The decrees raising the retirement ages of the personnel come at the moment they are mobilised to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
President Paul Biya in decree No .2020/369 of 03 July 2020 raised the retirement ages of civil servants of the public health corps. As per the decree, personnel of categories « A » and « B » will henceforth retire at 60 years while those of categories « C » and « D » will retire at 55 years.
The Prime Minister, Head of Government, Chief Dr Joseph Dion Ngute in yet another decree No. 2020/3191 of 03 July 2020 specified the new retirement ages of State medical and paramedical personnel governed by the Labour Code. Henceforth, the personnel of categories « 8 to 12 will retire at the age of 60 years while those of categories « 1 to 7 » will retire at 55 years.
The decrees come at the time civil servants of the public health corps, State medical and paramedical personnel are mobilised and working tooth and nail to treat patients of the global Coronavius pandemic and using all the prescribed measures to curb the spread of the pandemic. In the face of the growing number of positive cases of the pandemic in the country, the personnel need to work with full confidence, whole-heartedly and good working conditions.
The Head of State Paul Biya before signing the decree raising the retirement ages of public health personnel had started encouraging them. In a special address to the nation on May 19, 2020 on the eve of the National Day celebrations that were void of public manifestations due to the COVID- 19 pandemic, President Biya said, « I also wish to hail the courage of Cameroonian health professionals and those assisting them. With the resources available to us, they are doing the utmost to treat those infected with the disease. Indeed, they are not giving up in the face of the gravity of COVID-19 infection. » As such, the President of the Republic told the health professionals, « The Nation, through me, congratulates and urges them to keep it up. »
The decision to raise the retirement ages of the public health professionals have come to put an end to their hitherto strike actions and complaints that contrary to other civil servants, they went on retirement earlier and specially at the time they had acquired enough skills and knowledge to invest in their profession. Government's decision therefore comes at the time the personnel needed extra motivation in carrying out their mission considering that many of them have been infected by the coronavirus and died. They have been sacrificing their health and putting their families at risk just to save humanity from the pandemic. Statistic of the evolution of the pandemic as at July 2, 2020 as disclosed during the Interministerial Committee for the evaluation and follow up of government response strategy against COVID-19 indicate the laudable efforts in treating the pandemic. As at then, there were 13,711 cases declared positive, 11,114 healed and 328 deaths.