Living far away from home during a crisis is nothing worth experiencing. Since November 2016 when the current (socio)-political crisis in Cameroon was birthed, my heart, emotions and feelings have been a rigorous talking drum that never goes to sleep. The anxiety of waking up to the next horror have been omnipresent in my life’s menu.

The recent barbaric murder of the children in Kumba in South West (region of) Cameroon has again taken me down that road of pain and frustration of understanding why this is so and why killing school children will make meaning to any human on earth. I have been in a state of terror,shock and disbelief yet these are not good enough to savage the reality. Those children truly are dead! They will be buried. It immediately brings back the ugly memories of the slaying of my friend who was a police officer or the murder of my cousin basically three months. (From Ngarbuh to Kwakwa, from Kumba to Melim I bleed from a far away land)

As a Cameroonian living abroad, I can hardly go through this tough times without thinking about ugly role (a faction) of the diaspora is playing in this crisis. Even if I were to question this role, the quick actions (of some of the) identified diaspora leaders via their various social media platforms are a call for concern. It’s a bit disappointing that some of us living away in Europe,the USA and other parts of the world do not reflect on our privileges as far as the ugly political situation of our country is concerned.

It’s terrible to imagine that a part of the diaspora is (arming/advocating) for the arming of the local populations from (their safe havens) in Europe. Some of the leaders boldly shout ‘Our people need guns’ from the comfort of their rooms in safe Europe. Others call for reinforcement of the band on schools while at the same time their own children abroad do not just go to school but also go to leisure activities.

It is time for us to once more reflect genuinely on our role in the crisis. It is time for us to once more consider what our social media posts and activities in general do to people. Even if the government and her military are mad as has always been the case in Cameroon, we should not continue dragging our people down this road of pain. We should begin reflecting on how to use everything we have and our positions to advocate for an #EndAnglophoneCrisis. May the slain kids in Kumba be the last.

Valerie Viban
Cameroonian living in Germany