St. Veronica Medical School Matriculates 15th Batch

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Cultural Essayist, George Ngwane making an address on the occasion

Cultural Essayist, George Ngwane making an address on the occasion

By Anthony Njie

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Four hundred and thirty-one students have been formally admitted to study at the St Veronica Higher Institute of Midwifery and Nursing, Buea, Southwest Region, for the 2013 academic year.

The freshmen took the matriculation oath Friday, November 7, 2013, before school authorities, some dignitaries and other returning students.

Cultural essayist and guest speaker at the event, George Ngwane, exhorted the students to blend civic responsibility and health care service delivery in a bid to practise their profession with zeal.

While admitting the various reasons which could have prompted them to opt for the profession, he, however, cautioned that by the time they will be leaving the institution, the end goal should first be to save lives.

The medical profession has been plagued by the accumulation of wealth, cumbersome bureaucratic procedures and very little value for human life, Ngwane bemoaned, stressing that the freshmen should break away from the routine of the system.

“People will give you awards, but God rewards. Make of interpersonal communication or psycho-therapy the foundation of your vocation and you will certainly excel,” he said.

On her part, the Administrator of St. Veronica Medical School, Mrs. Francisca Biaka, expressed gratitude to the Southwest Regional Delegation of Public Health for providing financial support, academic awards and student internship opportunities to the school over the years.

This booster, combined with the efforts of the staff and the commitment of students, she noted, will provide effective training for medical students and improve service quality in the health domain.

Students’ worries for employment opportunities were also echoed in the event through their representative, Theresa Achuo, who invited the school’s partners to canvass for avenues in the job market.

St Veronica Medical School went operational in 1998 with an enrollment figure of about 18 students; 15 years after it is still contributing to training health experts in society.

 

AfDB President Is African Of The Year

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By Anthony Njie

African Development Bank Group President, Donald Kaberuka, has been named 2013 African of the Year.

He was rewarded for his achievements in mobilising funds for infrastructure projects on the continent.

According to an African Press Organization press release, the 50,000-dollar award which is sponsored by Nigeria’s Daily Trust newspaper was announced Thursday, November 8, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia during the African Media Leaders Forum.

Commenting on the award, Tanzania’s erstwhile Foreign Minister and former Secretary-General of the then Organisation of African Unity, Salim Ahmed Salim, said it is a reward for “his bringing to fruition the idea of domestically financed development.”

The Africa50 Fund is a game-changer in the delivery of infrastructure, Slim Ahmed said, adding that Africa must take ownership of its development.

“We are proud to honour an idea whose time has come. Dr. Kaberuka has shown what Africa should do,” he said.

Through the platform of Africa50 Fund, the institution has been able to leverage for infrastructure financing for transformational development projects from African central bank reserves, pension and sovereign wealth funds; the African Diaspora; and high net worth individuals on the continent.

The Fund was endorsed in May 2013 by African Finance Ministers during the Bank’s Annual Meetings in Marrakech, where Kaberuka underscored the critical role of infrastructure in Africa’s development. Image

“The one thing which can really slow down the recent performance in its tracks is infrastructure,” he said. “No country in the world has been able to maintain seven percent GDP growth and above (sustainably) unless the infrastructure bottleneck is overcome.”

The African Development Bank will play a lead role in the Fund, Kaberuka continued: “It will be a vehicle which can build on the AfDB track record and financial strength as investor, financial engineer, attract local and international pools of savings, utilise smart aid and leverage that to up our funding of infrastructure. It will be a strongly rated instrument able to issue a bond of significance – a bond attractive to investors.”

The African institutions including the African Union Commission, UN Economic Commission for Africa, Regional Economic Communities, REC, Regional Development Finance Institutions, DFI, and NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency have also lauded the development efforts of this institution.

Rwandan economist, Kaberuka, leads an institution whose financial standing has been restored from the near collapse of 1995, but whose operational credibility remains a work in progress.

Elected president of the AfDB in July 2005, his institution has made giant strides in infrastructural development which earned him this award.

