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Biya Confesses But Fails To Repent 

CameroonPostline.com — On December 31, President Biya took the podium for the umpteenth time to deliver his end-of-year speech to Cameroonians. According to many respondents that The Post interviewed, they listened to a repetitious parakeet; the speech had low value content, since it only mimicked repetitions of past speeches.

President Biya’s speech, tasteless as it was, just like all the other speeches he has made over the years, was more of a lament of the plight of the nation and his failure to steer the ship of state towards development and prosperity than an inspiration for a crumbling nation. “He was able to identify some of the shortcomings that have been witnessed in the functioning of the Government.

But we thought that, as a leader, if you identify a problem, you should be able to provide a solution. He never mentioned any solutions,” said a respondent. Some respondents think President Biya is confused, his speech was incoherent. He claimed that he was disappointed with his Ministers. All of which begs the question — if government officials aren’t delivering, unemployment is still a burning issue, corruption is still rife, Cameroon remains backward… who is responsible?

Instead of “hitting the table hard to spur his indolent appointees,” the President opted for a safe, comfortable position on the pedestal and passed the buck, as it were, while he reeled off Cameroon’s woes, the respondents observed. According to our respondents, the true leadership failure is evident in the inability of the Head of State to live up to his abundant promises and slogans. After the speech, they seemed to begin to see why the New Deal regime has been spiralling out of control.

“He seemed to express surprise as if he lives and works elsewhere rather than in Cameroon and asked more questions than gave answers,” another respondent asserted. Biya alluded to a management crisis at the level of ministries, something he gave the impression that he is not party to. Here, the respondents think that mere denouncement of the misdeeds and sloppiness of government officials is not enough, the President should take action!

If he sounded hard and worried about government inaction, Biya did not tell Cameroonians what role the chief executive of the country has been playing, not to slow down growth and development. He left Cameroonians with no choice but to guess. “Tactically, he avoided making further promises.” The respondents accuse Biya of downplaying his responsibilities as the chief overseer of government business and think that the ball bounces back into his court.

First published in The Post print edition no 01495

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