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Interview : Professor Konde Emmanuel, a basaa from Limbe.

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“The Grand Bassa of Cameroon must play a leadership role in this regard”

Théodore Mayi-Matip, a Bassa patriarch, once wrote that the Bassa people rooted in the South-West province and/or region of Cameroon are related to Bassa people living in Francophone Cameroon. Although  former Indomitable Lion and Canon Yaoundé soccer player Charly Ntamack is well known as a Bassa from English-speaking Cameroon, many Bassa from French-speaking Cameroon oftentimes forget that they’ve got siblings in Anglophone Cameroon, and that they can at times take their cue from them. “” has interviewed Professor Emmanuel Konde, a Bassa from Limbe, so that he might briefly tell all Bassa across the globe the story of Bassa people in the South-West region of Cameroon.

Litenlibassa: Mè `nyéga à ( Greetings), magnán ( Brother) Professor Konde. You´re a Cameroonian of Bassa ethnicity; you´re from Limbe – former Victoria--, Fako division, South-West region. You live in the U.S.A. Your name “Konde” is bassa; it means “add” in English and “ajoute” in French. Can you better introduce yourself to our readers so that they may know more about you?

Professor Konde: I am Emmanuel Konde, a Bassa of contemporary Limbe.  Limbe is my hometown, the town that nourished me, formed my being, and made me who I am today. I live in the United States with my immediate family but regularly visit my hometown Limbe.  I am an intellectual progeny of Boston University’s History Department and African Studies Center, where I received graduate training in African History, European Diplomatic History, United States Foreign Relations, Comparative Politics, and earned the Ph.D. in History in 1991.  I also obtained a Master of Arts degree in History from Boston University (1985); a Master of Arts degree in Political Science from Northeastern University in 1984, specializing in political philosophy and international relations; and, after earning the Bachelor of Arts in Political Economy in 1982 from Hillsdale College in Michigan, I studied Public Administration at the University of Houston from 1982-1983.

I have taught at Tuskegee University (1990-1991), Morris Brown College (1991-1992), Morehouse College (1992-1995), and Clark-Atlanta University (1995-1998).  Prior to joining the Faculty of Albany State University in 2003, I served in various teaching and administrative capacities at Knoxville College in Tennessee, where I was first hired as Associate Professor of History and Chair of the Department of History, Religion, and Philosophy.  In 2001 I was appointed Head of the Humanities Division and Dean of the Faculty.

As a 1998-99 teaching and research recipient of the United States Fulbright Scholar award to Sub-Saharan Africa, I was the first native Cameroonian to return to Cameroon and “missionize” as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar at the University of Buea (UB).  During my year-long teaching and research appointment at UB, I conducted more research on women and politics and combined my findings with work done for my doctoral dissertation to produce African Women and Politics: Knowledge, Gender, and Power in Male-Dominated Cameroon (Edwin-Melen, 2005).  This book (2005) is featured in many major research university libraries around the world and is categorized across disciplines as a work of Anthropology, History, Political Science, Sociology, Sociology of Women, African Studies, and Women’s Studies. My current research-in-progress includes two book-length monographs tentatively titled: “Political Transition in Cameroon: From Ahidjo’s ‘Old Order,’ Biya’s ‘New Deal,’ to Fru Ndi’s ‘Multipartism?’” and “Statecraft and Diplomacy: Talleyrand in French Politics and European Diplomacy.”

litenlibassa : Are most South-West Bassa from Limbe? Are there more areas in the South-West region where other Bassa have taken root?

Professor Konde: The largest number of Bassa people in the South West Province are in Limbe.  Other Bassa groups can be found in the creek villages from Bonaberim to Tiko, notably in Missellele and Modoni.  There are Bassa ba Buea, Bassa ba Muyuka, Bassa ba Kumba, etc.  The Bassa are a migrating people and this is reflected in their settlement of the entire Cameroon coast and the interior forest region.

“All Bassa people in Cameroon have ancestral roots in someplace in Sanaga Maritime”

Is that true that you´ve got some roots in Babimbi, in the Sanaga Maritime division?