Kaberuka will be presented his award in a ceremony slated for January 15 in Abuja.

2012’s winner was South Africa’s former President, Thabo Mbeki.

The Forum

This award is presented within the framework of the African Media Initiative’s three-day 6th African Media Leaders’ Forum which started on November 6 this year in Addis Ababa – under the theme: “The African Media in the Last 50 years and the Future.”

The Forum was geared at igniting a public debate and a heads-of-states round-table discussion to provide media leaders with a unique opportunity to engage participating heads of state in a stimulating discussion on pertinent issues around the media and on African governments’ role in expanding the media

The African Media Leaders Forum is the only forum which brings together private and independent media owners and operators from around the continent.

Participants discuss opportunities, evaluate and recommend means to strengthen the role of the African media and the future of the industry.

 

 

Bishop Rogan College Hosts Maiden Reforestation Project

By Anthony Njie

Students of Bishop Rogan College, Buea in the Southwest Region have been host to a maiden pilot project on tree planting geared towards building responsible behaviour on nature preservation.

“The exercise carried out on the school campus is only preparing a better tomorrow for us and our offspring,” said Barrister Innocent Bonu representing Liberty Eco an NGO with a bent on human rights, economic and environmental protection.

The event, which took place at the Bishop Rogan school premises, September 20, saw more than a dozen potted species of timber trees planted in the school

Bishop Bushu showing the good example by planting the first tree

Bishop Bushu showing the good example by planting the first tree

farm-yard.

Upon maturity, the selected species would be used to produce furniture, medicine and fire wood, and their leaves would serve as organic manure for future generation.

He noted that nature is in all its wonders, a gift from God for mankind to use, but the latter has abused it through the rampant felling of trees.

The legal expert said multinationals that cut down trees and plants under the guise of providing indigenes with bio-fuel are not different from human rights abusers.

Liberty Eco consultant and the brainchild of the project, Denis Kumbo, observed that human activities have altered nature’s seasonal cycle in recent years, making urgent Earth’s rescue mission.

For example, recent environmental reports on global warming in Mexico, said Kumbo, have caused unprecedented levels of flood and drought, the near extinction of biodiversity and igniting climate change which all play out to the progressive demise of humanity.

Kumbo exhorted the students and the teachers on urgent measures to tackle these environmental crises.

“Plant a tree now, for it has the potential of reversing these side effects,” he said.

Meanwhile, Bishop Rogan’s Environmental Club Prefect, Pascal Nywayi, promised to put his knowledge and skill in agriculture at the disposal of his school mates to leave a landmark not only in school but also wherever they find themselves.

To him, the only way for mankind to seek remission for the cruel deeds committed against mother Earth is to adopt an eco-friendly attitude and save the planet from imminent ruin.

The current Secretary General of Bishop Rogan Ex-students, William Lyonga, who doubles as the President of Environmental Club, said the project bodes well as teachers are eager to participate in the school farm, which will instil in students a plant-conservation mindset, and in due time, increase revenue for the school.

 

 

 

 

 

Presidential Guard Kills Suspect Burglar

Anthony Njie, Tazo Agbor* & Hugues L.T.Kamga*

A presidential guard, July 18, shot dead a young man of about 20, following a burglary attempt at the newly constructed grand stand for Reunification celebrations in Buea, Southwest Region.

The youngster, who was identified only as Nji – a DJ and bar tender in a popular pub in Buea Town, and three others, reportedly armed with machetes and clubs, gained access to the grand stand through the rear at about 3 a.m.

They reportedly forced open the door of a compartment where material is stored and started gathering some of the expensive equipment therein. The guard on duty who spoke off the record said he took over from his colleague at about 1 a.m when it was raining heavily and, after sometime, he decided to patrol the area according to routine.

He said some unusual noise coming from the back of the grand stand caught his attention. “I immediately rushed to the warehouse with my flashlight then, bingo! I saw four people,” the guard said. He said as soon as the four charged at him, he fired his gun in the air to scare them. At the sound of the gun, the guard said they turned around and took to their heels and he ran after them, asking them to stop or he would shoot.

