A Cameroonian cryptocurrency trader, Paul Fonlon, has urged the Ambazonia Secessionist Movement to adopt bitcoin as their national currency when they eventually secede from Cameroon. The remarks come at a time when tension is rife following the buildup after the flopped independence declaration that occurred a couple of weeks ago resulting in a number of deaths.
The Ambazonia Secessionist Movement is an independence movement that seeks to have Ambazonia secede from Cameroon. The movement began in 1984 after the French violated the 1961 unification agreement by changing the country’s name to Republic of Cameroon from the Union Republic of Cameroon.
The split seeks to have the Anglophone speaking parts of Cameroon unite as one and form their own nation. The predominant Anglophone parts in the west of the country is home to 3.6 million people out of the country’s population of 24 million people. The movement was rekindled late last year following a strike by teachers and lawyers who were against the move by the predominant Francophone government to deploy French-speaking teachers and judges in English speaking regions.
Freedom and Affluence
The Ambazonia people already have their flag and held demonstrations on October 1 in a bid to declare their own independence. And as Ambazonia seeks to become the 55th country in the African continent, Fonlon, who is an Ambazonia secessionist activist, believes that using bitcoin as a national currency will give them freedom and affluence that has eluded Southern Cameroonians. This is as a result of them being marginalized by their government.
“We should avoid the path of terrible monetary policies like inflation to ensure that our people enjoy economic liberty which has eluded us for more than half a century,” said Fonlon.
According to Fonlon, monetary policy has been one of the mechanisms used by their oppressors in Yaounde to suppress, undermine and control them and that it shouldn’t be repeated in an independent Ambazonia.
He went on to add, “Monetary policy is a powerful system government around the world use to make people poorer and it’s no different story when it comes to our situation. If our leaders really care for our people and that’s why they’re leading a revolution to free us, then we need a solid monetary policy based on Blockchain and cryptocurrency after independence or our freedom will just be insignificant.”
Financial Freedom and Inclusion
According to Fonlon, cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin present an ideal and cost-effective avenue through which most Southern Cameroonians who have no access to financial services or bank accounts can enjoy financial inclusion and be brought into the financial mainstream. In his opinion, banks shouldn’t be built in the region as they will only be ruled and governed by politicians and government agents.
“Financial Inclusion is now easier for everyone if we’ll adopt Blockchain Technologies instead of trying to achieve that through Central government,” Paul stated.
Furthermore, World Bank studies have shown that for every 1000 adults in Cameroon, only 65 people have a bank account.
With cryptocurrencies and the blockchain technology gaining momentum in most countries in the world, they present a good opportunity for those in the developing countries to gain inclusion in the global economy. The lack of third parties gives people the financial freedom to make cross-border transactions at reasonable fees.
And as the Ambazonia people continue to fight for their independence, we await to see whether bitcoin and other digital currencies will be adopted as the national currency. If they go through with it, they will be the first country in Africa to do that.