Professor Konde: Of course.  All Bassa people in Cameroon have ancestral roots in someplace in Sanaga Maritime.  I am not completely cut off from my roots in Babimbi. During my childhood and boyhood years, I spent every long holiday with family members in New Bell, Douala.  But we never went beyond Douala.  I also spent time in Yaounde with family members.  I am related to the first native Protestant Pastor in French Cameroun, Pastor Paul Tjeka. I am a descendant of the Log Bassanguen clan, with branches in French and English-speaking Cameroon. I have the genealogy of the entire Log Bassanguen clan, which  was passed down to me by my grandfather.  The note book travelled all the way to Babimbi, Yaounde, and Douala, where members of my clan inscribed the names of their forebears, with their dap kokoa. I have never been to Nkong Kwalla (Ndom), where I am told my distant ancestors came.  The closest I have been to Sanaga Maritime is Songmbengue, where my wife was born.

You´ve written, authored and/or co-edited several books so far, including “African Women and Politics: Knowledge, Gender, and Power in Male – Dominated Cameroon”; “European Invention of African Slavery: Origins of the Atlantic Slave Trade in West Africa and the African Diaspora in the Americas”; “Bassa Antiquity in Contemporary Limbe”. Can you hold forth upon the contents of the third book, “Bassa Antiquity in Contemporary Limbe”?

Professor Konde: Bassa Antiquity in Contemporary Limbe is an historical account of the migration and settlement of Bassa people in pre-colonial, pre-Victoria, Limbe.  The Bassa people settled in Limbe in the 1700s, at about the same time that the Duala encountered the Bassa in the Wouri Estuary.  I draw on the existing scholarship of African migration and settlement patterns, oral testimonies of elderly Bassa ba Limbe, brief life histories of selected individuals, internet discussion forum debates, and my personal experiences growing up in Limbe.  I weave these strands together in my reconstruction of more than 250 years of the history of the Bassa people in Limbe.  My argument is simply that for any group of people that have inhabited a location for this long, they cannot and should not be categorized as “settlers” but “ as indigenes”. The Bassa people of Limbe were well established in pre-Victoria, pre-colonial Limbe some seven or eight decades before the arrival of English Baptist missionary Alfred Saker in 1858; the Bassa were in contemporary Limbe before German colonization, and before the independence and re-unification of Cameroon.

Many have misrepresented my book as a veiled attempt to assign Bakweri ancestral lands to the Bassa.  This is wrong.  My book is not about ancestral lands.  I merely use this “tribal” outdated concept as the point of entry into my advocacy for Bassa inclusion into the power structure of Limbe.  My work is a challenge to the existing political orientation that assigns or divides up national power and wealth solely on the basis of ethnicity with special ties to ancestral lands as opposed to place of birth.  Cameroon is not a country made up of ethnic polities; it is a nation-state in which national citizenship stands above ethnic-citizenship.  Above all, I want to persuade the political leaders of Cameroon to rethink and replace the old notion of Cameroonians as belonging to ethnicities with the new notion of  their belonging to the nation to which they should direct their allegiances and loyalties.  Cameroonians resident anywhere in Cameroon should, after meeting specific and legally binding residency requirements, be allowed to participate fully in the politics of that village, town, or city.   The thrust of my book is much larger than the Bassa of Limbe, much larger than any single ethnic group.  It is a nationalist treatise that seeks to redefine the thrust of national policy by suggesting new ways of looking at old policies that have outlived their usefulness.

Apparently you clarify, in that scholarly work, the issue and dispute over the early inhabitants of the city of Douala and surroundings(Wouri) and the indigenes of Limbe. Will you please explain the movements of the various ethnicities who were living in those areas or who relocated to those areas in the 18th century?

Professor Konde:I have discussed this in Chapter Two of Bassa Antiquity in Contemporary Limbe.  Of the three coastal Cameroonian groups that are featured in my book, the Bassa are universally acknowledged as the first to settle the Atlantic coast of Cameroon. Bassa settlement of the Cameroon coast predates the arrival of all other groups indigenous to contemporary Cameroon.  Scholars of diverse persuasions, including Eugene Wonyu, Edwin Ardener, and Robert Cornevin have acknowledged the primacy of Bassa settlement on the Atlantic coast of contemporary Cameroon. Wonyu had noted that the Bassa settled the Wouri Estuary about 900 A.D. Ardener and Cornevin have both asserted that the Douala encountered the Bassa on the Wouri Estuary in the early 1700s.  Ardener dates the arrival of the Bakweri in their present locations in Fako Division between 1750 and 1770, and adds that the Bakweri did not feature in the historical literature prior to 1841.

