By Doh James Sonkey
The Prime Minister, Head of Government, Chief Dr. Joseph Dion Ngute has hailed the achievements so far in the implementation of recommendations of the Major National Dialogue three years ago.
He was speaking last August 4, 2022 at the auditorium of the Prime Minister’s Office while chairing the 4th session of the Committee to Follow-Up the Implementation of the Recommendations of the Major National Dialogue. He said this include the drafting and signing of decrees for local authorities, repentant combattants benefiting from the DDR centres, the reconstruction plan causing communities to start reviving their local economies.
He also said the National Commission for Bilingualism and Multiculturalism has been championing the fight against hate speech and xenophobia, while security and defence forces have been protecting people and their properties.
The Prime Minister cited other remarkable successes such as the increase in school enrollment in the crisis-plagued NorthWest and South West regions. He disclosed that in 2017 the North West had 220,000 school enrollment. It dropped to 24,000 in 2019, but in 2022 it has tripled to 70,000. Over in the South West, he disclosed that before the crisis school enrollment was 185,000. When the crisis started, it dropped to 23,000, but has today increased to 91,000. He said schools in many towns are operational, while the GCE exams were this year conducted throughout the two crisis hit regions without major hitches.
“These are perceptible indicators of recovery,” Dion Ngute said.
He also indicated that there has been revival of cultural jamborees in the regions, “people now keeping late nights and soldiers and the population drinking side by side”. Agricultural activities, he said, are also picking up, with the Cameroon Development Corporation, CDC, Pamol among others having returned to production.
He stated that the construction of the Bamenda-Babadjou road has been handed to local contractors who master the terrain while the Head of State has ordered the construction of the Kumba-Ekonto-Titi road to be handed to the Military Civil Engineering Corps.
“Nonetheless, despite these successes, there are still pockets of resistance in some areas.” Concluded Chief Dr. Joseph Dion Ngute who thus, called on the population of the North West and South West regions to embrace government’s initiatives.
The Major National Dialogue, he said “gave the opportunity to rethink, re-imagine and reinvent a new, better and peaceful country. Since its holding, it has contributed to bring down violence and accelerated decentralisation. This is evident in the fact that economic activities in the crisis-hit regions have blossomed.”
The Prime Minister said the promulgation of the law on decentralisation gave the North West and South West regions special status, putting in place of Regional Assemblies, appointment of Public Independent Conciliators who are here to participate in our deliberations.
The government, after the dialogue, he noted, has recognized the willingness of the people of the North West and South West regions to participate in their education, legal systems and traditional chiefdoms. He also expressed government’s determination to promote community-driven development. PM Dion Ngute also noted the creation of the Presidential Plan for the Reconstruction of the North West and South West regions “to restore social cohesion, reconstruction of infrastructures” among others.