In Matazem, Santa district, at the entrance to the North-West, the official visit being carried out by Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute (photo) and his delegation was disrupted by gunshots allegedly fired by separatists. The Prime Minister was addressing residents when his security details interrupted his speech and urged him to go back to his vehicle as can be seen in video footages that went viral on social media.
According to local sources, the gunshots rang out from surrounding hills when the Prime Minister took the floor to thank administrative and traditional rulers who welcomed him with a gift.
According to some people, the gunshot was fired too far from where the Prime Minister was speaking but it was enough to force security details to act to avoid any possible risks.
"Either the gunshot was staged or the perpetrators were very far. However, it prompted fears and the Prime Minister was forced to end his speech and get into his car,” a local source commented.
After the ceremony was cut short, the convoy made a second stop at Bamenda, Up Station. Before the gunshots, the official had reminded the gathering of the purpose of his visit. "I’ve come as President Paul Biya’s messenger of peace,” he told Matazen residents.
For this visit, which will end on Friday, October 8, Joseph Dion Ngute will meet with several delegations. First, he will meet the high command of the 5th Joint Military Region, then delegations from the seven districts of the region.
During his visit, the Prime Minister will explain how the resolutions taken during the Major National Dialogue, organized two years ago to find solutions to the Anglophone crisis, are being implemented by the government. According to the Prime minister’s office, the official will also take suggestions from the parties he would meet.