As first settlers of the Cameroon coast, it was natural for the adventurous Bassa of Cameroon who had traversed across the Sahara and much of West Africa to scout their new environment so as to understand what it held for them.  Had the Duala not acknowledged that they encountered the Bassa upon arriving at the Wouri Estuary around the late seventeenth and early eighteenth century, there would in fact be many skeptics arguing against Bassa primacy in that area.  Although it is not recorded, some Bassa may well have navigated the Wouri Estuary all the way to the Ambas Bay section of the Atlantic coastline before the arrival of the Bakweri more than half a century later.  Small bands of Bassa migrants had visited and settled in portions of the area it was named Victoria in 1858 by Alfred Saker.  By the 1780s, small isolated communities of Bassa people could be found in villages along the Cameroon coast from the Wouri Estuary to Ambas Bay.

This Bassa migration, which probably began much earlier, took a new turn in the late-seventeenth and early-eighteen centuries when the Duala first made their appearance in territory inhabited by the Bassa near the Dibamba River.   It is likely that the Bakweri were a splinter group of the newly arrived Duala migrants.  After their long trek from somewhere in present-day Gabon, moving in nomadic bands from one locality to another, the Bakweri, like the Duala and other newly arrived migrating Bantu-speaking groups finally began settling in the foothills of the Cameroon Mountain and the surrounding areas. The early histories of these migrations were narrated orally.  Similarly were stories of Bassa adventurers passed down orally from generation to generation. Some of these Bassa travelers never returned to their homeland in Sanaga Maritime, while others returned after long years of absence. This was a common pattern of migration among the African groups of Bantu-speakers who would finally settle on the Cameroon coast.  Offshoots of the Duala include the Bakweri of Fako Division, the Oroko of Meme and Ndian divisions, and probably the Bafaw and Mbo.  It is alo likely that the Bassa migrated and settled among the Bayang of Mamfe Division in the South West Province.  I was pleasantly surprised during a research foray in Yaounde in 1989, when visiting one of my contacts, the husband called out to one of their sons: “Njock“.  I could not believe my ears.  So inquired: did you say “Njock“? And the answer was yes.  But that is a Bassa name, I told my host.  What does it mean, I inquired?  “Elephant“.  Njock or Ndjock is elephant in Bassa and Bayang.  I am no linguist.  But this is suggestive of some degree of culture contact between the two groups and, perhaps, more.

“The great work of these men must be studied carefully by the young…”

Can you talk a little bit about distinguished Bassa from the South-West region who made relevant and significant contributions to the advancement of Cameroon in many fields? Magnán, feel free to apprise all folks around the globe of the great deeds Bassa people have done hitherto in order to build up and develop Cameroon.

Professor Konde:In the Epilogue of Bassa Antiquity, entitled “Migrated, Settled, Contributed, but…” I have attempted to highlight some of the notable contributions of Bassa ba Limbe.  Permit me to quote extensively from the text: “A change in attitude among the Bassa of Victoria began during the Second World War and has  continued ever since.  A new breed of Bassa children, markedly different from their parents and forebears, were born during this period of dramatic change.  Within a small area of Victoria, inhabited mostly by Bassa people, their community produced diplomats, a slew of doctors of philosophy, medical doctors, and pharmacists, all in a single generation.  Virtually all the male children of this generation, with few exceptions, would rise above the lowly status of their fathers.  Among these new breed of Bassa ba Limbe were such luminaries as Messrs Martin Ntamack and John Etame, both first-rate diplomats who served their country with distinction; Dr. Peter Y. Ntamack, Dr. Peter Mase Momha, Dr. Lawrence Francis Biaka and, in Buea, Dr. Martin Z. Njeuma.  Peter Ntamack was a professor of law at the University of Yaounde and contributed to the establishment of the Faculty of Law and Economics at Cameroon’s first university.  As its first dean, Dr. Ntamack trained some of Cameroon’s leading lawyers and administrators.  He served Cameroon throughout his entire career but never rose above the position of dean.