“I fired at them when they wouldn’t stop,” the guard told his colleagues at about 8 a.m that morning. He said he brought down one of them while three escaped. “I was compelled to open fire when they kept running; unfortunately, he was perhaps the youngest among them,” he said expressing sorrow to the deceased’s family, but added that it served as proof to his hierarchy of the recurrent thievery they have been reporting.

We

Guard pulling out corpse of suspect thief from where he was shot

Guard pulling out corpse of suspect thief from where he was shot

learnt that there was a similar burglary a few months ago and the thieves made away with stacks of window panes and electrical materials. After a post-mortem was carried out on the deceased body and it was identified as Nji – a boy who grew up around the Military Camp at Long Street in Buea. His remains were then taken to the Buea Regional Hospital mortuary. The police have opened investigations to track down the other three suspects. (*National Polytechnic and UB Journalism Students ) Read more of this post

Cameroonians Advised To Eat Much Plant Food

By Anthony Njie

Cameroonians have been advised to feed mostly on fruits, legumes and vegetables in a bid to remain sound and healthy.
The National Coordinator of World Fascination Plant, Dr. Justin Okolle gave the advice to participants at a working session to celebrate the International Day of Plants on May 21, at the Delegation of Research and Innovation, Buea.
“The tendency nowadays is to under look those who feed on natural sources of food like tubers, legumes or fruits, unaware of the fact that this form of diet constantly removes toxic waste from our body,” Okolle said.
Fast foods which are highly purchased, he continued, have been proven by scientists worldwide to be the leading cause of cancer-related diseases due to high concentration of preservatives used during their packaging process.
The toxic waste found in these tins could, in the long-term, be the source of severe body dysfunctions and, in the worst case scenario result in an incurable infection.
Okolle revealed that research in human anatomy has found glaring similarities between the long digestive system of herbivorous animals and that of human, certainly designed to process the food we eat and to extract glucose; unlike carnivorous animals such as the cat or the dog, with very short intestines which explains why they crave for meat.
Apart from the medicinal and supernatural values of some plants like

Preserving more than 200 of the world's medicinal plant species growing on the slope of  West Africa's highest Mountain remains an unending struggle.

Preserving more than 200 of the world’s medicinal plant species growing on the slope of West Africa’s highest Mountain remains an unending struggle.

the lemon grass and garlic, participants were equally drilled on the role they play in general in the sustainability of the ecosystem; mainly by reducing soaring temperatures caused by green house gases, avoiding earth erosion and landslides, and sustaining the unending food chain above which Mankind sits.
A Forester working with ERUDEF, Asa’a Lemawah, appealed to the public for the conservation of the Southwest Region’s forest which is keeping precious tree species about to go extinct.
“Cameroon is harboring 15 of the world’s 32 most endangered tree species and is ranked 16 on the list of countries growing these scarce species, some used in treating ailments like prostate cancer. Though we have been involved in seed planting to revive some of those species, the success has been a mild one. That is why we call on you to adopt a responsible behaviour toward the environment and to compensate what we take from mother Earth by planting trees proportionately to the number of people in our Family.” She entreated participants
Lessons on nursing yam and plantain tubers for massive farm production were also taught to participants.

Southwest Traditional Wrestling Shifts Into High Gear

By Anthony Njie

Southwest Indigenous Traditional Wrestling Competition, fondly dubbed “pala pala”, is now in full swing four weeks after it officially kicked off.

During the past weeks, traditional wrestlers from various villages in Buea have converged at the host field in Bakweri Town at 4 pm on Sundays to contest.

Children, men and women, including foreigners, all throng to the pala-pala field to watch the wrestlers. Those competing in the ring are as diverse in their profile as the thrilled crowd. Other than strength, pala pala requires skills to throw an opponent to the ground.

Seven villages are actively taking part in the game’s zone battles under the watchful eyes of Fako Indigenous Traditional Wrestling Association, FITWA, a regional body operating under FECALUTTE that recently got a new executive headed by Prince Adolf Bibi Molua.

