By Francis Tim Mbom
Thirty-eight-year-old business man and graduate from the University of Buea, Godden Ndenge Zama, has declared his candidacy for Chairman of the Social Democratic Front in view of the party’s upcoming convention.
Zama, who has been the Limbe Electoral District Chairman for over a decade today, is considered within the Limbe constituency as one of the most valiant and uncompromising political leaders when it comes to defending the interest of the SDF, in particular, and that of hapless Cameroonians, in general.
His stoicism and unyielding resolve to defend the interest of the SDF, especially as demonstrated during the 2013 Parliamentary and Municipal elections and 2018 Presidential election, gave the CPDM party and others tough times whenever there was any national election.
By dint of his stance to stand for the people, he was yanked and banged in the Kondengui maximum security prison in early 2017, where he spent some eight months in detention.
It is from this background that Zama, on Saturday, August 5, during a press conference in Limbe, made public his decision to gun for the top job of the SDF party as Chairman.
His declaration was coming some seven days after the burial of the emblematic Ni John Fru Ndi, who had served the Party as Chairperson since May 26, 1990, when the SDF was launched in Bamenda.
“As Chairman, I want to accompany you; I want to lead from in front so that this great national party can take its rightful place in the Cameroonian nation and finally deliver on its huge promise,” Zama said.
Zama paid glowing tribute to Ni John Fru Ndi and all the founding fathers of the SDF, among them Nyoh Wakai, Siga Assanga, Albert Mukong, who laid a firm foundation for the party that was held, from its birth as the beckon of hope for a better future for Cameroonians.
But the battle by the SDF, since 1990, to bring down the Biya regime that has been blamed for all the hardships and difficulties faced by the well over 28 million Cameroonians never succeeded.
Zama, during his Saturday outing, stated that he was ready to do what it takes to give Cameroonians that kind of dignified life, which his party had promised to give them when it set out in 1990.
“The Social Democratic Front is the very symbol of the struggles of a people to live in freedom and dignity…The goal of this movement is to build a party that can ensure that not just our militants but the entire Cameroonian nation can live a dignified life. No nation can talk of growth and development if its citizens can’t be offered a dignified live.”
Zama’s drive to win the top job of the SDF might be easy to say but, at the end of the day, it’s going to be a herculean task.
Before Ni John Fru Ndi passed on, the SDF had already announced the holding of an elective convention that was going to lead to the election of a new chairperson to lead the party. Fru Ndi had already declared his intentions to stand down when the time comes.
And, for long now, there have been some prominent names of the probable successors to the position of this top job, with the current Vice Chair, Osih Joshua, being the most likely candidate. Before Hon. Jean Michel Nintcheu, one of the vocal voices in Parliament and the SDF Chair for the Littoral, was axed from the Party in February, he was also a top contender to replace Fru Ndi.
Thus, there is every reason to say that Zama’s task to replace Fru Ndi can’t be an easy one.
However, he said that the SDF of today needs someone who is nervy and resilient enough to be able to rekindle the spirits of the 1990s SDF, where the Party rested with the grassroots and not with its leaders in Yaounde. He, during a question-and-answer session, said his drive was to carry the party back to the grassroots and let the power, in effect, be given back to the people and not otherwise.