Cameroon: Silicon Mountain, Road Safety - Hon. Malomba Esembe Seeks British Support

Damaged building that was part of the torched district hospital in Kumba (file photo).

The Member of Parliament for Buea Urban Constituency on June 22, 2020 met the British High Commissioner to Cameroon, His Excellency Rowan James Laxton.

Ten years after it was first mooted, Silicon Mountain, the community of young entrepreneurs transforming great business ideas into Internet applications or apps, in Buea in the South West Region, has gained worldwide renown. It was in this light that Hon. Malomba Esembe, the Member of Parliament, MP for Buea Urban Constituency, on Monday, June 22, 2020, met with the British High Commissioner to Cameroon, His Excellency Rowan James Laxton, at his residence in Yaounde.

The High Commissioner said they discussed the national policy on road safety and Information and Communication Technology, ICT, especially in terms of support and partnership with members of the Silicon Mountain start-ups and entrepreneurs. Hon. Esembe, who is also the Executive President of the Network of Cameroonian Legislators for Road Safety, LEGIS-SECOUROUTE, described Her Majesty's government as an important development stakeholder.

"We presented the needs of people in my constituency to see what support we can get from the British government and people. I am happy the High Commissioner shares our views on how to help the Silicon Mountain to grow. These young people do great work with little means," the MP said. "We also talked about deaths on our highways and the need to sensitise drivers and other road users. As Executive President of the Network of Cameroonian Legislators for Road Safety, this matter is of great concern to me," he explained.

According to Effansa Simon Balimba, owner of Helis Start-up in Buea, Silicon Mountain today boasts over 1,000 entrepreneurs, operating in Fako Division in the South West Region; with some having moved over to Douala in the Littoral Region because of the conflict in the North West and South West Regions. Amongst some of the world famous applications developed by members of Silicon Mountain are Njoko and Akwa Jobs, both job search engines. Effansa says Silicon Mountain's greatest need for now is venture capital or investments in their activities by partners to transform business ideas into formidable industries.

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