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Nasako BesingiNasako Besingi
 Director, Struggle to Economize Future Environment (SEFE)

"SEFE seeks to futhersome the protection of coastal aquatic ecosystems with consumming focus on mangrove ecosystem. As a grassroots oriented outfit, SEFE, in collaboration with the local communities, carryout various aspects activities, management, research,dialoque, empowering and coaching local people to embrass the precept of sustainable livelihood. In SEFE, we also carryout advocacy as away of promoting environmental justice and maintaining aquatic ecosystems equillibrium. Our community have your say (CHYS) initiative allows the communities to make inputs in our projects from project conception to evaluation, thereby giving them ownership and responsibility for the protection of natural resources while ensuring ecosystems balance."  -- Nasako Besingi

Nasako Besingi is a member of the famed Nasako family which helped found the Ékpè ‘leopard’ society, whose lodges are the same lodges found in Cuban Abakwa. Each Abakwa potencia or lodge has a Nasako, now a position in the lodge dedicated to divining.

Nasako Beringi struggled against the Herakles Farm attempted land theft of 270 sq miles (73,000 hectars) with Greenpeace and other allies. Herakles was gradually cut down to size and its activities stopped with the suicide of its CEO in December, 2013.

Cameroon palm oil campaigner arrested in crackdown on activists  9/29/2017 Guardian: "A prominent campaigner against palm oil plantations has been arrested amid a growing crackdown on environmental and human rights activists in Cameroon, according to local lawyers and NGOs. Nasako Besingi, who has led opposition to a US-funded 73,000 hectare farm in a biodiverse rainforest, is among more than 100 individuals who have been detained during an escalation of tension between the predominantly French-speaking authorities and the country’s large English-speaking minority. Supporters of Besingi claim the authorities are using the “anglophone crisis” to put pressure on the campaigner, who has been jailed, threatened, and sued on several previous occasions."

Nasako Besingi arbitrarily arrested and detained incommunicado  9/29/2017 Front Line Defenders: "On 25 September 2017, at around 6.30am, local police officers, gendarmes and army officers entered Nasako Besingi’s office, located next to his home, and arrested the human rights defender. The officers searched Nasako Besingi’s office and confiscated documents, a laptop, his phone, SIM cards as well as the human rights defender’s identity card and passport. Following the search, Nasako Besingi was taken by car to the Gendarmerie brigade in Mundemba but was never informed of the charges against him. Twenty minutes after his arrival at the Gendarmerie brigade, he was seen being taken by car from the brigade to an unknown location."

Take Action. Support Nasako Besingi. Letter to send by email or regular mail to the President and Minister of Justice in Cameroon.

Nasako Besingi arrested by the government of Cameroon

We receive this note from un calabari:

Subject: Re: With thanks, from Kalaba'
Date: 2017-09-25 05:56
From: Ngando Olubi <> [_AT_ = @]

Mr Besingi Nasako, Director of SEFE was arrested this morning by the forces of law & order in his office in Mundemba, Ndian Division, Cameroon. Sources on the spot say his office was ramshackled as the forces of law & order were looking for documents/materials patterning to the ongoing 'Southern Cameroons' struggle. Mr Besingi Nasako has been very vocal against the abductions in the North-West & South-West Regions by 'La Republique du Cameroun' as he'll always put it. Today Mr Besingi Nasako himself has become a victim of the same circumstance. We wish the international community gives his abduction the attention it deserves.

Molla Ngando,
Tell: +237662996468

Nasako Besingi arrestado por el gobierno de Cameroon, 25/9/17

Recibimos esta carta de un carabali:

Asunto: Re: Gracias, de Kalaba '
Fecha: 2017-09-25 05:56
De: Ngando Olubi <> [_AT_ = @]

El Sr. Besingi Nasako, Director de SEFE fue arrestado esta mañana por las fuerzas de orden público en su oficina en Mundemba, División Ndian, Camerún. Fuentes sobre el terreno dicen que su oficina fue destartalada como las fuerzas de la ley estaban buscando documentos / materiales patrón de la lucha en curso "Camerún del Sur". El Sr. Besingi Nasako ha sido muy expresivo en contra de los secuestros en las Regiones del Noroeste y del Suroeste por "La Republique du Cameroun", como siempre lo dirá. Hoy, el propio Sr. Besingi Nasako se ha convertido en víctima de la misma circunstancia. Deseamos que la comunidad internacional otorgue a su secuestro la atención que merece.

