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CAMEROON MARKS 42ND NATIONAL DAY

President Biya and First Lady, Chantal Biya

President Biya and First Lady, Chantal Biya

May 20, 2014, marks exactly 42 years since May 20, 1972, the day when Cameron became a unitary state. Cameroonians the nation over today celebrate the 42nd edition of their national unity. Celebrated under the theme “the army and the nation, in synergy for the preservation of peace and security, purveyor of integration, stability and economic development”, the grand event, presided over by the Head of State, President Paul Barthelemy Biya Bi Mvondo, was marked by a grand match past at the May 20 Boulevard in Yaounde. Special guests this year, as is tradition, was a contingent of the Ivory Coast army, led by Commandant Charles Yake.

Commemorative activities

Activities had been launched in Kye-Ossi in the South region, Kumba in the South West region, and Manoka in the Littoral region by the minister of Youth Affairs and Civic Education, Ismael Bidoung Mkpatt.

On Saturday May 17, 2014, a unity march took place all over the nation, in the ten regional capitals. However, Yaounde’s was spectacular with ten starting points, symbolic of the ten regions of Cameroon, all converging in four meeting points, symbolic of the four ethnicities of Cameroon: the Sawa, the Beti-Fang, the Grassfield and the Northern wings of the country. Animated by a mass choir, a mixture of Christian, Muslim and otherwise religious leaders implored the hand of God upon the unity of Cameroon.

On Sunday May 18, 2014, it was a colourful display of the Cameroon air force that graced the esplanade of the air force base in Yaounde. The parachutists, including three females, were applauded by a host of government officials, in the presence of Martin Mbarga Nguele, director general for national security.

A beauty pageant to determine Miss Unity 2014 was carried out involving ten contestants drawn form the ten regions of Cameroon. The young contestants had to elaborate on the theme of the year’s celebration, and showcase the beauty of their region, whilst bringing out the unity in diversity of the nation. At the end of the contest, Clementine Pita Rabbit was elected Miss Unity 2014.

At the May 20 Boulevard in Yaounde, a grand match past, presided over by President Biya, was attended by a host of top government officials, members of the diplomatic corps, and a crowd of local on-lookers amongst others. The military match past; civilian match past comprising over 30 political parties as well as schools featured as highlights.

In the evening, a gala will take place at the unity palace to celebrate national unity and integration, attended by a host of national and international invitees.

Revisiting history: May 20, 1972

After the British Southern Cameroons decided to gain independence by joining the already independent ‘La Republique Du Cameroun’ following the 11 February 1961 plebiscite, the move was officialised on October 1, 1961, and the Federal Republic of Cameroon was thus born.

Despite debated reasons, a new vision was sought by then president, Ahmadou Ahidjo, to remove barriers to national unity and integration. This, according to President Ahidjo, was to be fulfilled with the elimination of the two federated states of West and East Cameroon, and the birth of a united Cameroon. And so it was, that on May 20, 1972, Cameroonians on both sides of the Moungo took part in a referendum where they decided to be a unitary state.

The country thus gained the appellation “United Republic of Cameroon” and subsequently, “Republic of Cameroon”. Since then, May 20 was chosen as a national day for the Cameroonian people, and much reverence thenceforth bestowed upon it.

 The national anthem

The first words of the national anthem are said to have been originally written in 1928 by Rene Djam Ajame and a student group. However, due to Cameroon’s bilingual nature, the French words as we know them today were written by Moise Nyatte Nko’o and the English version by Bernard Nsosika Fonlon. The music was composed by Nyatte and Samuel Miniko Bamba, and it was finally adopted when Cameroon became an official or autonomous region.

Lyrics – English version

O Cameroon thou cradle of our fathers,

Holy shrine where in our midst they now repose,

Their tears and blood, and sweat thy soil did water,

On thy hills and valleys once their tillage rose.

Dear fatherland, thy worth no tongue can tell!

How can we ever pay thy due?

Thy welfare we will win in toil and love and peace,

Will be to thy name ever true!

Chorus

Land of promise, land of glory!

Thou of life and joy our only store!

