Chief Ewome Ekobo John of Bwassa village in the troubled South West Region may finally have to answer for his crimes in a court of law.
The elite soldier is accused of committing many crimes, including torture, abuse of power, and kidnapping.
Now, human rights organizations and lawyers, including Tamfu Ngarka, Tristel Richard, Nicodemus Amungwa Tanyi, Edward Lyonga Ewule, Valentine Anye Nji, Melo Iliasu Pegamah, Njong Henry Tita, and Tawah Electha Bih have filed a complaint against the soldier who belongs to the Cameroun elite force, the Rapid Intervention Battalion (BIR).
“It emerges from the preamble to the Constitution of Cameroon that ‘the Cameroonian people affirm their attachment to the fundamental freedoms enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Charter of the United Nations, the African Charter of Human Rights and Peoples,” the lawyers stated in their complaint filed at the Yaounde Military Court.
The complaint suggested that Ekobo John aka Moja Moja might have isolated all these principles, yet has remained unpunished. “… It is inconceivable that a soldier acts under the rule of the Cameroonian Army to commit atrocious acts against the citizens he is called upon to protect while remaining unpunished.”
“In a state of law, each citizen is required to respect the law regardless of their social status meticulously, or even their ethnic or religious affiliation,” the complaint reads further.
The complaint comes after multiple videos of the said soldier and chief emerged depicting him meting out various forms of torture on civilians.
The latest shows Ekobo John aka Moja Moja torture a young man before locking him up in the booth of a car. Several other videos had also surfaced online, some showing the local chief dragging half-naked people on the streets, others showing him crudely shaving others’ hair with razors, and arresting others.
Most of those he tortures are people of North West origin, residing in the South West- profiling that has been largely condemned as antithetical to the much-vaunted hype about living together, a clear move towards ethnic cleansing and genocide.
The lawyers have thus called on the powers that be to “… open an investigation, have the accused Ewome Ekobo John alias Chief Moja Moja and his accomplices arrested… so that they answer for their actions.”
But government’s failure to call Ekobo John aka Moja Moja to order suggests that the authorities endorse his xenophobic attitude. And this suggests that victims of his abuses may never get justice.