13, February 2017
Laptops were not promised only to Anglophone students!! It was a gift from the Head of State Paul Biya to all university students in Cameroon. The Biya gesture was made public on the 10th of February 2016 following his address to the youths of the nation last year. Students now say they are disappointed that they are not yet in possession of these machines.
On the 10th of February 2017 and in the presence of 5 members of government, students from the University of Yaoundé 1 asked for the computers that the Head of State promised to offer them. The students had assembled at the Amphi 700 to listen to the Youth Day address of the Head of State and they expressed their disappointment and disapproval of the 84 year-old leader.
In front of the cabinet ministers, the predominantly Francophone student audience shouted immediately the broadcast of the speech came to an end “What about the computers he promised on this same day last year? No no ! He still forgot about our computers. We are disappointed; all students were waiting for these computers.”
The Minister of Communication made matters worse when he noted to the angry student community that “I want to reassure you that you will be in possession of the computers. It is a question of preparing them. The Government was not obliged to make this offer to you. It’s because you’re an android generation, you’ll have them. “
Yves Emvudu Wono, head of the IT department of the Ministry of Higher Education, recently said that the computers would be distributed during the academic year. A leading opposition figure in Yaounde was quoted as saying that even a small business center in Douala is capable of supplying Cameroon will a million laptop computers.
However, Speaking of the state of progress of this project, Mr Emvudu Wono said: “the first part including all the administrative procedures has been finalized. Cameroon has already fulfilled all its specifications. All those involved, namely the Ministry of Higher Education, the Ministry of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, the Caisse Autonome d’Amortissement and the Prime Minister’s office have already fulfilled their part in this long procedure. The other stage concerns universities. It was necessary for the Ministry of Higher Education to develop the modus operandi and discuss it with the heads of these academic institutions. Now these institutions are working to produce the list of beneficiary students. As for our third step, the Chinese designer started manufacturing these machines. We must speed up the preparation of the lists. We should not be late when the computers are available. “
As a reminder, it was during his speech on the 10th of February 2016 that the Head of State made the announcement of the donation of computers to students of state universities. Jacques Fame Ndongo, the Minister of Higher Education, added that the objective of the project was to provide 500,000 Cameroonian students with computer tools to link them to the digital university economy.
By Chi Prudence Asong