Thine be honour, thine devotion,

And deep endearment for ever more!

Verse 2

From Shari, from where the Moungo meanders,

From along the banks of lowly Boumba stream,

Muster thy sons in union close around thee,

Mighty as the Buea Mountain be their team.

Instil in them the love of gentle ways,

Regret for errors of the past,

Foster for mother Africa a loyalty,

That true shall remain to the last.

Chorus

Land of promise, land of glory!

Thou of life and joy our only store!

Thine be honour, thine devotion,

And deep endearment for ever more!

 

The grand debate: national unity, myth or reality

Even though the country celebrates its national day, there is growing debate on whether integration and national unity is possible or plausible, legal or illegal, or if it is a myth or a reality.

Clamours are rife with the popularized “Anglophone problem” where Cameroonians of the English speaking side decry alleged discrimination in official appointments, little or no development and unfulfilled promises amongst others. One that stands out in this light is the construction of the much clamoured-for Kumba-Mamfe stretch of road. After long promises, the road is yet to be tarred. The latest of such promises ensued during the celebrations marking Cameroon’s fiftieth anniversaries of independence and reunification in Buea, last February, where those present were reassured that construction works on the road will debut on May 5, 2014. However, this has still gone down the anal of unfulfilled promises.

Whether the unity celebration as that displayed today is a farce or not, whether the national integration of Cameroon be a myth or reality, truth remains that a single nation is now recognised in Cameron; the people governed as one and the present vision aimed at preserving Cameroon united, one and indivisible, till proven otherwise.

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KONDENGUI INMATES: FREEDOM VIA THE GRAVE?

Ever since the sparrow-hawk operation took root in Cameroon, some detainees of the Kondengui Maximum security prison in Yaounde have passed via the inescapable route of death to gain freedom. Even for those who were seemingly set free, death has still dragged them unto its path of freedom.

engoulou realVery recently, it was the turn of the former minister delegate to the then ministry of economy and finance, Henri Engoulou. He died in pre-trial detention following his alleged involvement in the embezzlement of public funds, while serving in the capacity of minister delegate in charge of budget. Engoulou fell sick while awaiting trial at the Kondengui maximum security prison in Yaounde, and was transferred to the Yaounde central hospital where he died on May 8, 2014.

engoulouAnother example is the case of the former board president of credit foncier du Cameroon (CFC), Charles Booto A Ngon, who was slammed a 40-year jail term. Detained in July 2008 for siphoning public funds worth 3.5 billion FCFA in accomplice with Joseph Edou, former general manager of the CFC, he had since November 2008 suffered form a throat and back cancer, and was admitted at the Yaounde general hospital. All requests to fly him out for proper medical treatment fell on government deaf ears and on February 12, 2009, he equally was released from his ailing health and physical detention unto the cold embrace of death.

catherineA more recent case presents itself in the death of Catherine Abena, who died last March 19, 2014. The former secretary of state at the ministry of secondary education was arrested on January 8, 2010 and transferred to the Kondengui prison. On January 15, Catherine Abena went on hunger strike, and was thenceforth transferred to serve her term on a hospital bed in the Yaounde central hospital, where once more, death pulled her onto its definition of freedom.

The glaring examples set aside, it is however not news that since May 2, 2014 the former secretary general at the presidency, Jean Marie Atangana Mebara has been hospitalised,mebara after a malaise at the Kondengui central prison. Mebara has been in intensive care since then at the Yaounde general hospital. His frail health, according to his lawyer, Assira, accounts for his absence in court on May 8. Assira also revealed that Mebara suffers a pancreatic deficiency. On trial with the former ambassador of Cameroon to the United States of America, co-accused Jerome Mendouga over the embezzlement of over 2.5 billion FCFA in the albatross affair, the case was adjourned to June 2, hoping he gains his physical strength.

Likewise, the former minister of then ministry of the economy and finance, Polycarpe polycarpeAbah Abah, has been a constant visitor to the hospital due to his ailing health. Revisiting memory, he suffered a heart attack in April 2008 and was welcome for treatment at the central hospital in Yaounde. Since then, the former minister of the economy and finance has been a regular visitor to the hospital for check-ups.

