Cameroon: National Assembly - General Code of Regional and Local Authorities Under Scrutiny

Women protest in Bamenda, Cameroon, in response to the attack on the Presbyterian School of Science and Technology on September 3, 2018, where six students were abducted.

The bill to Institute the General Code of Regional and Local Authorities was tabled during the extraordinary session of the National Assembly on December 13, 2019.

The Ngoa-Ekelle National Assembly premises was exceptionally full and busy on Friday, December 13, 2019 as Members of the National Assembly who just finished the November 2019 ordinary session two days back, all converged to get the bill government was proposing. Members of government led by the Prime Minister, Head of Government, Chief Joseph Dion Ngute as well as other national and international dignitaries among whom was the President of the Constitutional Council, Clément Atangana were also anxiously present. Then came the news from the Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Cavaye Yeguie Djibril in his opening statement. He started by recalling the provisions of Article 16 (3) of the Constitution, "The National Assembly shall meet in extraordinary session for not more than 15 (fifteen) days on a specific agenda and at the request of the President of the Republic or of one-third of its members." This heightened the curiosity and the news came, when he said the present extraordinary session concerns the "General Code of Regional and Local Authorities." Hon. Cavaye Yeguie Djibril stressed the importance of the decentralisation process, the focus of the bill submitted for the scrutiny of the Members of the National Assembly. He called on the MPs to examine the bill with all seriousness and responsibility as it represents a turning point in the life of the nation. The MPs, he said, have to leave imprints for posterity that will forever remember that Members of Parliament of the ninth legislative period gave the last kicker for the acceleration of the decentralisation process in Cameroon. After the opening session, MPs did not leave. They waited because the Chairmen's Conference held some minutes later, decided on the admissibility of the bill after which it was tabled to the entire House in plenary. The Senior Vice President of the National Assembly, Hon. Hilarion Etong who chaired this phase of the plenary sitting announced that the bill to Institute the General Code of Regional and Local Authorities will be examined by the Committee on Constitutional Laws and will be defended by the Minister of Decentralisation and Local Development, Georges Elanga Obam. Following the schedule of business in the National Assembly, the Committee on Constitutional Laws will start scrutinising the bill today, Monday, December 16, 2019 beginning at 10:00 a.m.

More From: Cameroon Tribune

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