On the occasion of the 52nd National Day of the Republic of Cameroon, the High Commissioner of the Republic of Cameroon to the Republic of South Africa, His Excellency Mr Anu’a-Gheyle Solomon Azoh-Mbi, hosted an event at the Pretoria Country Club on 20 May 2024.

The event welcomed members of the diplomatic corps, Honourable Madame Boitumelo Moloi, Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour, other distinguished guests, and fellow Cameroonians.

“This day is the day Cameroon began their journey towards building a new Cameroonian nation with one system, one soul,” Azoh-Mbi said.

With 250 ethnic groups and 200 different languages, Cameroon is intent on nationhood. They reflect on the vision of their founding fathers to create a new nation out of their chequered history, compounded by countless internal centrifugal forces. Cameroon dedicates itself to building a nation where all citizens are blessed with good health, happiness, and hope. More than five decades later, there is reason for joy and jubilation, and there is reason for hope for tomorrow.

His Excellency President Paul Biya stated that democratic freedoms and liberties are fully instituted and protected, and the institutions of political and social governance continue to be perfected. It is in this light that Cameroon prepares to move into elections in 2025.

Economic opportunities for all have been expanded, and numerous prospective projects continue to come to fruition in various sectors, including roads, ports, hydroelectric dams, telecommunications facilities, and many more. Social infrastructure such as schools, universities, and sporting stadiums have been constructed throughout the national territory.

H.E. Mr Anu’a-Gheyle Solomon Azoh-Mbi conveyed the warmest congratulations and best wishes to the government and people of South Africa as they celebrate 30 years of freedom. This year also marks 30 years of diplomatic relations between Cameroon and South Africa. Bilateral relations over the last three decades have been cordial, and progression continues to grow and expand in diverse sectors. Both countries are determined to revamp and revitalise the framework of bilateral relations and cooperation. Through the establishment of a Cameroon-South African joint commission, which will merge the two existing cooperation entities — the senior officials’ meeting and the joint committee — there is hope that negotiations will be concluded in time for Cameroon to host the first session of the joint commission by the end of the year.

Raising a toast:

“In honour of the Republic of Cameroon celebrating 52 years of unity and 30 years of friendship with the Rainbow Nation of the Republic of South Africa.”

Ms Moloi congratulated Cameroon on their 52nd National Day. Minister Mashego-Dlamini visited Cameroon in October 2022, which was followed by an official working visit of the South African Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, from 3-5 April 2023. Minister Pandor’s visit affirmed South Africa’s willingness to strengthen cooperation with Cameroon in sectors such as agriculture, mining, education, health, science, and innovation.

There is room for improvement in trade between the two countries, which is largely in favour of South Africa. Products exported to South Africa from Cameroon include rubber, sawn wood, and iron pipe fittings, while South Africa exports refined petroleum, fruits and juices, wine, and manufacturing components to Cameroon, among other products.

The event was vibrant, and guests enjoyed some authentic Cameroonian food and traditional dancing.

by Marion Kate