On his part, the former secretary general at the presidency and former minister of marafaterritorial administration and decentralisation, Marafa Hamidou Yaya, detained at the basement of the state secretariat is equally in a state of not-too-good health. Coupled to protesting the deplorable detention conditions, he visited the national social insurance fund (CNPS) hospital last January 31, 2013 where he consulted an ophthalmologist. Marafa was said to be having eye problems, and reports are rife that his healthiness is also failing him.

Yves Michel Fotso, also detained at the basement of the state secretariat for defence yves michelequally has frail health. Reports gathered from close sources say the former general manager of the Cameroon Airlines Corporation (CAMAIRCO), in detention over the botched presidential plane equally endures the weight of fragile health.

BEDEVILED REUNIFICATION?

Barely a week after the presidential visit to Buea, on occasion of the celebration of Cameroon’s 50 years of Reunification, the settling dust seems to carry dissenting views into the eyes of the celebrants. Minds reel back to former President Ahmadou Ahidjo’s speech on October 1, 1961 where he asked “what is the need of a union bedeviled by divisions deeper than frontiers, quarrels opposing brothers, children and parents?

According to a report this morning on the National Radio Station, Fako Chiefs, after an extraordinary meeting in Wovia, Limbe, have threatened to pull out of the South West Chief’s Conference (SWCC). According to the Chief’s, the SWCC has been hijacked by over-zealous chiefs. They also decry amongst others, the shabby treatment by their peers, in that they were not consulted in an audience to receive the Head of State, Paul Biya. Issues also arise about funds raised by the South West Region, for the event, which according to Senator Peter Mafany Musonge, a son of the South West soil, was used up to the last franc. Though such is the advocated move, there are however dissenting voices as to the course of action.

Surprisingly in Buea, electricity supply has been on the rise and fall for the past three days, an utter versa from the estimated close to FCFA 4 Billion spent on water and electricity supply networks in Buea, on occasion of the event, as the Minister of Communication, Issa Tchiroma Bakary revealed, while speaking to the press in Yaoundé shortly after the date of the event was made public. One wonders if the estimated FCFA 35 Billion spent on Buea on occasion of the 50th anniversary of reunification will last a considerable time, even as some prominent works, like the reunification monument, seem to bear light weight, compared to its intended purpose.

In all, solace is once more drawn from Ahmadou Ahidjo’s sum that “Cameroonians should consider themselves as children of the same family, which disagreements can separate temporarily, but who still find in themselves deep links uniting them above all disorders”.

 

 

 

REUNIFICATION CELEBRATION: WHY THE DELAY?

One people, one nation, one future

One people, one nation, one future

The hopping deadlines for the completion of works in Buea, prior to celebrations marking Cameroon’s 50th anniversary of reunification is no longer news for Cameroonians. The latest of December 19, issued by the Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Jean Claude Mbwentchou, has equally not been respected.

With speculations on the increase as to the reason for the delay, some believe it is because President Biya expects to be awarded a PhD Honoraris Corsas (according to a local French daily), or a Doctorate Degree in Political Science.

Whatever the reasons, plans seem to be on hold for the sole cause of the celebrations. As per Bouddih Addams in his column “Roughshod” on The Post Newspaper, No 01490, December 23, 2013,  “ the town of Buea has been taken hostage by the wait for President Biya’s coming for the celebration of the Re(Unification) of Cameroon”.

Addams continues that if “X-mass were also dependent on the presidential visit, it would have been postponed. We have proved that if international celebrations were dependent on us, like the World AIDS Day…there is no doubt that all of the days will not be celebrated on the designated dates”. This is perhaps not open for debate as the graduation ceremony of the University of Buea for 2013 has been postponed to a yet-to-be-announced date, still dependent on the president’s visit to Buea.

Down memory lane, President Biya had scheduled his eminent visit to Buea to definitely be within 2013, as per a statement granted State TV, after last September 30’s  twin Legislative and Municipal elections in Cameroon. Barely two days to the end of the year 2013, speculations still roam the air as to whether January 2014 will see president Biya in Buea.

