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Biya Invited To Awing 

By Joe Dinga Pefok — Ndong Awing Cultural and Development Association, NACDA, has invited President Paul Biya to visit Awing Village, Santa Sub-Division, Mezam Division of the Northwest Region, on November 17, 2012.

NACDA wants President Biya to see what the Awing people have been able to realise through their self-reliant development efforts.

The occasion will be the Golden Jubilee celebration of NACDA, which was created on December 23, 1962, by sons and daughters of Awing, “with the goal of uniting around the self-reliant development of Awing Fondom, creating an atmosphere of peace, promoting its diverse cultural and social acumens, and projecting a good image of the Fondom”.

This information was disclosed in Douala on June 23, 2012, by the Chairman of the Organising Committee of NACDA’s Golden Jubilee Celebration, Ntumfor Barrister Nico Halle. He made the disclosure while presenting the preparations and plan of Golden Jubilee which has been placed under the patronage of the Minister of Culture.

The occasion in Douala, which was the mid-year General Assembly meeting of NACDA, was attended by delegates from the Association’s braches nationwide. The meeting was honoured by the presence of HRH Fon Fozoh II of Awing and several Sawa Chiefs who were among special guests at the meeting. 

Ntumfor Nico Halle said the Association will first send a correspondence to President Biya, to brief him on what the sons and daughters of Awing have, with their dynamic Fon, been able to do through self-reliant development efforts, under the canopy of NACDA.

He said the correspondence will then be followed by a formal invitation letter to the Head of State.

The Chairman of the Golden Jubilee Organising Committee said NACDA will also invite Prime Minister Philemon Yang, some members of Government, foreign diplomats in Cameroon, and serving and former Northwest Governors.

Celebrating Achievements

Ntumfor Nico Halle, also a former President General of NACDA, said the Golden Jubilee will be an occasion for NACDA to celebrate achievements. He cited an electrification project in the Awing Fondom, which has already swallowed over FCA 400 million, Awing Palace rehabilitation project to which over FCFA 300 million has been pumped, as well as numerous roads, health and education projects.

Nico Halle as well cited the Women Empowerment Centre Project by NACDA’s Women’s Wing, to which over FCFA 250 million has been invested. He referred to the Women’s wing as the backbone of NACDA.  

The reputed peace crusader also stressed on the value of peace, asserting that no matter the self-reliant spirit of a people, there can be no meaningful development when there is no peace in the society. He asserted that if NACDA has been able to achieve these much, it is also thanks to the peace that generally reigns in the country, as well as amongst the people of Awing. 

With regards to preparations for the Golden Jubilee celebration, Organising Committee Chair said a lot of progress has been made by both the committee as well as different sub-committees which are all seriously at work, to ensure a resounding success for the jubilee celebration.

Amended NACDA Constitution

Another highlight of the NACDA meeting in Douala was the presentation of an amended constitution of the association by Nico Halle. He was also the Chairperson of the 10-man committee that was selected during the 2011 mid-year NACDA General Assembly meeting which held in Kumba, to work on the project to amend the constitution. This followed observations by most NACDA members that several articles in the Association’s constitution had outlived their usefulness.

At the end of the presentation, the Halle-led committee received standing ovation from the delegates to the meeting, for a job well done. The delegates, who observed that the amendments will now make the amended constitution of the association very inclusive, unanimously adopted it. 

The amended constitution clearly specifies the role of the Fon of Awing as an institution, in working to advance the development initiatives of NACDA. The amended constitution also urges sons and daughters of Awing to take proper care of their Fon. 

NACDA Spreading Across The World

Meanwhile, in a keynote address at the occasion, the President General of NACDA, Peter Ntsonkefo’o Akote, presented a balance sheet of his team’s management of the Association in the last two years.

He cited several development projects in Awing which his team either inherited and is continuing with or initiated. He cited several development projects or donations to some educational and health institutions in Awing Fondom.

Ntsonkefo’o Akote noted that NACDA is growing from strength to strength and is also rapidly spreading across the world. He said, in the last two years, there has been an increase in the number of the Association’s branches at home and aboard.

In the Diaspora, for example, he stated that new NACDA branches have been created in Switzerland, South Africa and Northern Texas in the United States, among others. The President General also noted that some Awing sons and daughters in the Diaspora have been donating to the village, in collaboration with the National Executive of NACDA. He handed to the Fon of Awing one of such donations, a new microscope donated by an Awing son in the United States, for a hospital in the village.

Ntsonkefo’o Akote was also all praises for the Fon of Awing, for his untiring support to the development projects in the Fondom. He noted that, at times, Fon Fozoh II, an engineer by training, gets onto a caterpillar himself to assist in a road construction project in the village.    

The President General saluted the goodwill gestures of the Swiss and German Embassies in Cameroon, towards the wellbeing of the people of Awing Fondom. He said the two embassies are separately allocating funds for two water catchment projects in Awing. He also expressed NACDA’s gratitude to the Cameroon Government, for numerous socio-economic development projects in Awing.   

Learning Awing Dialect 

The President General of NACDA urged all sons and daughters of Awing to take interest in learning to read and write in the dialect. Ntsonkefo’o Akote saluted an ongoing project by a group, to translate some books in the Holy Bible into the Awing dialect.

He said NACDA Executive Bureau was mapping out strategies to promote the learning and writing of the Awing dialect. As one of the strategies, he said a special prize will be awarded to any Secretary of a NACDA branch who will write his end-of -year report to the National Executive in Awing dialect.

Before ending his address, the National President of NACDA paid glowing tribute to an illustrious son of Awing, Nico Halle, whom he said provided a bulk of the funds to organise the Douala meeting. 

Other highlights of the NACDA meeting, which was coordinated by the Secretary General of the Association, Prof. Samuel Atechi, included a word from NACDA National Women’s President, a word from NACDA’s National Youth President, the presentation of the Awing Education Fund (a Diaspora initiative), and Royal Blessings.

Welcome addresses presented earlier at the opening phase of the meeting came from Maxwell Mbako, NACDA Bonaberi Branch President as well as from John Ndangle Kumase, the Mayor of Douala IV (Bonaberi), who coincidentally is native of Awing.

First published in The Post print edition no. 01354

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