Dr. Momha, an economist, grew up as a neighbor of Dr. Ntamack at Half Mile on the opposite side of Rainbow Chemist. Their fathers’ compounds were separated by the home of the Messi family, whose patriarch was a Beti.  Mase returned to Cameroon in the early 1970s after long years of study in the United States.  He returned to Cameroon in the 1970s with the intention of establishing Yoho!, a soft-drink brewing company, and other businesses.  But his efforts were frustrated by some of his own childhood friends who, out of jealousy, determined to stop him from realizing his dream.

Perhaps the most successful Bassa of Limbe is Dr. Francis Lawrence Biaka.  He too was  a neighbor of Drs. Ntamack and Mase and  grew up in Coconut Highland.  His father’s home was about 400 meters away behind the homes of his illustrious contemporaries discussed above.  A physician by by training and profession, Dr. Biaka was able to save enough money working in Britain and Cameroon and this enabled him to invest in the construction of one of the finest medical centers in the South West Province—St. Veronica’s Medical Center, with a Nursing School, in the foothills of the Fako Mountain in Buea.  Dr. Biaka named his medical center after his mother—Mrs. Veronica Biaka.

Dr. Martin Njeuma was the maternal grandson of Chief Kuva Likenya of Buea, the warrior king who waged two wars with the Germans and lost his life defending his territory against German colonial encroachment.  Dr. Njeuma played a leading role in the establishment of the faculties of arts at both the University of Yaounde and the University of Buea, serving both institutions as dean of the faculty of arts.  Although he was recognized as one of the finest historians in the country, Dr. Njeuma, like Dr. Ntamack, could only rise to the position dean and no higher.  A common denominator linked these outstanding professors: both were Anglophone Bassa and thus were deemed as outsiders and denied the opportunity to serve their country with the best of their abilities.

Two other prominent Bassa ba Victoria who excelled in business were Mr. Camillus Hongla and Mr. James Mahop.  Both of these men were very close friends, born and bred in Victoria, and received their training at Ombe Technical College in Cameroon and the Yaba Institute of Technology in Nigeria. Upon completion of their studies in Nigeria, they returned to Cameroon and jointly established a Radio repair shop along Church Street in Victioria.  They were also contracted by Powercam, the local state-owned electricity company, to do some installation work.  Their joint enterprise did exceptionally well but they eventually separated.  Mahop established Mahop Electrical Company and Hongla Pan Electric Enterprises, Ltd.  Both businesses grew to be very lucrative. Most of the electricians in English-speaking Cameroon were apprenticed to and received their training from Mahop Electrical Company and Pan Electric Enterprises.  The electrification of West Cameroon, from Victoria Division on the coast to the remote hinterlands of Nkambe Division, was executed by Pan Electric and Mahop Electrical.                                                                                                                                                              Although the Bassa ba Victoria discussed above were few in number, they constituted what can aptly be termed as trailblazers in their respective fields of endeavor.  Undoubtedly, these men not only paved the way by example for the younger generations of Bassa ba Limbe, but left indelible marks on the trail of time.  Their accomplishments were staggering and their names, forever etched in the memory of those who know and knew them, are spoken with great pride and wonderment.  The great work of these men must be studied carefully by the young so that even if they decide not to walk in the footsteps and the path that the successful who came before them had trodden, at least the lessons learned would lead them to creating equally significant pathways for later generations.“

“Few people know that our grandparents and parents were disfranchised during the 1961 Plebiscite”

What are the aspirations of Bassa rooted in the South-West region of Cameroon?

Professor Konde: The aspirations of the Bassa in the South West Province are no different from the aspirations of the Bassa anywhere in Cameroon.  They merely want to be given the opportunity to serve their country with the best of their abilities.  The Bassa of the South West Province and/or detest the political discrimination that they have been made to suffer in English-speaking Cameroon.  Few people know that our grandparents and parents were disfranchised during the 1961 Plebiscite.  They were denied the vote by the political leaders of Southern Cameroons.  That was wrong.  It should never happen again, especially to Bassa ba Limbe.