52 years since the event that shaped the life of the nation, renowned historians give stunning revelations that could make or mar the whole idea in the minds of Cameroonians. Despite the roughshod nature of the celebrations on every other important activity in Buea, majority still eagerly await the festivities with “blood in the eye”.

PIRATE ATTACKS BECOME RAMPANT IN BAKASSI

Attacks by pirates in the Cameroonian peninsular of Bakassi, have been on the rise, ever since the territory was formerly handed over to Cameroon, on August 14, 2013.

Recently, on October 16, 2013, pirates, believed to have travelled from the Nigerian side, attacked three trawlers in the Bakassi waters around Rio Del Rey, shot the captain of one of them, and took two others hostage.

According to reports on a local newspaper, the victim, Jude Ajie, was spared, only after his ship engineer paid the pirates the sum of FCFA 1 million. This is obviously not new, as ransoms have been paid in past cases to pirates, notably, for the release of two CDC Malaysian workers; the French hostages taken in the North of Cameroon, to name but these.

On another instance, it was reported by another local newspaper( Mutations), that pirates hit the Cameroonian side on Tuesday, October 22, 2013. This time around, a group of 10 Nigerian pirates targeted a Nigerian fisherman, who operated with a Cameroonian license in Cameroonian waters. They took the captain of the trawler, together with his mechanic.

Though trusted sources reveal that the 10-man group could well be responsible for the last attack, the group is yet unnamed. However, the security element, BIR Delta, charged with ensuring the safety of all on the peninsular, attests to the proper organization of the pirates as compared to other known groups, which are well armed.

These pirates, target not only humans to demand a ransom, but equally seize flying boats, outboard engines, and any other valuable that can bring in cash.

A top military official however believes these recurrent attacks are as a result of BIR Delta’s concentration around oil fields, to the detriment of the population, whom he says, have to be the focus. He therefore proposes, as remedy, that elements of the Rapid Intervention Battalion, BIR Delta, be in every boat, to curb the worsening situation of pirate attacks, especially in Cameroonian waters.

FGM LOOMS IN THE CORRIDORS : FISH IT OUT

Female genital mutilation, FGM is a practice one would think has been stamped out. But, the sad reality remains that the practice still devours the physical, medical, psychological and even psychical lives of young african females.

Fatima, a 23-year-old mother from The Gambia, was 10 years old when she was taken, along with about 200 other primary school children, out into the bush to be cut:

“There are two people holding you and then they cut it in one go,” she recalled. “And then you cry for the rest of the day. The pain is the worst. It is even more painful than giving birth and you have to live with it for the rest of your life.”

As an adult Fatima sought asylum in Britain to save her three-year-old daughter, who was born in the UK, from being mutilated too. The head of the family is an imam, she said, “so my daughter doesn’t stand a chance. If we return to The Gambia she will be cut”.

Such stories are true and reveiling, and are not just told to make the practice a myth.  More steps should be taken, to stamp the practice out of the lives of fellow humans.

EPITOME OF AFRICAN DEMOCRACY CELEBRATES 95TH BIRTHDAY.

The real democrat

The real democrat

The embodiment of democracy in Africa today blows his 95th candle. Nelson Mandela not only today has the gift of long life, despite his ailing health, but has the record as one of the world’s most democratic presidents, ever to have manned an African state.

Madiba, as he is popularly known, has been a household name since the days of South Africa’s apartheid history. In his struggle to free his people from white dominance and discrimination, he made prison confines his abode for 27 healthy years. His struggle finally bore fruit in 1990, when he was released from prison, and made south Africa’s first black president in 1994, a subtle, but real defeat for the apartheid system.

Madiba showed the real democracy South Africa and Africa at large needed, and still needs today. He had fought for his cake, and when he had it, did not make the mistake of eating it. He had fought for change, and when placed in a position to effect that change, he set the pace, and gave the opportunity for the people to have the power for themselves.  He gave power in 1999 to the people, for the people, and by the people.

He lived and passed down real democracy that his country still enjoys today. South Africa is an African country to reckon with: the seeds that nelson Mandela sowed are fruitful today.

