IAC New Year Message

By IAC Admin Date Thu 3rd, Dec 2015, 18:18

Fellow Cameroonians,

On behalf of the I Am Cameroon Movement, please accept my heart felt wishes for the New Year 2016!

It has been three years since we launched the I Am Cameroon movement. Three years since we embraced a simple idea that will inspire, educate and engage the people of Cameroon to accept and assume responsibility for the development of Cameroon. In three years we have engaged tens of thousands of Cameroonians at home and abroad. We have brought the spirit of the movement to your living rooms, your alumni association meetings, association meetings, njangis, universities, highs schools, colleges and conference halls. In three years we have heard your voices of hope and encouragement, we have heard your voices of despair and frustration. In three years we have engaged the young and the not so young, the rich and the not so rich, we engaged those in government and those outside government, we have engaged businesses and we have engaged the civil society. We have been welcomed with open arms in some places and we have been chastised as dreamers in other places. One thing is clear, in all the engagement that we have had, our conviction that change will come to Cameroon only when we change the way we think and act remains unshaken. As a matter of fact my conviction in our mission is stronger today that ever.

If this movement must succeed in its mission we must take advantage of what we have learnt in the last three years.  Firstly that change does not come overnight, it may take a generation to transform Cameroon but that journey must begin now.

Secondly, if change must come to Cameroon then it must begin with you and me, each one of us must become actors and not spectators in the destiny of our beloved country.

Thirdly, if change must come then it will take a mobilization of millions of people to believe and see the possibilities of a different tomorrow. This will mean generating the resources that will enable the spirit of this movement to reach and touch the hearts of people in places far and near.

Fourthly, that we must think about change within context of everything that we do as citizens. It begins with the respect of human dignity, accepting that every Cameroonian has a right to basic necessities and opportunities, but also that every Cameroonian has responsibilities towards the country and towards each other.

In 2016, we must begin to look ahead for eventual opportunities that will be transformational for our country. In 2018 there will be a unique opportunity if Presidential and legislative elections are called. We cannot wait until 2018 to be prepared to embrace a new future for our country, we must begin now to educate and mobilize our people to be registered to participate in the electoral process. We must identify the right candidates who share our values to fill run for legislative positions. We must identify the right candidate to run for President of the Republic. To do this we must bring together the splintered factions of interest and put country first before self. We as a people must look beyond the colors of our political affiliation, and personal interest to the colors of our nations flag – green, red and yellow.  One Nation, One People, One Destiny! Unless we are able to join forces, we will loose an opportunity of a lifetime to take the destiny of our country - our people into our hands. 

In 2016, we can no longer just expect things to happen, we must make things happen. If you believe there is need for change, do not just like us on Facebook or share our post; support what you believe in, make a financial commitment, take action, bring your talent and skills, let us join forces that will unleash a wave of change across the country.

In 2016, I ask that you look beyond yourself and your immediate family; I ask that you think of the mother who may lose her life in childbirth on today, because we as a people failed to provide the healthcare to ensure a safe delivery of our children; I ask you think about a young girl who may never get the opportunity to get the education that she needs to empower her to contribute more to the Cameroonian society; I ask that you think about the 45 year old who since graduating from university 20 years ago has never had a job because there are just no opportunities for employment; I asked that you think about the businessman whose bills will go unpaid for the next 6 months and yet his family to feed, or the retiree who will retire on January 1 and will have to travel to Yaoundé repeated to get paid his hard earned pension. Today a citizen will have a bitter encounter with a police officer; a custom officer or a civil servant while another will fail to get justice from our courtrooms. These scenarios are challenges that ordinary Cameroonians face everyday. These people are human beings like you and me; they have their fears and wants, they have aspirations to feed and cloth their children and offer them opportunities to achieve their wildest dreams. It is for these people and all of us that we must accept and assume responsibility, so that the trajectory for change could be different for millions.

As we look ahead to the New Year, there will be those that will stand by and walk with us on this long, treacherous and yet necessary journey; but there will be those who will be cynical about change, those who have long given hope or have become complacent with the system. There will be those who will cast aspersions on our champions and supporters as being the opposition and of course those that will feel threatened by the objectives of the movement. Let me be very clear, ours is not a political party, this is a movement that puts the interest of the most vulnerable Cameroonians first; we seek no political appointments but will support those who share our values. We are for no one and oppose no one. We will extend a hand to anyone, irrespective of your political leaning. Ours is an open tent to every Cameroonian that will accept and assume responsibility for the development of Cameroon.

To paraphrased Former United States President John Kennedy …the problems of the world cannot be solved cynics or skeptics whose horizons are limited by obvious realities…we need women and men to dream of thinks that never were and ask…why not. The fight to build a better Cameroon is not one without obvious challenges. We cannot however allow our dreams to be blindsided by these challenges, but we must embrace the opportunities that change will bring to our people.

Let me take moment to reflect on the lives of the innocent people that have taken away tragically by the ruthless, extremist terrorist group called Boko Haram. Let once more voice our strongest condemnation of violence as a means to an end. We call on every Cameroonian of good faith to join us in this condemnation.

Finally let me wish each one of our supporters, champions and leaders a Happy and Prosperous New Year 2016.

Long Live Cameroon