why jihad was successful in northern cameroon
- The military weak pagan tribes of Northern Cameroon were not united. Inter-tribal quarrels and wars were common between them. This introduced jealousie and made it difficult for the tribes to cooprate. This explains why Bata villages were raided and captured without a counter attack or assistance from other groups.
- Adama’s Calvary and foot soldiers were better organized and armed. They had better weapons such as superior horses, swords, poisoned arrows, Charms etc These Fulanis were more experienced in warfare because they came in contact with hostile groups as they migrated from Futa Toro, Senegal to north Cameroon and had to fight their way through.
- Adama personaly commanded his troops as he did in the Mandara Campaign. Inspired by the blessings from Dan Fodio and aware of the importance of his mission, Adama distributed flags to competent warriors who were made masters of specific war districts. The success of the jihads could be attributed to Adama’s effective leadership quaities and the trust the Fulbe placed on him.
- The massive support Adama received from the Hausa mercenaries, Fulani kin and Kiths, landless youths and tax payers contributed to his victory. These groups were against tbe oppressive policies af the pagan aristocrats. To these oppressed groups, the jihads were a liberation movement which promised them a better future.
- Adama and his folllowers were quite determined to achieve their objectives. Adama also provided them with a strong incentive by asking each flag bearer to make himself Lamido in his conquered district. With this advantage, the warriors became determined to go far with the revolution because they were sure of potical gains
- The absence of barriers to Calvary warfare in north Cameroon (savannah region) made accessibalty very easy for the horse raiders. In fact, the Fulani horsemen were very efficient in the savannah region. As a result, the jihads were bound to be succesful in this area.
- Modibo Adama in preaching the gospel of Uthman Dan Fodio had infused his supporters with much zeal and fanatism. Convinced of purity and righteoueness of their cause, Modibo Adema and his followers fought with zeal and enthusiasm which the bewildered pegans couid not match. This was fired by the belief that a Muslim who dies fighting a holy war goes to paradise.
The fact that in the previous centuries the Fulani bad spread widely throughout the whole of Northern Cameroon was strategically advantageous to the Fulani jihadists. The consequences were that during the time of the jihads the local Kirdi rulers had to deal not only with foreign invaders but also with well established and organized groups within their states. This situatiom complicated their task and facilitated that of Modibo Adama and his Fulani warriors.