Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Ngnie Kamga Flushes Out Sama Francis From Bar Presidency as Ntumfor Nico Halle Grabs Bar General Assembly

Fireworks In Bar Elections. The dust has finally settled on the much awaited Bar Association election after Ngnie Kamga from the West Region successfully knocked out Barrister Sama Francis from the post of Bar Council President while Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle made big surprises by emerging at the last minute to grab the coveted position of President of the General Assembly of the Bar.

Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle had 1052 as against only 356 for his main rival ,Tang Emmanuel.Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle  will be assisted in the arduous  task of President of the General Assembly by Barrister Kless Kouanou who beat four other candidates to take the position.

In his first reactions after his brilliant  election .Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle refuted claims that his running for the position of president of the General Assembly of the Bar was to take Anglophones off the position of the Bar president .He said there is no written law which states that if an Anglophone is voted president of the Bar General Assembly, no other Anglophone can be voted president of the Bar Council.

He recalled that there was a time when the two posts were handled by francophone’s .He said “My dear brother and Barrister Sama Francis  could still have won if he did not withdraw his candidature .He is my friend and brother and I couldn’t do anything to hurt him. I  only gave in at the last minute because the pressure on me to run was unbearable. By accepting to run for the Cameroon Bar assembly presidency, I virtually sacrificed my personal interest for the interest of the Cameroon lawyers and the Bar general assembly. The general assembly is the supreme organ of the Bar Association. This is because the decisions of the association are taken by the general assembly while the Bar council simply implements them. Therefore the Bar council president is answerable to the Bar Assembly president”.

Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle continued to maintain that he did not betray Anglophones ,sustaining that the pressure on him was unbearable .He said he  did not intend to block Sama Francis  from seeking another term because he,Sama could still have won if he ran ,but it is unfortunate he decided not to threw the towel.

Immediately after the election of Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle as President of the General Assembly of the Bar  Barrister Sama Francis ,after concerting with Barrister Akere Muna and Barrister Luke Sendze decided not to run in the elections.Thereafter,he and a host of his supporters vamoosed from the elections of the Bar Council and returned to Bamenda before 6 PM on Saturday.

How Barrister Sama Francis Lost

Meantime ,in the build up to the elections of the Cameroon Bar Association ,a group of lawyers known as “the new generation “vowed to oust Sama Francis from the Bar Presidency because he failed to live up to expectations during his first two year mandate.

This was the subject of a more than four hour closed door meeting that held in a popular Bamenda restaurant on Friday 9 January 2015.The spokesperson and one of the main organizers of the event,Barrister Ateh Jacob Fopah told the press that the idea is to break away from the tradition where lawyers are usually quarantined in various forms and forced to vote candidates that they do not know or like. He said the”new generation lawyers “ are not young lawyers, but rather lawyers of all age groups  who share the new vision of empowering all the lawyers to have a greater say in the running of the affairs of the association. Thus, the meeting which brought together about 80 lawyers from Bamenda and beyond was held under the slogan” we have a say”.

One of the major thrust of this new thinking ,Barrister Ateh explained is the fact that in the past  few well to do lawyers in the association have given themselves the responsibility of paying transport fares ,and providing accommodation for a vast majority of lawyers to elections and finally coercing them to vote candidates that they are told to vote. Since they usually attend the assemblies on the pay roll of others, Ateh fumed ,they usually do not have a free hand to vote their consciences. It is for this reason that the “new generation “ lawyers want to break away from this tradition by making sure that they take care of  all their bills to and from Yaounde where the elections will take place so that they will have a free hand to vote their consciences. Barrister Ateh Francis did not hesitate to add that if they have taken this stance, it is because they are largely discontented with the Sama Francis led administration which they  wanted to flush  out. He wondered aloud how Barrister Sama Francis who sometimes back announced that he wanted to disbar about 300 lawyers would now turn around and say he wants their votes.

Even before the meeting ended however, news of “spies “  being present made the rounds. One of the lawyers  told the press that most of the lawyers who were present at the meeting were not members of the “new generation” but were rather supporters of Barrister Sama  Francis who only  showed up to know what was happening. He went on to point out that there were only 15 lawyers who belonged to the “new generation “  group. This further angered the “new generation “ lawyers who said Sama Francis would face their wrath for insulting and underestimating them by saying that they were “hungry”. Lawyers.

At the end of the meeting however, three lawyers from the north west region were designated as candidates of the “new generation “  for the elections in Yaounde. They include Barrister Kemende Henry Gamnsey, hitherto the Batonnier’s representative in the North West, Barrister Umenjoh Hiram and Barrister Mbah Eric Mbah.

One of the nominees, Barrister Kenmende Henry Gamsey told reporters that though a national figure in the Bar Association, he has aligned with the “new generation lawyers “because of the fresh impetus and the new dynamism that they promise to bring to the association. He added that the idea has already been taken to other regions where it has been bought ,reason why lawyers from other regions were present at the meeting. The same position was echoed by Barrister Umenjoh Hiram who said the voice of the all the lawyers especially that of the young ones who have up till now been sidelined in decision making.

Enter  Barrister Ngnie Kamga

No sooner had the “new generation “ lawyers finished their meeting, another candidate, Ngnie Kamga accompanied by a former  Bar Council President ,Eta Besong Junior stormed the same Bamenda restaurant on Thursday January 22.Their campaign was heavily attended by the “new generation” lawyers .The message  of the Ngnie Kamga campaign team which had already stormed the South West Region was that  six lawyers of Common Law extraction have been Bar Council president as against five for those of the civil law extraction, or Francophones. According to them therefore, it was logical for Ngnie Kamga to be voted to strike the balance. Also spotted at this meeting were adherent of the “new generation” lawyers camp like the hitherto Batonnier’s representative for the North West, Barrister Kenmende Henry Gamsey who was campaigning more for himself than Ngnie Kamga. It was therefore no surprise that Barrister Sama Francis was not able to even run for the elections given that all the “new generation” lawyers had already promised that they would vote him out

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Anonymous said...

He who lives by he sword dies by the sword.. The guy was just so intoxicated with the Title and thought his election to the position somehow gave him the liberty to bully and belittle other colleagues. He was just so full of himself, treated younger lawyers shabbily and seemingly forgot there will come a day of reckoning. He certainly got the humiliation he deserved with this defeat at the elections. In fact alot of lawyers openly celebrated his defeat.
What A lesson on humility!

Ngiah Tsay.

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