The Catholic church in Cameroon is mourning the death of the parish priest of Bomaka, a district of Buea, the capital of the English-speaking region of South-West Cameroon, who was killed on Friday by unidentified individuals.
“We have received photographs of the body of the deceased priest, Alexander Sob Nougi,’‘ said a communication officer of the Catholic Church in Yaoundé, specifying that the perpetrators of the murder remain unknown and that the body is mutilated.
Neither the Cameroonian authorities nor the Catholic hierarchy expressed an opinion on the circumstances of the death of the priest. Travel is difficult in English-speaking Cameroon, according to several Catholics interviewed by AFP.
Security in Cameroon’s two English-speaking regions, the north-west and south-west, has deteriorated considerably.
Fighting became daily between the security forces and armed separatists demanding the creation of an independent English-speaking state.
Catholic Church as conflict mediator
The Catholic Church is the only actor capable of “promoting dialogue” between the insurgents and the government, according to the International Crisis Group (ICG) research centre in April.
It represents almost a third of the Cameroonian population, according to the ICG, which deplored the Catholic Church’s “divergent positions” on the Anglophone question and invited it to “overcome its divisions and display its neutrality”.
This increasingly violent armed conflict in the English-speaking zone, as well as that against the jihadist group Boko Haram in the north of the country, could disrupt the presidential elections scheduled for 7 October, according to analysts.
President Paul Biya, 85, declared his candidature last week for a seventh consecutive term.
His supporters believe that he is best able to respond to the English-speaking crisis, his opponents accusing him of being responsible for the crisis.