Bassas are getting together so as to better and systematically do their bit to the improvement of the living conditions of many in Cameroon. Are Bassas from the South-West region ready to join their brethren from French-speaking Cameroon?  How?

Professor Konde:I cannot speak for all the Bassa of the South West Province.  But I know that the Bassa of Limbe are willing to work cooperatively with their French-speaking brethren.  One way to start building this cooperative relationship is to construct historic monuments such as schools and museums.  The schools will serve as centers of learning in which all Cameroonians will be instructed about our culture-history; the museums will feature the relics of our diverse cultures drawn from across the land that emphasize the “unifying” elements among all Cameroonians.  We must craft or invent a national political culture and ideology that emphasizes “Cameroonian-ness” as opposed to ethnicities.  The Grand Bassa of Cameroon must play a leadership role in this regard.

Do you have a message you want to convey to all people of Bassa ethnicity all over the world?

Professor Konde:The Bassa should play a pivotal role in forging unity among not just themselves but also between them and other Cameroonian groups.  We need to develop a true sense of love of country and dedicated service to the Fatherland.

Many thanks, brother Professor Konde for devoting a portion of your precious time to sharing your knowledge of your ethnicity with your siblings world-wide.

Professor Konde:The pleasure was mine.  Thank you!

This interview was conducted by Mathias Victorien Ntep


#107 05-11-2011 17:49
Anglophone Bassas played a very active role in the struggle for independence in Cameroon. We know about Oum Nyobe and his entourage.

What was never learnt was how over the years they were able to evade capture. They lived in the ceiling in my late father's home in Tiko.

When UNC finally succeeded to gain control of the country, all documents related to the activities of UPC will be destroyed.

The Bassas were so developed that the first priority of the germans was to annihilate them with the assistance of some of the chiefs. The collaborator chief destroyed the trust of the people for organized rule. Bassa self reliance in Cameroon came as a result of betrayal and pain.

The Bassas have shown a lot of resilience in maintaining their identity. Our struggles should make us compassionate and willing to work with all Cameroonians and peoples at large.
#106 05-11-2011 17:31
Bassa's did not arrive in Limbe for a jolly ride to tap palm wine. The were actively traded as slaves by the Douala chiefs. As slavery ended, they had already been loaded for departure to the Americas.

The Douala chief did not want to stop the trade. Their ships were blocked from departing by abolitionists and the english enforcing abolition.

Bassa people were dropped off by the ships in Manorwar bay. As the had to climb hills to get away from the sea, they will christian the place MABETA - A BASSA NAME FOR HAVING TO CLIMB.

With all due respect to the learned historians, more information about the BASSA's in Limbe is in the Gernan archives. Bassa people are sedentary and not migratory. Migrating populations exist further inland with NOMADS
#105 23-03-2011 23:39
Mayega Malam, Très cher frère et aministrateur: Pour le plaisir j'aimerai si vous pouvez nous faire partager ces deux best seller du chercheur bassa Ekwe roger sur les berges du wouri c'est aussi faire connaitre aux jeunes l'histoire bassa du cameroun
+1 #104 07-11-2010 00:14
Moi je suis totalement indigné parce que je suis Basaa mais je ne comprends pas correctement ma langue, à l'age que j'ai c-a-d 26 ans, il devient de plus en plus difficile d'apprendre la langue. Mais je le regrette beaucoup parce que je me rends compte à quel point la langue constitue une manière de percevoir et d'appréhender ce monde-ci. Les Basaa qui parlent correctement le Basaa sont des gens très fiers en général, ils ne se rabaissent pas n'importe comment, puis ils sont très courageux en général. Ce sont des valeurs que nous perdons lorsque nous ne nous frottons pas aux traditions et c'est dommage!
#103 29-10-2010 22:58
les bassa ont une chance d'etre tous bilingues.
c'est une oportunité pour prendre enfin le controle du pays. car vous le meriter.
moi je suis pas bassa mais je vous admire et vous respecte.
#102 25-10-2010 09:10
Je n'ai pas encore eu l'occasion de lire toute l'histoire Bassa écrite par le frère Konde. Ce que je peux dire c'est que les Bassa de Limbe continuent à faire leur histoire jusqu'à ce jour. Moi, je suis Président de ma famille Log-Ott depuis 20 anas à Limbe et j'avais été acteur politique ce qui nous avait permis de voter l'ex Député Charles Betow à l'Assemblée nationale du Cameroun. Depuis, les Bassa de limbe ont posé le problème de ''eleven province'', mais rien a été fait. Et pourquoi ?
#101 08-09-2010 18:58

