Mbozeko Brice of the Dance for Development group is winner of the first prize of a competition launched by the UNESCO to depict violence on Cameroonian youths in pictures or graphics.
Brice and his group submitted explicit pictures if the sufferings of young Cameroonians caused by violence in households and society.
He says his inspiration for the photographs was as a result of daily observations in his local community, coupled with the unrest going on in the North West and South West regions of Cameroon.
The seven laureates aged between 15-35 of this competition were picked from a wide range of 64 submissions from across the national territory.
They were awarded UNESCO recognition attestations and cash prizes between one hundred thousand and two hundred and seventy thousand CFAF.
UNESCO Fighting Hate and Violence
Government speakers from the education sector held talks with some leaders of youth advocacy groups under the theme “How to build peace and living together in Cameroon.”
In a question and answer session, the government officials responded to very pertinent worries geared at promoting peace.
“Building a strong curricula in schools is very important to create peace. Bringing in equity in opportunities for both English speaking and French speaking Cameroonians will help stabilize peace in the country.” Minister of Secondary Education, Dr. Nalova Lyonga said.
The Secretary General in the Ministry of Basic Education, Dr. Asheri Kilo also underscored efforts made to ensure peace is developed in young learners at an early stage.
“We teach basic live skills and civic education. We also Counsel young people in schools against violence. Literacy centres have been opened for people of all ages where learners are thought and set up as entrepreneurs,” Asheri Kilo said.
Context of the UNESCO Peace Building Mission
This ceremony takes place in a context marked by a socio-political crisis in some regions and the resurgence of hate speech and xenophobia.
It was a forum to strategize on how to encourage the youth to be actors of peace, social cohesion and harmonious living together in Cameroon and also to implement all the initiatives and all the relevant means for a real return of peace in Cameroon.
The current context is also marked by the implementation of the Peace building Fund of the Secretary General of the United Nations, the operationalization of the activity “Production of training/awareness and self-training materials and tools for women and youth” and the commemoration of the International Day of Living Together in Peace.
The setting up of this contest and especially the exchange between the youth and the members of the government is justified by the need to involve the youth in the actions of consolidation of peace and harmonious living together.
This is to make the youth aware of the consequences of violence and hate speech, which lead to the weakening of national integration.
It is also to involve the youth in the fight against tne scourges of hate, xenophobia, tribalism and violence.
Bruno Ndonwie Funwie