Cameroon – La Francophonie: A cordial relationship

As Cameroon this 20th March 2018, joins the international community to commemorate the International Day of La Francophonie, the country also celebrates over two decades of a united walk with the International Organisation of La Francophonie, OIF.

The International Organisation of La Francophonie, OIF was born on 20th March 1970 under the name, ‘Agency for Cultural and Technical Cooperation (ACCT)’ and Cameroon became an associate member in 1975 and later a full member on 19th November 1991.

Since then, Cameroon has reaped many benefits thanks to this cooperation.

Political Benefits

OIF supported ‘More Women in Polotics’ in organising a conference on the theme, “Leadership, Female Entrepreneurship and Political Participation of Women” from 24th to 26th February 2016.

La Francophonie in partnership with the “Association Internationale des Maires Francophones” has contributed in building the capacities of staff of some government institutions.

The OIF also supported the National Council for Decentralisation.

Socio-economic Benefits

Cameroon has benefitted from the Special Development Programme, a fund set up to meet the essential needs of local communities.

Cameroon is now benefitting from the Local Development Support Francophone Programme (PROFADEL) since 2017.

The Economic Strategy for La Francophonie adopted in November 2014 has served in empowering the women and youth of Cameroon.

Technical, Cultural and Sporting Benefits

La Francophonie has promoted book expansion and publications in French through its shareholder position in CEPER (Publishing and Production Centre for Education and Research) until September 2012.

The OIF has also supported the production of some newspapers and press organs in Cameroon.

La Francophonie has granted subventions for the provision of equipment and other facilities in the audiovisual sector as well as fund projects and assist in organising cultural events like the renown ‘Ecrans Noirs’ film festival.

In the domain of sports, Cameroon athletes have been opportune to showcase talent at the La Francophonie Games.

Programmes for the Youth

La Francophonie has five key programmes which target the Cameroonian youth:

Programme for the Promotion of Youth Entrepreneurship (PPEJ)

Youth and Women Entrepreneurship Employment Promotion Programme

The Youth Intergration and Vocational Training Programme

Scholarships for Open and Distance Learning (FOAD)

L’Initiative Libres Ensemble (Free Together Initiative)

International Forum for Youth and Green Jobs (FIJEV)

These partnerships and more, go a long way to tell the story of how far Cameroon and La Francophonie have gone and how much more they intend to go.

Eleanor Ayuketah

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