Though his health is ailing, as he celebrates his 95th anniversary, the whole nation does with him, and even reveres him, more than any other South African statesman.  He lived democracy: he gave the power back to his people.

WHAT GOES ON BEHIND CLOSED DOORS

TRUE, SEX CAN BE GREAT, BUT WATCH OUT FOR WHAT GOES ON BEHIND CLOSED DOORS, IT MAY COST YOU YOUR LIFE.

Most youths, are likely unaware of what goes on behind closed doors, reason why they are the most affected with sexually transmitted infections and diseases (STIs/STDs).

Statistics reveal most at risk of contracting an STD or STI are people from ages 16 to 26. Young people tend to be more promiscuous and by having more partners increase the risk in contracting an STD or virus. There has also been a steady STD increase in college students because of drug and alcohol use.

Depending on the disease, the infection can be spread through any type of sexual activity involving the sex organs, the anus, or the mouth. An infection can also be spread through contact with blood during sexual activity.

STDs are infrequently transmitted by any other type of contact (blood, body fluids or tissue removed from an STD infected person and placed in contact with an uninfected person).People that share unsterilized needles markedly increase the chance to pass many diseases, including STD’s (especially hepatitis B), to others.

Some, Herpes, HPV (Genital Warts), AIDS and HIV have no cure; and others, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, Chlamydia, Scabies (which are Body lice) and Genital Crabs or Pubic Lice, Trichomoniasis, Hepatitis, have deadly consequences on the individual.

How would you know what went on behind closed doors was horrific?

¨  Is your urine dark and or smell bad?

¨  Is your genital area secreting puss or discharge?

¨  Do you experience a Burning sensation when urinating?

¨  Do you have a strange rash or itching sensation?

¨  Do you have any legions, bumps, or warts in the genital or anus area?

¨  Have you noticed an unusual odor?

¨  Have you noticed a strange blister or open sore?

¨  Do you have pain during intercourse that wasn’t there previously?

¨  Do you have abdominal pain?

¨  Have you noticed any unusual or unexplained swelling?

¨  Have you seen small eggs or nits in your pubic hair or armpits?

Images pertaining to STIs/STDs are offensive, if wanted; get more information at the website hereunder:  http://www.righthealth.com/topic/X

SCARVES EN VOGUE

Unlike the yesteryears where headscarves were fashion respected only by the aged, youths nowadays have returned to this piece of fashion, using it in sundry ramifications.

Get various colours

Get various colours

Looking smart with a headscarf

Smart in headscarf

It is knotted as a bow, when one needs to reduce the effect of the idea of wearing a head scarf. This gives one the young look of moving with a ribbon.

Others, who love the designer look, prefer the scarf tied up in a bunch. Several colours of scarves can be mixed to achieve the desired look. This adds a spicy dash to the overall novelty.

Get the designer look

Get the designer look

But colourful

And colourful

Look simple, yet good

Look simple, yet good

If not tied up in a bunch, then letting the bunch go behind, but still knotted, is another style. For those who love the features of their face to prompt out, this is the perfect match. It adds a touch of responsibility to the look.

Better still; just keep up the traditional headscarf of wanting to look mature and in control. Perfect for matching up with the traditional African wear. It makes you simply African, and beautiful.

Be black, and beautiful

Be black, and beautiful

Even in headscarves

Even in headscarves

Look good

Look good

If the above don’t do, then try this really simple one.  Make yourself beautiful with a scarf on, but still stay en vogue.

A NEW BUEA

Buea might not be easily recognizable in the months ahead. The recent infrastructure that now embellish the place, are such to marvel at.

Buea's glass house

Buea’s glass house

The new council building welcomes new-comers to Buea, with its beautiful glass adornments. Its top seemingly touches the sky, reminiscent of the fact that the sky might be the only limit for the place Buea.

Mt. Hotel, to lodge visitors at 50years Reunification celebrations

To lodge 50years Reunification celebrants

The renovated Mountain Hotel is another site to behold. Apart from its beautiful entrance, the over 40 rooms and suites of the hotel have been reworked, to accommodate the visitors to Buea, during the upcoming celebrations of Cameroon’s Reunification Golden Jubilee.