Molla Ngando,
Cuenta: +237662996468


Nasako Besingi takes on Heracles Farms, 8/15/13

As can be seen from the articles below, Nasako Besingi is well known in international green circles for his defense of his homeland against the new plantocracy that seeks to seize large swaths of Cameroonian lands that sustains 45,000 people, including his Nasako family. He is an important figure in that family and was one of the organizers of the Nasako Festival 2012. The Nasako are one of the originators of Ékpè in Calabar, Nigeria and Cameroon. Ékpè lodges are the same lodges found in Cuban Abakwa, a remarkable case of cultural survival in the midst of the slave trade holocaust.

Email from Nasako Besingi,  Director, Struggle to Economize Future Environment (SEFE)top

Date: Mon, 12 Sep 2011 01:22:10 -0700 (PDT)
From: Nasako Besingi <>
Subject: Re: Open Letter to RSPO and WWF: Palm oil monocultures will never be sustainable

Thank you so much for the attention on this very serious matter. We are glad to hear that you are also planning to support us in opposing this palm oil plantation proposed in a sensitive ecological and hydrological area with rainfall round the year. We look forward to working with you all and remain disposed to provide any information that you may need at any time. The companies involve are in the USA.



Mr. Nasako Besingi, Director
Struggle to Economize Future Environment (SEFE)
P.O. Box 40, Mundemba, Ndian Division, Cameroon
mobile: +237 7513 6000
SEFE seeks to futhersome the protection of caostal aquatic ecosystems with consumming focus on mangrove ecosystem. As a grassroots oriented outfit, SEFE, in collaboration with the local communities carryout various aspects activities, management, research,dialoque, empowering and coaching local people to embrass the precept of sustainable livelihood. In SEFE, we also carryout advocacy as away of promoting environmental justice and maintaining aquatic ecosystems equillibrium. Our community have your say (CHYS) initiative allows the communities to make inputs in our projects from project conception to evaluation, thereby giving them ownership and responsibility for the protection of natural resources while ensuring ecosystems balance. 


The life and death of a master of the universe: How the suicide of a Blackstone unit CEO shows the difficulties of doing well and doing good.  5/28/2014 CNBC: "Six months after Wrobel's death, the status of Herakles Farms is unclear. No additions to the news section of its website have been made since May 2013. Numerous messages to the emails listed on the site and other employees were not returned. The only number listed, to a field office in Cameroon, was out of service. An operator for 277 Park Ave., the company's former New York City headquarters, said Herakles left the building in July 2013. Herakles had agreed to decrease the size of its palm oil farms with the Cameroonian government last year following a suspension of activities. All for Africa was also shut down in 2013, according to Noella Coursaris, whose Georges Malaika Foundation was one of the group's first grantees."

U.S. palm oil company fined $4.6m in discrimination suit  1/8/2014 Mongabay: "Herakles Farms, an American agribusiness company, has been ordered to pay $4.6 million by a court in Cameroon over alleged discrimination in its hiring practices, reports APA. Herakles, which was recently awarded 20,000 hectares of land in southwestern Cameroon for oil palm plantations, allegedly dismissed Loxly Epie from his position as president of financial operations at Sithe Global Sustainable Oils Cameroon (SGSOC), the company’s local subsidiary. A judge in Limbe, Cameroon, ruled the dismissal was illegal, noting that Epie’s replacement — an Australian — had no experience in accounting or management."

Cameroon Corruption Is A Suicide Angel  12/28/2013 Modern Ghana: "An American businessman (May his soul rest in peace) landed in Cameroon and bribed his way right to the Presidency to be granted a land concession. His initial request was to be given 73,086 hectares for 99 years. Poor Bruce Wrobel claimed he was going to grow oil palm trees. Whatever he wanted to do with this land is not my focus now. I am only surprised that he caused the whole administration of two divisions and one ministry to hearken to his corrupt call. Beer, cartons of fish and tons of rice were distributed freely in communities around Mundemba, Toko and Nguti. Herakles boys went far with their cynicism to subject communities to surgical operations in makeshift theaters in the villages under insalubrious conditions. A Dr. Isidore Timti Scholarship scheme was launched to win the hearts of communities hosting the proposed lands for Herakles Farms. All these schemes were conceived to ease Herakles Farms' infiltration of the communities. I coined the term soft corruption to describe the type of imbedded corruption which cannot be unveiled and proven in a court of law. Once more, Bruce Wrobel's boys were dispatched to seek me out from the University of Buea to face defamation charges. I eluded them by carrying my laptop, my which is my media house, hence cyberspace to Nyen."

