By Mua Patrick, January 23, 2017
Cameroon Journal, Yaoundé – The National Chairman of the opposition Popular Action Party, Ayah Paul Abine, also a serving Advocate General of the Supreme Court of Cameroon was last Saturday, picked up from his Tam Tam-Yaounde residence by armed security men and taken to detention.
Ayah’s arrest Saturday, came a day after he had resisted being taken away by Gendarmerie elements from Secretariat of State for Defense in charge of the National Gendarmerie, SED. His arrest comes in the wake of a crackdown by the government on Anglophone personalities in the North West and South West Regions.
Though gov’t is yet to make an official statement on the reasons for his arrest, The Cameroon Journal has independently gathered that the move is not unrelated to the role the one-time presidential candidate has been playing in the ongoing uprising by Anglophones.
The security elements had no arrest warrant and Ayah was not permitted to make any calls nor answer any when they showed up.
“He was told by them that in case of any resistance he would be brutalised and that he had no choice than to comply. It almost got violent when Ayah Paul stated to them what the law provides.” One of Ayah’s aides narrated.
The armed men, he continued “…Prevented anyone from making or taking calls. They got into Ayah’s privacy with no restraint.’’
Ayah, it should be recalled had on Thursday, January 19, refused to be whisked off by officers of the Secretariat of State for Defense in charge of the National Gendarmerie (SED).
One of Ayah’s confidants, Akonson Raymond, told The Cameroon Journal by phone shortly after the incident that the fierce critic of the Biya regime had hinted he will not attend to a Gendarmerie summons due for 11 am Friday, January 20, at SED in Yaounde.
Going by Akoson, Ayah said that he can only be heard by a judge superior in grade to him, not a military prosecutor who is below him on the judicial ladder. Ayah is a fourth-grade super-scale magistrate.
Writing on his own Facebook wall, after resisting initial attempts to arrest him, Ayah said he “could only be served through his departmental head,” and that any investigation about or against him as a serving magistrate must comply with Section 629 of the Criminal Procedure Code.
A few weeks ago, Ayah had formed a team of Anglophone Cameroon elites – English Cameroon Authority – to serve a supporting role to the now outlawed Cameroon Anglophone Civil Society Consortium in resolving the Anglophone problem.
Ayah, it should be said has in the recent past been a thorn in the flesh of the Biya regime. He resigned from the ruling CPDM to challenge President Paul Biya in the 2011 Presidential Election; an election he emerged fifth out of some 23 candidates.