting officer. The black jeep zooms off after the exercise which lasted barely two minutes.
This scenario would be different if this happened a couple of days ago. The soldiers at the checkpoint would gave spent more time for a thorough check of the vehicle. This is thanks to instructions from the Head of State, President Paul Biya. The police boss, the delegate general for national security, Martin Mbarga Nguelle signed a notice recently in which he revealed that the Head of State had ordered reinforcement of traffic security. He ordered that henceforth, administrative and military vehicles are subject to rigourous checks as well as civilian vehicles plying Cameroonian roads.
In the notice he instructs that the documents of the vehicles should be checked as well as the identification of their participants. We gathered that these measures are intended to prevent transportation of weapons by separatists in disguise. Reports say separatists are in possession of war weapons and munitions which is an indication that arms are still in circulation despite a recent decision taken earlier this year banning the sale of weapons.
Note that the Minister of Territorial Administration, Paul Atanga Nji signed an order banning the trade in arms in about seven regions including the restive North West and South West region where secessionist groups are wreaking havoc. He also requested gun and munition owners in the region where the trade in arms in proscribed to present themselves and their equipment to administrative authorities. Vendors of weapons nationwide were also requested to present an inventory of their stock while others were obliged to close down their shops
The effective implementation of the instructions of the Head of State, President Paul Biya will go a long to reinforce the fight against illicit trade in arms. As noted on the instructions from the delegate general for national security, Martin Mbarga Nguele, the rigorous checks are to secure safety and guarantee peace, given the fact that