Thursday, March 30, 2023

PPRD North West: PPRD Committee President Satisfied With Projects Execution Rates

Balungeli Confiance facing the Press
The Steering Committee for the Presidential Plan for Reconstruction and Development (PPRD) has expressed satisfaction  at the execution levels of ongoing PPRD projects to rebuild the North West Region. 

"With what we have seen on the various project sites visited,  I can confidently say, the PPRD projects in the North West Region have  been satisfactorily executed. Where we had to advise we did, where we had to correct we did. The PPRD plan is working in the North West and we are steadily building back better". 

This are the words of the  PPRD Steering Committee President, Director of Cabinet at the Prime Minister's Office,  Balungeli Confinace Ebune as he spoke to the press yesterday, Wednesday March 29, 2023 in Santa Sub Division, Mezam Division , North West Region at the end of  their two-day working visit to the North West Region.

The last day itinerary of the 2-day working visit  took the Prime Minister's Special Envoy and his delegation to Sacred Heart Nursery and Primary School in Mankon, St Joseph Special School in Big Mankon, the Islamic Primary School in Old Town, CBC Primary School at Finance Junction, a water catchment extension in Bamendankwe Village and finally to the Santa Women's Multipurpose Hall. 

The Sacred Heart Nursery and Primary School project engulfed PNDP, the PPRD Project implementation partner, fcfa 55million, the Islamic School fcfa 27 million while the CBC Primary School costs them some fcfa 102 million. Peculiar about CBC Primary school just like the other schools is the fact  that the structures have been constructed and equipped taking into consideration disability inclusiveness. 

PPRD Chair and Governor Lele drinking from the inaugurated public tap

The high moment of the day two tour was at the water catchment extension in Bamendakwe where the PPRD Steering Committee President accompanied by the North West Governor,  Adolphe Lele LAfrique,  inaugurated and drank from the newly constructed public tap. 

The last phase of the project evaluation tour was in Santa Subdivision, Mezam Division wherein the Prime Minister's Envoy commended the Santa population for their resilience against the separatists. He also called on the few misguided youth, who are still in the bushes to drop their arms and embrace the Head of States Olive branch ofvpeace by joining the DDR centre.

Balungeli Confiance Ebune, further called on  the Santa population just like every other beneficiaries of the PPRD Plan to make good use of the projects received as well as guard them judiciously. "More projects are underway, provided you people create an enabling and peaceful environment for the projects to be executed",  he added. 

The Prime Minister's Envoy crowned  his working visit by thanking  Governor Lele Lafrique, the defence and security forces,  administrative and religious authorities, traditional rulers etc. for their commitment and relentless efforts towards ensuring peace in the Region.

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

PPRD-NW/SW: Committee assesses execution levels in the North West

Balungeli Confiance Ebune, President PPRD steering committee

The steering Committee for the Presidential Plan for Reconstruction and Development for the North West and South West Regions (PPRD-NW/SW), is currently on a working visit to the North West Region  today to evaluate the execution rate of works carried out under the mentioned plan. 

Singing of the national anthem 

Speaking during the event, the PPRD President who doubles as Director of Carbinet at the Prime Minister's office, Balungeli Confiance Ebune urged the population of the North West Region to collaborate with stakeholders involved in the reconstruction plan for the development of their region. "Time has come where we should take our destinies into our hands...we take it or shy to the threats of those who don't want development". He stated. He also saluted the efforts of the stakeholders involved in the reconstruction of the North West Region  and called on them to  accelerate this  reconstruction process to improve the livelihood of the population. 

NW Regional Coordinator UNDP 

Speaking for the implementing partner of the reconstruction plan, the United Nations Development Program, the North-West Regional Coordinator for UNDP,  Mme Mary Nyuyinui, outlined the level of execution in the Region, stating that the Presidential Plan has reconstructed and euipped four women  Empowerment centres, organised seven socio-cultural events, supported four media houses. For Infrastructure, 45 projects have been carried out and of these 45, thirty schools were  rehabilitated and equipped, seven health centres and 8 water points powered by solar.  Also, 200 farmers have their farms rehabilitated, 37 women cooperatives and a host of poultry farmers have been supported. The projects outlined cut across all the seven Divisions of the North West Region.

She also expressed the  difficulties faced in accessing some areas in the Region where projects had to be executed due to bad roads and insecurity. 

During the visit, it was revealed that  with initial start-up budget of fcfa 10 billion from the State, the PPRD received an additional fcfa 2.8 billion from the Japanese government, fcfa 1.5 billion at the start and  fcfa 1.3 billion this year. The plan is hugely supported by: the Islamic Development Bank, SABC, the Employers Union  Bank of Cameroon, GICAM amongst others.

Prof. Fru Fobuzshi ANGWAFO III 

In his own intervention,  Professor Fru Fobushzi Angwafo III, President of the North West Regional Assembly, appreciated the reconstruction plan for its role in ensuring the steady return to sustainable peace and normalcy in the Region. 
And seized the opportunity appeal to  UNDP to take into consideration the vulnerable population, and consider inclusiveness, in the implementation process.

Prof. Angwafo III also believes that, it is imperative for the Regional Assembly to partner with the PPRD, put together resources and reach out to the  Divisions and Sub Divisions in order to improve on the livelihood of the populations.