you're very proud and convinced for your world perception. you wrote
"I thought it was easy to understand that there's history when talking about past events..."
Why don't you add: BASED ON WRITTINGS? Then you would be fidel to what you've learned. that's what Manmut Pem calls l'ècole de Mamadou et Bineta.
That school and way of thinking did not brought us further. Please suffer that there can be other perspectives of thinkings. and that's what we're promoting here on this site. You're wellcome my brother.
let us be free and view the world in another perspective, then will build a better bassa'a; cameroonian and african society based on our own thinkings, our own perception!
-5 #100 08-09-2010 15:46
I thought it was easy to understand that there's history when talking about past events...and can also have a history about an individual life which can be assimilated as a life story.

It just a matter of context; unfortunately, for you it just that hard to grab
When you lack arguments on the fundamental of the subject, you start dwelling more on the cosmetic.
+3 #99 08-09-2010 12:24

Please just be patient. The article´s been written and sent to the webmaster of "". Our brother will probably run it in the days or weeks ahead. "Patience is good."
+2 #98 08-09-2010 11:13
Moses, my dear
either are you blind nor deaf, you just don't want to see and understand.
On yr Post #91 you wrote "I don't make the history; even the history Professor doesn't make it"
an hour later you wrote in #97 "an individual make his own history; not alter history of a whole group of people..." What should we retain from you?

Notice that Dr Kondè and each people he mentionned on his book have chosen each individually to make their History. Each one had made his own history as well as the whole HISTORY of those of our brothers over there. they are making the History of Bassa'a ba Limbé.
-5 #97 08-09-2010 10:37
It's shameful to claim to be an indigenous of Limbe and yet you have no land there.
1- an indigenous doen't fight to be recognized so; he/she is known so
2-an indigenous always have land(Mboum ba sogo sogo), because it's his homeland. Your forebears wasn't land-grabers because the knew it wasn't theirs, they were there for a reason.
3-As far as I know, there's no law in Cameroon that forbid any citizen to run for office anywhere. That why you can found a bamileke member of parlement representing a district in Douala, or a Foulbe mayor in Douala...
So Mr Hongla, Bassaa living in Limbe can succeed in political arena renouncing to where they come from or trying to be considered indigenous. A Bassaa have that capacity.
@Nkaa, an individual make his own history; not alter history of a whole group of people. Maybe you misunderstood your father. It's unfortunate.
+3 #96 08-09-2010 10:17
@Moses, you could read from this link : . Read under European contacts, then you will discover that the Bakweris were not the indigenes of Limbe rather they settled like the Bassa ba Limbe community.
#95 08-09-2010 09:58
@ Mr Moses,
I think Dr Konde's problem lies in the fact that politically elected offices in Limbe are based on being an indigene. So the problem is this,When politically elected offices are not based on merit but on whether the person to be elected is an indigene or a settler, then people like the Dr Konde's will spring up.I'm sure many Cameroonian men who send their wives to the US (and not too long ago Ireland) to put to birth, do so because they know the baby will be given a US nationality and such a baby will have the right to run for the highest office in the Land. Now if the US was playing this settler/indigene politics that has pushed Dr Konde to do his research, I'm sure many women would prefer to give birth to their kids in their various villages.The issue Dr Konde was raising is not whether Limbe is Bakweri Land, but that the Bassa's in Limbe should not be considered as settlers, but indigenes.
#94 08-09-2010 09:50
what a confession, my dear Moses!
I now understain your position. If you were the son of my father you would hav had many problems in our childhood. my father always told us since the early childhood "you have to make the History and each of you people (we are 5 sons) will decide how his own history will be" meaning that we're just going to be what we choose to become. if we refuse to study we would have chosen that. Even Um Nyobe use to speech in that way during his meetings. with emphasis to the young generations who were attending to his meetings, according the Mongo Beti.