Safe haven for Reunification celebration dignitaries

Safe haven for Reunification celebration dignitaries

Close to the Mountain Hotel is the Parliamentary Flat, another glassy and sparkling site that will equally serve the 50th anniversary of Cameroon’s reunification celebrations in Buea. It surely will host the numerous dignitaries and visitors that will flank Buea, sometime this year.

Befitting of the G.C.E Board

Befitting of the G.C.E Board

The new Cameroon Government Certificate of Education (GCE) board building is another site to marvel at. The new structure, it is said, is now befitting of the main Cameroon secondary education examinations setter, the GCE board.

The new grand stand

The new grand stand

Amongst this new infrastructure is the new grand stand that is to host the Golden jubilee celebrations of Cameroon’s Reunification in Buea. the large tribune, is evocative of the significance of the celebrations, that draw root on October 1, 1961, when President Ahmadou Ahidjo, and John Ngu Foncha both put in their signatures, to reunify Cameroon.  This was at the Mt. Hotel in Buea.

Edifices, now characteristic of Buea

Edifices, now characteristic of Buea

The student residential area of Molyko is equally swept with this new look in Buea. Upcoming hostels, especially those around the streets, are beautifully constructed, and even those formerly tattered looking, have been renovated. The Eta Palace Hotel is one that adds a touch of glamour to Molyko and Buea at large, especially by night.

New look of road, stretching from Mile 17 to BUEA Town

New look of road, stretching from Mile 17 to BUEA Town

Exiting Buea, the Mile 17 Motor Park tells a lot of its own. Playing host to most relaxation spots in Buea, the park, always bustling in the day with several travelers to and from Buea, equally bustles at night, with the loud speakers and music that emanates from the relaxation spots. Buea indeed, is a Place to Behold.

KID HAWKERS RESUME WORK

Hawkers by the University street

Hawkers by the University street

Kid hawkers in Buea; have returned to their normal routine of hawking wares during the holidays. Their chants can be heard around hostels, in the streets of Buea, the Mile 17 Motor Park, and equally in the markets.

Hawking in the markets and around student hostels might be relatively safe to go by, but around the motor park and the streets, it gets dangerous for the kid hawkers. Most of these, less than 10 years old, get to dodge oncoming vehicles at the park. Even crossing the streets of Buea has been made more risky for these hawkers, who now lack the mid-ridge that used to aid their crossing.

Trading groundnut for money

Trading groundnut for money

Threading risky roads during hawking

Threading risky roads during hawking

As they chant “hot kwacoco”, “boiling egg”, “boiling granut”, “fish rooo”, “akra banana” and lots more, these kids seem to be oblivious to the fact that hawking at their ages might be dangerous, as they are exposed to thefts, rape, accidents and other ills. With their innocent faces, they hurriedly traverse the day, with the view of selling all their wares, and making money for themselves and their families.

UB-THE PLACE TO BE: Unfriendly to the physically challenged?

Physically challenged students, might not find the University of Buea, a place to be, as it has some unfriendly infrastructure that would not ease the entry of these students.

Getting to top flows of classroom blocks is no easy play

Getting to top flows of classroom blocks is no easy play

Having a class at lecture halls of the upper section of the Classroom blocks will not be an easy task to accomplish, as there exist a flight of stairs to get up, provision not made for students who might be making use of wheelchairs or clutches.

Labs at the faculty of science are mostly upstairs

Labs at the faculty of science are mostly upstairs

The same scenario obtains at the main lecture halls around the faculty of Science. Worse for these, is that most of their laboratories are found upstairs, making the journey up a tedious one for our physically challenged friends.

Interior look of Amphi 750

Interior look of Amphi 750

Getting to the largest amphitheatre, the Amphi 750, most of them would face the challenge once more. The main entrances to this lecture hall are equally adorned with stairs.

