22 November 2012

Cameroon: Government Launches Another Financing Mechanism for Development Projects

DevHope.com, a social network for mobilising debt-free funds, was launched in Yaounde on Thursday November 22 in a colourful ceremony chaired by the Minister of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, Emmanuel Nganoun Djoumessi.

Donor agencies, Cameroonians within and without the country as well as well-wishers willing to contribute to the socio-economic development of the country now have another financing mechanism through which they can fund parts or all of specific development projects that have direct impact on the population they want to touch. This is through a platform code-named, DevHope.com, that officially went operational yesterday November 22 through its launching by the Minister of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development (MINEPAT), Emmanuel Nganou Djoumessi, at the Yaounde Mont Febe Hotel and attended among other dignitaries by some Cabinet Ministers.

The platform, its conceiver, Jean-Emmanuel Foumbi, President, Director General of Hope Service, said is a social network for solidarity-based mobilisation of non-debt-generating resources to finance projects of general interest. In his presentation of the network, Mr Foumbi said DevHope.com offers donors the possibility to reference projects of general interest, participate in their financing through restricted contributions, interactively monitor their achievements and collect results of their impacts on final beneficiaries.

Besides increasing the visibility of projects from the Growth and Employment Strategy Paper and from communal development plans, he said, through the network, non-debt-generating, complementary and alternative funds will be raised to release budget constraints deepened by the financial and economic crises. "It will enable fundraisings from traditional donors, citizens through crowd funding and companies for the State to attain its growth objectives. Greater Accomplishments need greater resources and given the fact that foreign aid is increasingly dwindling with growing global economic crises, there is need to go for alternative financing which at the same time will not indebt the State," the PDG said. Projects for funding presented on the network, he said, will be broken down into detailed lists of needs tallying with the actual market prices for easier financing.

To MINEPAT boss, government is unwavering in raising funds to get the country to the desired development level. He said like other financing mechanisms that government had already embraced (treasury bonds, mandatory borrowing and leasing), the innovation, will particularly help councils within their communal development plans to attain optimum development. Observers said it could be an opportunity for Cameroonians in the Diaspora who might have been discouraged due to the hitherto bottlenecks in the country wherein corruption and embezzlement were rife, to easily channel their assistance to make their villages and country like or better than their host countries. At the launch, it was disclosed that over 7,000 projects are already yearning for financing on the network.

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