The 47th Youth Week has put smiles on the faces of North West youths with gifts and messages that inspire hope from the visiting Minister of Youth Affairs and Civic Education, Bidoung Mpkatt. Solidarity was at the centre of the decision to launch the week in the flood-affected area of Babessi, Ngoketungia Division where the Minister communed with youths some four months after the floods of September 9, 2012 that destroyed 59 homes, farmlands and caused some 95 families to go homeless.
In effect, the Minister travelled with didactic materials, wheelbarrows, bags of rice, maize seeds, hoes and cutlasses, amongst others, for some victims of the floods. It was also a rare moment for the Minister to inspire youths to stand by the nation and its leaders, show love and patriotism for country, commit to volunteerism and submit to core citizenship values of tolerance, hard work, solidarity and attitudes that should help Cameroon emerge.
Minister Bidoung Mpkatt told the nation's youths that it is an act of citizenship to protect the environment against climate change. He stressed that it was the commitment of the government to guarantee the visibility of actions in favour of youths that a Ministerial department was created on December 9, 2011 by the Head of State to handle youth affairs and civic education. He sounded off about actions to promote youth employment and the sensitisation of youths on the dangers of corruption.
The Minister was accompanied by the General Manager of the National Civic Service Agency for Participation in Development, Ayuketah Oswarld Tambe who had FCFA 92 million for some 715 youth volunteers trained to improve their living standards with projects approved by the government.
It was equally a moment for youths to salute the creation of the Ministry to rekindle their hopes. It was against this backdrop that the President of the North West chapter of the Cameroon National Youth Council, Prince Ngwieh Michelson Sah hailed government's programs and actions for youths to achieve their lifetime aspirations. He also featured the preoccupations of youths who want the voting age to drop from 20 to 18 and national decorations and distinctions given to for youths with immense contributions towards nation building.