2014 – Spell of Tests and Stakes

Like many others that have come and gone, the year 2014 will be remembered in Cameroon and elsewhere for some pleasant and unpleasant surprises. During the year we, lived through challenges and other disturbing realities of life: abrupt transitions of loved ones snatched by natural death and misguided sadists. Fortunately, government sustained hope through cooperation and commitment to a redress of the irksome scenario. Despite all that was done, 2014 will go into the annals of history as a year during which there was much to frown, and sigh about than smile and celebrate.

The AIDS pandemic, for example, continued to claim lives as another dragon, the Ebola disease claimed more than 7000 lives in West Africa, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea being the greatest hit.

Then as if that were not enough of an ordeal, sadists acting in the name of a religious sect, Boko Haram, accelerated their crusade to destroy and eliminate innocent peace-loving citizens. What a shame!

While people in other parts of our global village were forced to protest against senseless racist killings by forces paid to protect life, elsewhere religious extremists saw nothing wrong in kidnapping school children, missionaries, cooperation partners and traditional rulers. What a betrayal of our political maturity!

In Mexico, while parents were still mourning their children that had disappeared and were believed to have been abducted and eliminated, the Talibans in Afghanistan shamelessly gunned down 142 students including 9 teachers in the North Eastern city of Peshawar, Pakistan. Political and military leaders vowed to crack down on home-grown Islamist insurgency, but what a truth that despite their attachments to religion these sadists were mainly out to destroy!

Considering that the New Millennium Development Goals which the 2014 would have kept nations working harder to see what could be achieved before the 2015 deadline, what a surprise that little done to ensure better health, education, longer life expectancy, water, and energy! What a shock that limited resources were instead used to destroy our physical and human resources!

The mishaps of the 2014 were such that one could hardly blame nations that focused more on peace and security, than the demands of the New Millennium Development Goals launched in 2000.

However, since there can hardly be effective international cooperation and development without peace, nations that invested more to ensure peace and political stability had good reasons for their option.

More Surprises

During the year, African leaders wondered aloud if the International Court of Justice at The Hague was created mainly for certain regions of our “global village”. They cried foul when some of them were called for trials at The Hague despite some unanswered questions concerning the demand for justice. However, the trend seemed to have taken a different trend as the year petered out causing more of smiles than sighs in Kenya and the Sudan.

In Central Africa, despite the truth that the world’s largest black nation, Nigeria had emerged as an economic giant on the African continent and Cameroon, with a variety of enormous natural resources had remained an icon of peace, an ugly “dragon” emerged to alter the trend. But could it? Will Boko Haram be allowed to stall our efforts for peace and development?

Starting off from the north Eastern borders of Nigeria, the atrocious sect with the controversial name, “Boko Haram” saw nothing wrong in trespassing to attempt an interruption of peace in Cameroon. And what an irony that this sectarian misled group claiming to act in the name of religious faith (Islam,) against Western education and culture, uses Western intelligence and weapons against innocent citizens and teaching of the Koran and Allah, to whom they pray five times a day and donate generously in adoration!

The abduction of over 200 Chibok Secondary School girls who up to this day have lost their ambitions for schooling is regrettable and indeed one of the most shocking things human beings can effect on others. This must be stalled.

The untimely deaths this group has caused in Nigeria and Cameroon, a peace loving neighbour which taught the rest of the world that land and maritime conflicts can be resolved without going to war, is indeed a betrayal of our political maturity. This spirit can be maintained through joint efforts for peace and development.

At the Paris May 17 Summit on Security in Africa, President Paul Biya openly declared war on this Islamic sadistic sect that undermines peace not only in Nigeria but also Cameroon and Sub Saharan Africa. The International Community should take note and cooperate more this year to stall the trend.

The other ordeal of the year besides, insecurity perpetrated by sadists was the outbreak of Ebola.

With this outbreak of the Ebola disease which has already claimed more than 7000 lives in West Africa notably in Serra-Leone, Liberia and Guinea, Cameroon took courageous steps to protect it citizens. Working through the Ministry of Public Health and the European cooperation partners, Government did its to protect not only refugees that streamed into the country from Nigeria and the African Central Republic, but also all citizens and other foreigners.

Furthermore, in his pursuit of the development exigencies of the 2035, the Head of State, during the year launched a three year emergency development plan that would focus on the provision of energy, portable water, health, infrastructure, communication and agriculture. Great!

Estimated to cost about CFA 925 billion this project, is expected to serve as a stimulus for achieving the goals of an emerging nation capable of meeting the basic needs of citizens.

Fortunately, World Bank in December granted Cameroon a loan of CFA 50 billion for investment and development in the cultivation of maize, cassava, tubers and sogho among other cereals all this aimed at raising the living standards of citizens.

Besides, with a programme budget of CFA 346.000 billion, it is hoped that Cameroonians will continue to work harder so that by the end of the New Year, 2015 there will be little or no regrets about the level of execution of the budget to meet the developmental needs of the country. It is the greatest wish of Cameroonians that the programme Budget for the New Year, 2015 be executed with more efficiency and commitment to meet the developm

Source : Cameroon Tribune

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