Former Blackstone unit exec Bruce Wrobel dies  12/10/2013 Farm Land Grab: "More recently, Wrobel was CEO of both Global Alumina Corporation, which worked on mining in Guinea, and Herakles Farms, which had sought to build palm oil farms in Cameroon. Herakles was forced to stop production in May 2013 because of pressure from local residents and environmental activists like Greenpeace and Oakland Institute. Herakles and Global Alumina did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Wrobel was also active in charity through All for Africa, which he chaired."

Herakles Farms releases public statement: Operations suspended  5/21/2013 Palm Watch – Africa: "Herakles Farms (also known as SG-SOC in Cameroon) (“Company”), a United States-based agriculture company with operations in Ghana and Cameroon, today, announced that it has suspended work in Cameroon in response to an order it received from the Government of Cameroon’s Ministry of Forestry & Wildlife (MINFOF). The order requests that the Company cease preparing land near its Talangaye nursery, the resumption of activities “being subject to a declaration of public usefulness made to the zone where your entire project is located.” The order comes at a time when the Company’s main activity is the transfer of young trees from the nurseries to their permanent places in the field near the village of Talangaye. The Company had obtained permission to proceed and always has and will comply fully and transparently with government regulations in force. The Company hopes to understand and resolve these actions by the MINFOF."

The Impact of Land Acquisition on Food Sovereignty: Herakles Farms in Cameroon  4/24/2013 Palm Watch Africa: By Jaff Bamenjo, RELUFA, JH Cameroon and Nasako Besingi, Director, Struggle to Economize Future Environment in Cameroon (SEFE)

Land Grabbing Looms: New Palm Oil Plantation Threatens Cameroon's Rainforest  2/22/2013 Huff Post: "It seems strange that I should have to travel thousands of miles to Washington, D.C. to get clarity on the fate of my land and community in Cameroon. But Herakles Farms, the American company threatening to destroy an area of rainforest where roughly 14,000 people currently live, myself included, is based here in the U.S."

Challenging year ends in hope for Cameroonian environmental activist  12/19/2012 Greenpeace: "This award I receive not only in my personal capacity, but rather on behalf of those who have worked alongside me, within the community as well as further afield,” he said. “I wish that our struggle against illegal land grabbing will continue, because we believe that the current location of the Herakles Farms’ palm oil project in the middle of environmentally sensitive areas will have far reaching negative impacts on the local human population, wildlife and botanical biodiversity.” Greenpeace agrees. And we’ll continue working alongside Nasako into the New Year until this project is stopped."

CAMEROON: Campaigners oppose industrial palm oil plantation  12/14/2012 IRIN: "The plantation will economically displace approximately 25,000 people and put at risk many others who depend on that land for small-scale food production, hunting, and non-timber forest products. Thus, the net impact on employment will actually be negative. This is not a fair deal," Nasako Besingi, one of the campaigners against the plantation, told IRIN."

Civil Society Accuses Herakles Farms of sabotaging Biya  12/13/2012 Kumba News: "The accusations have been voiced by Nasako Besingi Managing Director of the civil society organization Struggle to Economise Future Environment( SEFE) which has engaged in a battle to resist the palm plantation project of Herakles Farms(HF) in Ndian Ndivision hinging its argument on environmental reasons. The Guardians Post Caught up with Nasako in its Kumba Bureau Monday November 19, 2012 a few days after he and five others were released from detention in Mudemba."

Cameroun: Récompensé pour sa lutte en faveur du foncier équitable  12/13/2012 Journal du Cameroun: "Nasako Besingi a reçu le prix TAIGO 2012, de l’acteur non étatique pour son combat contre l’accaparement des terres dans la région du Sud-ouest."

Nasako Besingi wins a prize for opposing SGSOC project  12/12/2012 All Voices: "The Director of the NGO, Struggle to Economize Future Environment (SEFE) Nasako BESINGI is the winner of the 2012 TAIGO non-state actor. Nasako becomes the first winner in this category since the competition was launched in 2011. The prize to non-state actors rewards the commitment of Mr. BESINGI for transparency and governance, particularly in the context of his struggle to publicize the inconsistencies of the SGSOC project and the violation of Cameroon land laws and international conventions that characterize it."

Campaign Update– Cameroon: Opposition to Herakles Repressed  12/11/2012 Cultural Survival: "Nasako Besingi, the director of Struggle to Economise Future Environment (SEFE), one of our coalition partners on the ground in Cameroon, was arrested November 14th along with five others in the town of Mundemba, Cameroon.Local and international pressure was successful in releasing the activists after being held for two days with no charge."

