Ambassador’s Trip to the Eastern Region November 13-15, 2016
HE Mr. Gilles Thibault, Ambassador of France to Cameroon, visited the region of East Cameroon from 13 to 15 November 2016.
In Kaïgama, he made a visit-tasting of an agricultural cooperative (farm-school) financed by the 1st De-Debt and Development Contract (C2D) and held by the Sisters of St Joseph de Cluny.
After being welcomed in Bertoua, the capital of the eastern region, by Governor Grégoire MVONGO, the Ambassador was able to exchange with Batouri humanitarian actors working in the French NGOs working in the area, including "CARE France" , "Première Urgence Internationale" (PUI) and "Action contre la Faim" (ACF).
On 14 November, he traveled to the Central African Refugee Camp in Lolo near the border with CAR. He was able to appreciate the living conditions of the refugees, after visiting the health center and then the classrooms in the camp. He then held a working meeting in Mbile, one of the other refugee camps, in the presence of the head of Mbile, the mayor of Kentzou, with the promoters of the NGO "RADEC" Community Development). The main objective of this project, funded by the Embassy’s Southern Civil Society Support Fund (FASCS), was to promote cohabitation between local populations and Central African refugees in the Kentzou-Mbile-Lolo region.
He later visited the Agricultural Families School (EFA) in Batouri, supported by the French association "European Institute for Cooperation and Development" (IECD), which receives funds from the Agence Française de Développement (AFD) . In the early evening, along with Mr. Bertrand Caillaud, head of the consular section of the French Embassy, he offered a reception for the French community in the region.
On 15 November, after a thorough discussion with the Governor of the East, he visited the Urban Community of Bertoua (CUB) where he was welcomed by the Secretary General of the CUB, representing the Government Delegate. Together, they visited several projects implemented under the "regional capitals" project, financed by the 2nd C2D, by which the city will benefit from road rehabilitation works, commercial spaces and other user-friendly public spaces.
This trip was also an opportunity to highlight the actions carried out within the framework of the urban governance and local taxation project, financed by the Embassy’s cooperation department. During this project, an addressing of the town of Bertoua was carried out, materialized by the laying of street signs. They were officially inaugurated by the Ambassador in the company of the city authorities.
[Project on Urban Governance and Local Taxation (GUFL):
The objectives of the GUFL project were to strengthen the capacities of the decentralized local authorities (CTD) and to increase the mobilization of the financial resources of the CTDs. In this respect, a simplified addressing of the city of Bertoua was carried out in order to better know and increase the number of taxpayers and thus to increase the taxes levied locally (property taxes, license fees, patents).
This addressing operation was made more visible by an operation of laying of street signs (provided by the company Lacroix), to facilitate the movement and locating of city dwellers in the city. These plaques were officially inaugurated during the visit of the Ambassador of France in November 2016.)]
The C2D project "Regional Capitals" has five objectives: (i) to improve urban mobility and contribute to the opening up of neighborhoods; (Ii) improving access to basic urban services; (Iii) improve the economic development of cities; (Iv) improve the urban framework and image of the city; (V) strengthen the capacity of urban communities to ensure their new skills.
Cameroon and France jointly decided to retain in the 2nd C2D the cities of Bafoussam, Bertoua and Garoua. The implementation of this program required the mobilization of a subsidy of € 60 million (CFAF 39 billion) under the 2nd generation C2D and a sovereign loan in the amount of € 65 million (CFAF 42 billion) for a Total cost of the project of 125M € (82 billion CFA francs).
Although the rural sector in Cameroon is the main provider of employment (more than 60%), it concentrates the most disadvantaged populations, which accentuates the rural exodus of young people.
In view of this, the European Institute for Cooperation and Development (IECD) and its local partner, the National Coordination of the Agricultural Familial Schools of Cameroon (CNEFAC), have been working since 1992 on the professional integration of rural youth. They are based on an innovative vocational training system: Agricultural Family Schools (EFA).
The EFAs are located in 6 regions of Cameroon: the Far North, the North, the East, the Littoral, the South, and the Northwest.
The EFA program is conducted by the IECD in 3 countries (Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire and DRC) for 3 years (July 2015-June 2018), with a total budget of 2.93 M €, of which 1.59 M € is Financed by the AFD.