Governor Adolphe Lele Lafrique 

On his part, the Governor of the North West Region, H. E Adolph Lele Lafrique while appreciating the level of execution of the Presidential Plan for Reconstruction and Development in the North West, stated that;

"Many villages were empty, many have returned to open their small scale businesses. In Nkambe the local population has shown gratitude for the multipurpose hall given to them by the Head of State through the Presidential Plan for Reconstruction and Development. 
"Though the road to Nkambe is horrible in some parts, the people are fade up and the population of the Northwest region in general are expecting that the PPRD will help them to rebuild back better." Governor Lele Lafrique added.

The first day of the working visit of the steering Committee for the Presidential Plan of Reconstruction and Development in the North West Region ended with a tour of some giant projects in  Bamenda III Municipality; namely, the Water Treatment Centre in Mente and the Full Gospel School in Nkwen. The tour to other sites where reconstruction is ongoing in the Region is expected to continue tomorrow March 29, 2023.

Accompanying Minister Balungeli were:  the North West Governor and his entourage, the President of the North West Regional Assembly, the SDO for Mezam, Mayors, Divisional Officers, Regional Delegates of: Communication, Water and Energy, Public Works, Basic and Secondary Education amongst other officials. 

It should be noted that the Presidential Plan for Reconstruction and Development of the North West and South West Regions (PPRD-NW/SW), was an off-shoot of the Major National Dialogue that held from September 30, to October 04, 2019 in Yaounde, that was  created by President Paul Biya is aimed at rebuilding and rehabilitating what existed before but had been destroyed in the course of the socio-political crisis in the two English-speaking regions of Cameroon. 

Since its coming into   place on April 3, 2020, and for almost three years now, beneficiaries of this plan have attested to its effectiveness and vision to improving livelihoods.

Friday, March 17, 2023

Bamenda inhabitants queue for fuel as shortages hit the the city

Transporters lined up at Tradex, up station to take fuel

Scenes like this of people lining up at gas stations in Bamenda, have been common for the past  few days, jerrycans in hand are becoming common place. Most fuel stations have run out of diesel in recent days and those that have are now rationing it.

"There is no fuel all over the town, not even the illicit fuel (Fingeh). We heard, tradex has fuel, so we drove from Ntarinkon to come get even a little.  We can  been line up for 4 hours, 5 hours, just to get as little  as can run the car for the day. I've been here since 6 am," said ndonwi, a taxi driver.

Motorists waiting for their turns to get fuel

"There is already no fuel at other stations and where we find a little bit of petrol, we are told we can't fill our tanks," said Moffo Koumeni, a cab driver.

In the wake of scarce supplies of diesel and Super, transporters have increased transpotation fares. Prices of goods too are shooting up. While the fuel shortage situation is becoming unbearable for motorists and other transporters  in Bamenda and surrounding towns, denizens believe that the days ahead may be more precarious as per price hikes in petroleum products, should the scarcity continue".

"The lines you find in the gas stations is an impact.  It is a psychological moment, it is necessary to prepare the Cameroonian citizen for the worse. For instance,  we managed to find petrol here at Tradex up station, but given the scarcity, they are giving us a litre at 1500FCFA and even rationalising because of the number of people who are here to consume", said Mr. Chifor Pius, an urban transporter.

It should be noted that, on the international market, oil prices have soared and the state is finding it hard to continue subsidizing fuel. Fuel subsidies cost the Cameroonian Government over $1.2 billion a year and the state has come under pressure from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to stop them.

By VictoryMarshal Ayafor 

Sunday, March 5, 2023

March 12 Senatorial Elections: NCC urges the Media to be responsible

Joseph Chebonkeng Kalabubse, President of NCC 

Ahead of the March 12, Senatorial Elections, the President of the National Communication Council, Joseph Chebonkeng Kalabubse has called on media practitioners in the North-West Region not to allow themselves to be used by political for their personal interests, but should report the elections with  objectivity, balance and fairness. 

NCC Delegation with journalists of the North West Region 

He was speaking during a  one day working session with media persons at the Regional Delegation of Arts and Culture on Friday March 3, 2023.

A meeting during which,  press men and women were given a handbook with guidelines on electoral coverage and code of conduct to adopt when reporting, come Sunday March 12, 2023.

Speaking to the press, Mr. Chebonkeng  highlighted the key role the media plays in the entire electoral process and called on them to report with objectivity,  while respecting professional ethics and deontology; not allowing  politicians to use them for their personal interests. The National Communication Council boss also urged the media in the Region to try as much as they can professionally speaking, to be a good reflection of a responsible press especially this election period.

"The peculiarity of the North West Region is that, it is a highly political Region, with two key political parties who are always very present. So when it comes to elections the stakes are heightened and we expect the press which is very vibrant to, during this campaign period give a true reflection of the reality on ground through responsible, fair, objective and balanced reporting that enables the voters to make informed choices".  He added.

Participants at the briefing

Speaking to one of the participants of the briefing, Loh Sera, of Boyo Community Radio expressed how timely the briefing was and how the 
Handbook for journalists during elections will help her do her work following  legal regulations and professional ethics. 

It should be noted that, the March 12, Senatorial Election marks the 3rd of its kind in the political history of our Nation and the very first time the North West Regional Assembly is taking part in the Senatorial Elections.

Campaigns are expected to end on the midnight of Saturday March 11, 2023 and only Municipal and Regional councillors are expected to decide the next 7 voted senators from the North West Region who will be in office for the next 5 years.