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06.01.2008

January 15, 1971- UPC Leader, Ernest Ouandie executed 























As soon as the first salvo is fired, he shouts: "Long live Cameroon" and then falls to the ground. A European officer detaches himself from the group of spectators, walks toward the dying man, puts his hand on his holster, leans forward and shoots...
[cited in Jean Ziegler, Les Rebelles: Contre l´Ordre du Monde: Mouvements Armes de Liberation Nationale du Tiers Monde, Published 1983, Editions du Seuil ]

Saturday, January 16, 1971: YAOUNDE. CAMEROON. A firing squad publicly executed three men in a public square in Bafoussam Friday on charges of plotting rebellion against the government. The men had been sentenced to death with Roman Catholic bishop Albert Ndongmo. But the bishop´s sentence was commuted to life in prison by President Ahmadou Ahidjo.

The three men executed [included] Ernest OUANDIE, a leader of the opposition [UPC], Raphael Fotsing, Ouandie´s alleged liaison [with] Ndongmo, and Gabriel Tabeu [Wambo le Courant], leader of a religious movement whose aim was [to] kill Ahidjo. Two other persons have been sentenced to death in the series of trials - (c) Bucks County Times.

"On Friday 18 January [1991], a communiqué issued by the Governor of Western Province invited the population to stay at home and to refrain from going into the streets for any reason whatsoever. Troops had been placed on alert since dawn on January 19. The municipal airport was closely guarded. Surveillance at all strategic points in the city had been increased, and extra vigilance ordered. Anyone remotely suspicious had to be identified and questioned as necessary.

The spot where Ernest Ouandie was executed on the 15th January 1971 was taken over by men in uniform. The place is just behind the BICIC [bank] at Bafoussam and is [today] covered with grass.

...The forces of law and order, alerted by the gathering crowds, descended on the site, dispersing the crowd and seizing the bouquet of flowers. [Some people] were arrested by soldiers and taken to the office of the provincial Governor; there they were interrogated."

Bishop of Nkongsamba, Albert Ndongmo and UPC leader Ernest Ouandie were charged of "plotting" against the government of Cameroon in August 1970. Ouandie was executed in the public square of Bafoussam on January 15, 1971.

"Albert Ndongmo was consecrated Bishop of Nkongsamba in 1964. in a region devastated by the UPC ´rebellion´ led by Ernest Ouandie According to M. Enoch Kwayeb, from 1963 to 1971 deputy minister responsible for administration of the federal territories. Mgr Ndongmo had offered to win over Ouandie and the government had given him authority to do this´ (Le Messager. 5 Feb 1991). Was Ernest Ouandie intending to give himself up when, according to the official version, he was arrested by the local population on 19 April 1970? Whether or not that is the case, Mgr Ndongmo whose outspokenness was causing the government problems, was arrested by the police at Douala Airport on 28 April on his return from a visit to Rome and taken to the army headquarters at Yaounde. The government reproached him with ´siding with Ernest Ouandie´, protecting him, collaborating with him and assisting him materially, morally and spiritually in his criminal activities´ (Le Messager. 9 June 1992). Tried and sentenced to death on 6 January 1971 -a sentence commuted to life imprisonment - he was to spend five years in prison before being granted a presidential pardon by President Ahidjo and placed at the disposal of the Vatican outside his native country."

Pictures of Ouandie in handcuffs posted courtesy of "Media City blog"

Lire aussi le dossier sur l´Anniversaire de la mort de Ouandié.

Compiled by Brother Metu.

 

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