The Regional Second-Vice President of FITWA, Hans Kulu Lykoko, has a positive appraisal of the event so far, thanks to the support of various chiefs, the organising committee and the community.

He hopes things will continue in this light.

Kulu, however, says they still have a few challenges in organising the event.

“We lack first aid services for some wrestlers who suffer from bruises and injuries. We ought to have helped some injured children, unfortunately we could not,” he noted.

“But some benevolent bodies have promised to soon see into that problem,” he enthused.

“There is also the case of some wrestlers who at times are not satisfied with the referee’s decision in a fight, then threaten to interrupt the jury, but such fellows are sanctioned by being deducted some points,” Kulu said.

“Pala pala” fight traces its roots to ancient Bakweri clans where indigenes competed to prove their supremacy and defend the honour of their respective villages. Nowadays little has changed; fighters are very much driven by the honour and legacy this event carries than any other external factors.

“I feel very happy to take part in the competition simply because it is the best way to portray my identity to the world, while entertaining them,” says Eric Muambo, a senior wrestler.

“I think each fighting group is here to defend the reputation of its village.  I also learnt that a cash prize has been set aside for the group that will emerge

wrestlers in a Tango

wrestlers in a Tango

victorious; it is a token to motivate all of us to give in the best,” another wrestler said.

FITWA Zone A President, Fred Njie, says athletes will be selected based on their performances, mainly in the senior, junior and female categories.

They will then receive training on free style wrestling in a bid to prepare them for national and international competitions.

After the fourth week of fight, fixtures show Bokwai Village topping the list with 22 points, followed by Bonakanda and Great Soppo, with 18 and 17 points, respectively.

Bova, Bokwango and Bwassa villages are neck-to-neck with 11 points each, and Buea Town is last with 4 points.

The competition continues in Bokwai, which will be the host venue for the next four weeks.

“It is a routine that we move to another venue after wrestling for a month,” Kulu said.

Cameroon rekindles hope for 2014 World Cup qualifications.

 

By Anthony Njie

Image

Cameroon supporters ready to cheer up their team

 Cameroon Indomitable Lions have rekindled the hope to qualify for the 2014 World Cup competition in Brazil after defeating the Hawks of Togo 2-1 last Saturday, March 23th 2013 at the Yaoundé Ahmadou Ahidjo football stadium.

Cameroon Lions were in dyer need of securing victory in this home encounter in a bid to maintain a favourite position in their pool. So the squad took to the field with a somewhat low morale in the first 45 minutes,  to the benefit of its adversary.

Cameroon’s coach, Jean Paul Akono relied more on an offensive play strategy to mount pressure on the adversary team and create goal opportunities, but the Hawks of Togo played along, building a double defence wall that stretched to the middle field. Togolese squad waited more often on counter-attacks moves to outsmart the Lions. A golden opportunity to make a difference came at the 31th minute when Togolese player donning jersey number 18 missed a dual against keeper Carlos Kameni.

The Lions hit hard on the Togolese defence line looking for foul play. The tactic finally paid off as referee Jamel  Abudi blew a penalty against Togolese defender, Vincent Bodou for pushing Jean 2 Makoun within the 50 metres ring. Lion’s captain Samuel Eto’o transformed the opportunity into a goal at the 41st minute of play.

The Hawks would equalise few seconds to the first half.

The cheers and pump died down a little as the crowd waited with baited breath on a redemption goal from the pack of lions. A couple of changes were done here and there to revive various teams but to no avail.  It was an eminent standstill. Anxiety had reached fever-pitch level, prompting spectators to stand on their feet while they desperately await a miraculous goal. Then a turning point came with a brilliant feint to the right followed by a banana shot: “goal!!”  Eto’o Fils had given Cameroon the breakthrough it needed. The match ended with Cameroon snatching a 2-1 victory from the hawks of Togo.

This victory will improve the team’s morale enormously and provide ample time for Coach Akono to remodel some weak points still undermining their performance while the squad braces up for next encounters with Togo, Libya and Cote D’Ivoire abroad.