By Tikum Mbah Azonga
Our brother Akaba Ajitum asked whether I am Bambui, as a matter of genuine concern and not a challenge, I must say .I welcome that and below is my response:
1. BAMBUI BY BIRTH
I was born in Baforkum (Ala-akubeuh) which according to the beautiful write up posted on this forum by our brother, Tobby Neba, is one of the (five) “sub-chiefdoms of Manju, Mallam, Matula-ah, Fingeh, and Ala-akubeh.” I grew up in Baforkum with my parents who lie buried there today, in our compound currently inhabited by my elder sister, Ma Martina Ncha Mbah (who incidentally was a classmate of Mr Ephraim Amungwa`s, uncle of the present Fon of Bambui, at N.A. School). Our compound is being supervised by my Uncle Mr Victor Mbaku and overseen by the Chief of Baforkum. My father worked at the Agric Farm in Bambui from 1940-1984 when he died. I am his successor and a notable in Baforkum. Pa Geh who has a very large following of Bambui children was an elder brother to my mother.One of my father`s best friends was a certain Pa Forba from either Ntemban or Fulieh. His children and I interacted well with each other. Unfortunately I we lost touch with each other over the years. If anyone reading this knows how I can reconnect, I would be grateful.
2. TOGETHER WITH THE FON OF BAMBUI
When Yaounde hosted the annual jamboree of the Bambui Cultural and Devekopment Association of some years ago with the Fon of Bambui in attendance, I played a key role in terms of organization. I was instrumental in obtaining CRTV coverage of the even as at the time I was a full time employee of the corporation. I also got Bambui onto the TV programme, THE MONDAY SHOW. When in full view of everyone the Fon was given the honour to cut the cake with the Queen who accompanied him, he took everyone by surprise by basically saying that he would like that honour to go to one of his most distinguished sons. And so it was that it went down into the annals of history that it was I who cut the cake with the Queen. I once more thank the Fon for that recognition.
3. INSIDE TUCUDA
When the Tubah Union of Cultural and Development Associations was revamped some six or so years ago in Bambui with Dr. Mundi elected President, I was elected Publicity Officer and specifically counted as one of the statistics from Bambui. Just before the election took place, Tubah sons and daughter s were given some time to congregate under the canopy of the four main villages and plan their strategy. I was in the Bambui group along with other sons and daughters of Baforkum.
4. A BAMBUI PRINCESS AT NACHO
When I was principal of Nacho College in Bamenda from 1999-2001, I offered the palace of Bambui a 100 per cent scholarship so that the palace would send me a child to educate without the palace paying fee for the five years in the first cycle, as a way of returning something back to my own community. The Fon effectively gave me a little girl whom I enrolled in Form One. Unfortunately, relations between the prorpietors of Nacho and me turned sour and I had to leave. As a result, that plan disintegrated.
5. ARE YOU THINKING OF BAFORCHU?
I am also Baforchu by virtue of the fact that my parents were both born there and I have a large family there on both sides. I am also largely accepted there as a son of the soil. But both the Fon of Bambui and that of Baforchu who is a cousin of mine, know about about my “dual nationality”. In fact, some four years ago or so, when I invited the Fon of Bambui to the funeral of my uncle (father`s junior brother ), HRH did me the greatest honour and turned up heavily accompanied. His presenc e scored high points for me. While the Fon of Bambui sat with the Fon of Baforchu, the former joked by telling the Fon of Baforchu: ” Mokorokah (III), look, you know Mr Tikum has one leg in Bambui and one leg in Baforchu. I accept that but if you are not careful, I will drag him so that he has both legs in Bambui and no leg in Baforchu!” That was a joke that went down very well because we all laughed.
6. A GOLD MINE FOR US IN BAMBUI
Because of that Baforchu connection, we can bring a lot of good things to Bambui. If we have the fundraisng event as I suggested to Bambui Village Council Chairman, Mr Nchami, as a way of refurbishing the dilapidated Bambui Palace, and I invite my Baforchu family to come and support us, they will come. By extension, I can also invite the Batibo and Metta communities and they will come. This diversity can be a richness for us in Bambui.
Long live our Bambui!