The bishop died in Duala at the age of 90. In recent years, he has worked tirelessly to restore peace in the English-speaking areas of the country.
In Cameroon this year, the Easter celebrations tasted like tears. The country’s only cardinal, Christian Wiyghan Tumi, died in a hospital in Douala on Saturday, April 3. In recent years, the bishops have been working hard to find solutions to the problems that have caused the English-speaking regions in the West to fall apart. Many faithful believers paid tribute to him during the Mass held in the Cathedral of St. Pierre and St. Paul in Douala on Sunday.
« He is 90 years old this year. The age to rest after serving God for so long. But it hurts! I thought he would stay with us for a few more years”, The 42-year-old Adèle Ebelle wore a long and perfect dress wrapped in it.Near her, her aunt Justin regrets « The departure of the envoy of God”. “Ten years ago, I wanted to divorce my husband. I even left home. The cardinal summoned us for a few weeks. He reconciled us. He is an extraordinary man”, Entrust this catholic “very much Exercise”.
Davidson Ateh, he, “It’s hard to believe that this simple, humble, and accessible person has gone.”. When the secretary general of the Diocesan Catholic Association read the news on social networks, he initially thought it was April Fools’ Day. “We know this will happen, but it’s not so fast. I’m sad. With him, we can definitely be in contact with God », He said. “It was a shock to me”, Means World africa MediumGR Samuel Kleda, Archbishop of Douala : “I am losing my father.”
Since the death of the cardinal, Cameroon and around the world have been offering gifts: church members, political leaders, diplomats, artists, faithful or completely anonymous people.We praise “Honesty Pastor”, This “Spiritual Advisor”, This “conscience” From Cameroon, “The indescribable peaceful man”… “May his departure be a sacrifice, so that peace can return to us”, Akere Muna, the former presidential candidate, was solicited in a tweet. Since the crisis broke out in the English-speaking Northwest and English-Southwest regions in 2016, Cardinal Tumi has worked tirelessly to restore calm.
In 2017, when the tension between the separatists fighting for the independence of the country and the Cameroonian defense and security forces turned into an armed conflict, the bishop decided to take action. Starting in 2018, the man who served as Archbishop of Douala in 1991 until his retirement in 2009 gathered around his religious leaders and established the English General Assembly (CGA). The goal is to find a final solution to the war by organizing an inclusive dialogue between the government and the separatists. But the existing power distrusted the pastor, who was unwilling to criticize human rights violations and corruption, and therefore did not allow him to be arrested.
Christian Wiyghan Tumi has repeatedly invited Paul Biya, 88, to be President of Cameroon since 1982.Some government supporters even call it “Separatists”. However, the bishop said to himself “Always be a Federalist.” “This is my belief”, He repeated World africa In May 2019. The Secessionists doubted his relationship with the government. The cardinal was even kidnapped for 24 hours in the northwest region of his ancestral home on November 5, 2020. “Despite this brutal behavior, he never harbored a grudge, Highlighted by CGA spokesperson Elie Smith. He always prays for everyone. He is a tolerant man who works for peace. “
At the Cathedral of Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul, Simone Juong, a native of Southwestern English, wishes to believe in the death of the cardinal “Holy Saturday is the grace of God, the grace of God”. The six-year-old mother has been refugees in Douala since 2018 and she has given up everything: her cocoa fields, her house and her food store. In this conflict, she lost her brother and two brother-in-laws. This conflict has claimed more than 3,500 lives and caused 700,000 people to flee the country. « In his memory, Paul Biya must resolve this crisis. Finally, organize this inclusive dialogue with the separatists that the cardinal desperately wants, She hopes.
On May 28, 2019, when our interview came to a close, the visitors squeezed in front of his house. The cardinal sang the song he learned in elementary school, and he said that this song already exists. “Forgery” : “I swear, my motherland/to serve my country, above me, my love”. “I love Cameroon. This is where I feel at home. My only goal is to restore peace there”, He concluded.