Cameroon: Thwarting the VPA’s promise … ... Yet taking a step forward  12/1/2012 FERN: "Implementation of the VPA between the EU and Cameroon, ratified in August 2011 is being complemented by a decree1published on 9 November 2012 by the Minister of Forests and Fauna of Cameroon (MinFoF): the decree suspends the exploitation, throughout the entire country, of two precious tropical species, bubinga and wenge."

Cameroon: Arbitrary arrest of and judicial harassment against Mr. Nasako Besingi and four SEFE collaborators  11/29/2012 World Organisation Against Torture: "According to the information received, in the morning of November 14, 2012, over 15 heavily armed Gendarme officers led by Brigade Commandant Luc Evoundou raided the premises of SEFE in Mundemba, where over 50 members of the local population had come to get T-shirts that were prepared for a peaceful campaign against the company Sithe Global Sustainable Oils Cameroon (SGSOC), a local subsidiary of the New York based company HERAKLES Farms, and its establishment of a controversial large-scale palm oil plantation on 73,000 hectares in the area[1]. On this same day, the Governor of the southwest region from Buea was visiting Mundemba to install the local government official and the local population wanted to use this occasion to wear the T-shirts as a means to peacefully voice their rejection of the oil palm plantation project to the authorities."

Cameroon: Arbitrary arrest of and judicial harassment against Mr. Nasako Besingi and four SEFE collaborators  11/29/2012 FIDH: "The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the arbitrary arrest of and judicial harassment against Mr. Nasako Besingi, Director of the NGO Struggle to Economize Future Environment (SEFE), a local environmental organisation based in Mundemba, Ndian division, Southwest Cameroon, and four of his collaborators, Ms. Ekpoh Theresia Malingo, Mr. Isele Gabriel Ngoe, Mr. Mosongo Lawrence Namaso and Mr. Nwete Jongele."

Facts on the ground undermine Herakles’ Cameroonian PR offensive  11/22/2012 Greenpeace: "Bruce Wrobel the CEO of Herakles Farms has long claimed that his is a company that represents a positive presence in Africa. Indeed it seems impossible at present to pick up a newspaper in the Cameroonian capital Yaoundé without reading about one minor miracle or another taking place in the south west of the country that can only be attributed to the company and their benevolence. Minor miracles that the company is paying for themselves to advertise. But flying over the same southwest region and the real effect of Herakles Farms' presence in the country becomes all too evident. Like ugly pockmarks, craters of forest clearings to make way for what could eventually be a palm oil plantation ten times the size of Manhattan, are visible for miles around in what is otherwise a sea of trees."

Cameroon — Greenpeace International says security officers detained four environmental  11/17/2012 AP 

Land Grabbing Looms: New Palm Oil Plantation Threatens Cameroon's Rainforest  10/26/2012 Huff Post: by Nasako Besingi, Founder and director, Struggle to Economize the Future Environment (SEFE)

Campaign Update – Cameroon: Protests Show Dissent on Palm Oil Project  8/15/2012 Cultural Survival 

Africa Palm-Oil Plan Pits Activists Against New York Investors  7/18/2012 Reuters: "Right now, Africa is the target of many companies hungry for forest land. An April 2012 study by the World Wildlife Fund and France’s Institute for Research and Development noted that new regulations and scrutiny elsewhere are “encouraging large Asian companies to heavily invest in Central Africa.” Herakles Farms, owned by New York venture-finance firm Herakles Capital, and other food giants such as Malaysia’s Sime Darby and Singapore’s Olam, see the next big growth area down the west coast of Africa, from Liberia to Gabon."

RELUFA Newsletter - Cameroon  3/1/2012 RELUFA: "A local group, the Struggle to Economize Future Environment (SEFE), initiated the mobilization of the population to protect their community rights. In August 2011, SEFE introduced a court case against SGSOC asserting that their planned oil palm project will have disastrous consequences for local peoples’ livelihoods; destroy biodiversity, wildlife and hydrology. Following the lawsuit, the court placed an injunction on the activities of the SGSOC. But curiously, SGSOC failed to respect the court orders and continued with their activities. The Ndian High court in Mundemba ordered the arrest of the company officials for violating the court orders."

Links/Enlaces top

Nasako Family

Palm Oil Plantation News, Cameroon

Nasako villages threatened by palm oil plantations: following a world-wide resurgence of plantation economies.


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