Does Celestin Djamen Want To Use Momo’s Strategy To Enter Government?
By Joe Dinga Pefok
One of the 11 newly-created political parties in the country, the Patriotic and Republican Alliance Party, commonly known by the French acronym, APAR, is that of Celestin Djamen.
Djamen was initially a militant of the SDF and had an eye for everything. When he was in France in 2004 he wanted to run for the post of National Chairman of the SDF, even though party records showed that he had not been paying his party dues.
A few years ago, he returned to Cameroon and settled in Douala. Though he continued to aspire for top posts in the SDF, he was faced with the problem that he was not paying his party dues. Questions were also being raised in the party and even by other parties about his source of income because he was seen to have neither job nor business.
Djamen Enters NEC
Meanwhile, thanks to the intervention of the SDF National Chairman, Ni John Fru Ndi, Djamen later became a member of the National Executive Committee, NEC, of the SDF. Also thanks to the 1st Vice National Chairman of the SDF, Hon Joshua Nabamgi Osih, Djamen became an SDF councillor of the Douala I Council in 2013. Osih had to intervene at the last minute to pay Djamen’s caution fee of FCFA 50,000, for the municipal election, as he said he had no money and had even, out of frustration, wanted to leave the SDF for Hanadou Mustapha’s ANDP.
While an SDF councillor of Douala I Council that was being run by the CPDM that won the 2013 Municipal Elections by simple majority, Djamen was often accused in the SDF of being too close to the CPDM. He came close to being sacked from the SDF 2017, during campaigns for the election to the post of Littoral Regional Chairman of the party, for which he had declared his candidature.
It was discovered that Djamen had scandalously addressed letters of appeals for campaign funds to several CPDM elite, including the then Government Delegate to the Douala City Council, Dr Fritz Ntone Ntone, from whom he allegedly received the money. Worst still, he had used a letter headed paper of the SDF.
Meanwhile, Djamen was disqualified from running for any post in NEC at the Elective National Conversation of the SDF in February 2018, because, even after becoming councillor, he had still not been paying his party dues.
Djamen Quits SDF For CRM
Meanwhile, soon after the SDF National Convention, Djamen left the SDF for Kamto’s CRM, where he was co-opted into the National Executive Bureau to occupy the same post he held earlier in SDF’s NEC.
Djamen did not hide his real intention as to why he jumped over to CRM. He openly declared that he wanted to be the Mayor of Douala V Council, a Bamileke-dominated municipality where CRM was likely to win.
Djamen had relocated to Douala V Municipality so that he could qualify to run in the municipal elections. But his dreams were shattered when, at the last minute, the leader of CRM announced that the party would boycott the legislative and municipal elections which took place on February 9, 2020.
Djamen was the only two CRM officials that dared to openly criticise the boycott decision. Out of frustration, he left CRM and has now created his party.
There have been repeated allegations that Celestin Djamen’s target in creating a party is to enter the CPDM Government, and that his strategy is to apply the same strategy that the leader of PADDEC, Jean de Dieu Momo, used to enter the Government. That is, to do dirty work for the regime by specialising in attacking the National President of CRM, Prof Maurice Kamto, in particular, and the opposition in general.
Djamen has already bashed the group of seven opposition parties that include the CRM, SDF, CDU, PCRN, UMS among others, that have been meeting in Yaounde under the coordination of the CDU leader, Mme Tomaino Ndam Njoya, to brainstorm on common proposals to table to the reform of the Electoral Code. Djamen has also ridiculed CRM by telling the party militants that the reform of the Electoral Code is, according to him, a legislative reform that is supposed to be done in Parliament, and not in the quarter by noisemakers.
Asked at a press conference whether he would be ready to join the CPDM Government if invited by President Biya, Djamen would not give a clear response, saying instead that it will depend on certain conditions.
Meanwhile, last May 1 on Canal 2 TV, Djamen was reminded that his critics are questioning how he would be able to run his party, where he has no known source of income or revenue.
Djamen did not answer the question but rather attacked CRM militants whom, he said, were those asking such questions. Interesting enough, Djamen joined what CPDM militants have been doing, by calling CRM militants Talibans.