By Boris Esono Nwenfor (Cameroon)
The National Union for Democracy and Progress, NUDP says it is splitting with the ruling Cameroon People’s Democratic Party, CPDM ahead of the upcoming Municipal and Legislative elections that are reportedly scheduled for this year.
The president of the party, Bello Bouba Maigari, a long-time ally of President Biya’s CPDM party made the declaration at his party’s headquarters in Yaounde during a New Year wish ceremony.
According to the party chairman, the decision to abandon the CPDM and go alone for upcoming elections is to gain control of more council and gain more seats in parliament. At present, the NUDP party has a total of 6 seats put of a total of 180 seats at the National Assembly, with a hope of gaining more seats at the upcoming elections.
He told the press at the gathering that, the NUDP intends to galvanise its resources and make giant political exploits in the anticipated elections.
At the moment, it is unclear if the separation is going to be a permanent one or just a temporary affair to allow the party participate in the elections. This is due to the fact that, in last year’s presidential election in which the ruling CPDM party won a “contested” landslide victory, the NUDP were strongly behind the president in his efforts to win another seven year mandate. There have however been reports of grumblings with some followers of the NUDP demanding more independence, a wish which seems to have been respected by their president.
Bello Bouba Maigari (born 1947) was the 2nd Prime Minister of Cameroon from 6 November 1982 to 22 August 1983 and has been the National President of the National Union for Democracy and Progress (UNDP) since January 1992. Although he was a key opposition leader for much of the 1990s, he has participated in the government since December 1997; he was Minister of State for Industrial and Commercial Development from 1997 to 2004, Minister of State for Post and Telecommunications from 2004 to 2009, and Minister of State for Transport in 2009. Since December 2011, he has been Minister of State in charge of Tourism and Leisure.