On September 30 and October 1, 2021, UMass Dartmouth will host “Quest for Peace & Justice: An International Conference on the Decolonization Processes of Former UN Trusteeship Territories.”
The conference, organized by Professor John Fobanjong and sponsored by the Southern Cameroons Peoples Organization, the Department of Political Science, and the Black Studies Program at UMass Dartmouth, will bring together intellectuals, peace advocates, and policymakers to share thoughts, ideas, and recommendations on the flawed decolonization process of the former UN Trusteeship Territory of Southern Cameroons.
Despite an overwhelming 64-23 vote at the United Nations authorizing independence for the territory, Southern Cameroons remains to this day a territory without independence and sovereign rights. On November 30, 2017, the French-speaking Republic of Cameroun declared war on the territory. Appeals from the US, the UN, and other international policymakers for a peaceful resolution of the conflict have repeatedly fallen on deaf ears.
At the 50th anniversary of the founding of the AU in 2013, African leaders admitted that the biggest challenge facing the continent was violent conflict. In their resolve not to pass the burden down to future generations, they adopted a “Silencing the Guns in Africa by 2020” Resolution as part of the continent’s developmental blueprint for “Agenda 2063.” The Resolution was adopted with the hope that it was going to prevent genocide, rid the continent of wars and help achieve a conflict-free Africa.
The 2020 timeline has come and passed, and the guns are still not silenced.
The event will bring together experts to discuss recommendations and possible solutions to create lasting peace in Southern Cameroons, and the continent of Africa.
Scheduled to start at 10 a.m. and end at 5 p.m. for both days, the event will be held in the UMass Dartmouth Library Grand Reading Room. Participants willing to participate by Zoom are welcome to use the following links to register:
Also featured during “Quest for Peace & Justice" is a 12 to 1:30 p.m., panel titled "The Global COVID-19 Crisis: Causes, Consequences, and Policies." This panel will feature a unique panel of officials from the United Nations, Medecins Sans Frontierers, Southcoast Health, and public health officials from the City of New Bedford. The symposium’s goal is to create a dynamic, cross-disciplinary conversation among all participants to understand the current COVID-19 crisis better to develop long-term strategies for potential future global public health crises.