Local Youth Corner carries the voice of youth during meetings with Rt.Hon. Patricia Scotland, Commonwealth Secretary General towards a resolution of Cameroon’s pressing challenges.
Category : LOYOC Newsletter
The Commonwealth Secretary General, Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland made a five days visit to Cameroon from the 18th to the 22nd of December 2017. This was her first visit to Cameroon as Commonwealth Secretary General. In her own words, it was aimed at enabling her not only to get to know the country and its people better but more importantly, to discuss concrete ways in which the Commonwealth can support Cameroon’s efforts to address the pressing challenges it currently faces.
During her five day visit, Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland met with civil society activists from all around the country at the Hilton Hotel, Yaounde on the 21st December 2017. In a bid to hear the voices of the Cameroonian people, representatives of the Civil Society were invited to discuss on the pressing issues in the Cameroonian context. Among the organisations present was Local Youth Corner represented by its Communication and Advocacy Officer, Mambou Happy Kelly. The issues discussed came as recommendations to be tabled during the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting to be held in March 2018. The topics discussed were climate change, education, the empowerment of women especially in decision making, a greater inclusion for disabled persons and the over-arching Crisis in the Anglophone Regions of the country. These discussions ended with recommendations such as developing a more inclusive and transparent dialogue towards the resolution of the crisis. The Secretary General’s closing words were “Individually we are invisible but together we are invincible”. She thus declared a great phrase to urge all those present to seek to be part of the peacebuilding process at personal level towards ending the crisis.
Following this meeting, Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland continued to Buea on Friday, 22nd December, where she met with the community with a great focus on the youth. As one of the towns affected by the Anglophone Crisis, the Secretary General’s trip was a clear indication of her willingness to listen from all actors and touch the issue at its roots. Present at this meeting were traditional rulers, members of the civil society, and representatives of youth organizations.
Speaking on behalf of the youth was the Loyoc National Coordinator, Mr. Achaleke Christian Leke, also speaking as Youth Ambassador to the Commonwealth. His speech carried words of appreciation towards the Secretary General for taking the pain and time to come all the way to the South West Region to have a closer look at the ongoing crisis situation. He went further to highlight the fact that youths have been the main victims of this crisis, affected in their education as well as through acts of violence perpetrated in the Region. While acknowledging her position and capacity of influence, he pleaded on her to lobby for an inclusive dialogue at the highest level of decision making. The participation of Local Youth Corner in these two meetings was geared not only towards making the voices of the youth heard but more importantly to present the present situation from a youth peace builder perspective towards a lobbying process for and end to the crisis.