Tensions rise between Catholic Church and traditional rulers in West region

A dispute between Catholic Church leaders and traditional rulers in Cameroon’s West Region has escalated, highlighting deep-seated divisions over religious and cultural practices.

The conflict centers on a recent statement by Bishop Paul Lontsie Keune, who accused traditional rulers of persecuting the Roman Catholic Church in the Menoua division. In response, a video of the bishop’s remarks has gone viral on social media, further inflaming tensions.

In a joint statement signed by 15 traditional leaders from the West Regional Council, the bishop’s comments were condemned as ‘arsonist and disrespectful.’ The statement accused the church of provocative behavior, including the use of traditional symbols and attributes in religious ceremonies.

As a result, the council announced a ban on traditional rulers from entering Catholic churches and restricted the use of traditional objects within church premises. The move underscores a growing rift between religious and traditional authorities in the region.

Despite t
he standoff, the council expressed a willingness to reconcile, contingent upon the bishop acknowledging fault and issuing an apology.

The clash between tradition and religion in Cameroon’s West Region reflects broader cultural tensions, with both sides entrenched in their respective positions.

Source: Cameroon News Agency