Flight of stairs leading to most offices on campus

Flight of stairs leading to most offices on campus

Not only lecture halls display such unfriendliness, but equally administrative offices. Most, if not all administrative blocks in UB have an upper section, making it a struggle for physically challenged students to get to these upper sections if they must see some lecturers whose offices are found there.

If challenging for the visually impaired, how much more if on clutches or wheelchair

If challenging for the visually impaired, how much more if on clutches or wheelchair

Despite the unfriendliness of the infrastructure, physically challenged students in the University of Buea, are often resilient beings who welcome just any challenge, and make some sunshine out of the gray they found. Even in UB, they struggle to attend lectures, and tend to make it successfully at the end of their stay in the place to be. While the responsible authorities render the existing and forthcoming infrastructure friendlier, despite being challenged, they make UB, “THEIR OWN PLACE TO BE TOO”.

DEP’T OF JOURNALISM AND MASS COMMUNICATION-UB: solution to professional craving.

Students in the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of BUEA, do not only take home the knowledge that they acquire, but are equally given the opportunity to practicalise their theory gained.

Students writing papers for the 6p.m News

Students writing papers for the 6p.m News

In JMC, as the department is fondly called, students get to actively take part in the production of news and news programmes. This usually is the culmination of long hours of news gathering

Final year students on air

Final year students on air

and processing, coordinated by the news producer, and supervised by the station’s supervisor. The news is aired on Chariot Radio, FM93.5 that spans the Buea municipality and its environs.Going on air is an experience worth living, and students get to do this during the programmes that they manage, some of which are “Your Health Today” and “Focus On UB”.

Journalism equally involves writing in print, and the students are equally offered the opportunity to exercise that. The publication of The Chariot Newspaper, The Chariot Magazine, and their marketing, are must-dos for students in JMC. The processes of gathering, processing and presenting the material are all manned by the students themselves. Media sales and advertising are incorporated in the day to day work of the students, as they get canvass for adverts for their products.

Public speaking, public relations and audience research are areas the students are well vested in. At their Open Days and World Press Freedom Day celebrations, such skills are often exhibited

The products of the school are proof enough, as they grasp both national and international choice placements. Consider Eric Lanmia and Hilda Bih of the CRTV, Budy Norbert of Marc and Ericsson Inc., Ivan Tamba of Le Tribune Bilingue, and Nathalie Wakam of the BBC World Service, to drive home the point on the professionalization of the department of JMC.

MANYU: A RICH CULTURAL HERITAGE

Manyu division in the South West Region of Cameroon has a rich cultural heritage, which cannot be passed by. Its richness in diversity range from its popular traditional dish, to the traditional regalia; and the customary dances and songs, to the peculiarity of its secret societies amongst others. These all are culminated in the perceptions that people have of the people of Manyu.

A typical Manyu indigene, in the traditional regalia

A typical Manyu indigene, in the traditional regalia

The traditional regalia of the Manyu people is one rich in colour and diversity. For the males, it is a white shirt, worn over a nicely threaded wrapper, all tied by the side. Beads usually accompany, hung on the neck and usually of a red colour. Interesting of all these is the accompanying hat. Either of a red colour accompanied by feathers that signify the person’s titles, or they are adorned with an assortment of cowries and other traditional ornaments that give the wear its splendor. The ladies are decently simple in their big gowns, commonly called in Cameroon “Kaba”, with a gracious headscarf well intertwined on the head.

Eru is a traditional dish well known in Cameroon and in neighbouring Nigeria; a delicacy of the Manyu people. Eaten with its complement made of fermented cassava paste, commonly known as “water fufu” or “Akpu”, the dish widely satisfies the cravings of both national and international appetites as well as markets.

Moninkim

Moninkim (Photo credit: fakoman)

Manyu traditional dances are a sight to behold. The popular “Moninkim” features a lady with a mirrored basket, with “cha-chas” on her legs. These produce a melody that even non-Manyu tend to move with unconsciously.

The “Ekpe” and “Obasinjom” secret societies are amongst the most glaring in Manyu, where title holders are often referred to as “Sesseku”, and chiefs called “Nfor”. The Manyu culture is actually an interesting one, that most should have a feel of, whenever they set foot in Cameroon.