So my dear a Bassa'a, a Ngwélés man bassa'a has to make the History. we started thousends years ago by the Invasion of our Land in upper Egypt and we still go ahead
-5 #93 08-09-2010 09:40
Dr Konde, I do have an understanding of historical origins of Basssaa people; I have been stating that here over and over and actually been repeating myself; unless you have YOUR OWN theory or history.
It's not because you have no memory of Sanaga Maritime and the place does not feature in your dream (comment #89) that it going to be one of the place where Bassaa are from.
An indvidual claiming to be a Bassaa or beti or foulbe can also claim to be from another locality that is not historically known as a land of neither of those ethnic group; that's their right. But it doesn't CHANGE the the fact that there will always be specific regions, localities where these ethnic groups are associated with, places knowm to be their lands.
The identity of an ethic group doesn't revolve around an individual; it's the other way around.
+3 #92 08-09-2010 09:06
I'am with you!
But,one question please:Bassa-Cameroon,is thesame with Bassa of Liberia?
-3 #91 08-09-2010 08:24
Dr Konde, on your #88 comment you wrote: "...your limited, localized and nonexpansive..." I couldn't stretch the history to make my opinion unlimited, national and expansive. I don't make the history; even the history Professor doesn't make it.
The history places the Bassaa people in Sanaga Maritime/Nyong Ikelle and its their land; it doesn't denies that some Bassaa have been living in SW Cameroon just like anywhere else in the country.
Every Ethic group in Cameroon is placed( by history) somewhere and its known to be from that part of the country.
As a sociological principle, every ehtnic group is from somewhere when the people of that group over the history agree that they are from there and the rest of society agree that they are indeed from there. it apply to every ethnic group in Cameroon.
So, I'm not sure what expansion you expected with regards to my opinion. It just stated what the history is and has been over the years...
+2 #90 07-09-2010 22:56
Ms. Nonga, Bassa ba Limbe do not have land problems in Limbe. As the first settlers of sections of that town, the Bassa occupy some of the prime real estate in the center of Limbe Township. Our forebears were not land-grabbing people. Most were palm wine tappers and cocoyams cultivators. They were mostly contented with the little they had. We, their offspring, are ambitious, determined, and driven. We want more. But it is not land that we want; we want equal representation in the town that our forebears contributed to its making. Personally, I am not interested in politcs. But the Bassa of Limbe who are interested should be accorded the rights of full participation no different from the rights enjoyed by people who entered Limbe after them. I have amply documened this in "Bassa Antiquity in Contemporary Limbe".
+1 #89 07-09-2010 17:09
(#2) Moses, you emphasize the mythical origins of the Bassa and have no understanding of their historical origins and migrations. You are a Bassa of Sanaga Maritime, I am not. I have no memory of Sanaga Maritime and the place does not feature in my dreams. I understand your point of departure, which is the staple of our brethren who were brought up in village communities. Let me elaborate with an example: One of my cousins came from Douala to visit me in Limbe about two years ago and he, who had practically no property, not a franc in his name, was advising me on how to manage my property. That’s what you, Moses, are trying to do here. You are trying to define a Bassa “ngweles”, me, when you are perhaps not even a “man nem nkon” but a “balolo njel”. No real Bassa “ngweles” behaves like you. Ask your elders.
+1 #88 07-09-2010 17:05
(#1) Moses, your opinion is essentially pedestrian in the sense that it is not grounded in historical fact. In fact, it is limited, localized, and non-expansive. When does a migrating ethnic group, that splits up on occasion, have “a specific location where its members are from?” Where are the Bassa of Cameroon from? At what point do we acknowledge their origin? Ca. 3000 years ago in the Nile Valley? Or about or Ca. 1000 years ago from “Ngok Lituba”? Is it the Bassa historical origin from the Nile Valley or their mythically origin at “ngok lituba” that should be emphasized? Your insistence on lumping all Bassa in Cameroon as belonging to Sanaga Maritime is reductionist and irrational.

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