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Namibian President Hage Geingob Passes Away During Medical Treatment

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Namibian President Hage Geingob has passed away this Sunday, February 4th, 2024, while undergoing medical treatment. This is according to an announcement from his office. The 82-year-old leader, who had been battling cancer, breathed his last at Lady Pohamba Hospital.

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The Namibian presidency shared the news on the social media platform X (formerly Twitter), expressing gratitude to Geingob’s medical team for their efforts, although ultimately unsuccessful. Geingob passed away in the presence of his wife, Monica Geingos, and their children.

Having undergone a series of medical procedures, including a colonoscopy, gastroscopy, and biopsy on January 8, Geingob’s health had been a matter of concern. Despite the medical interventions, his condition deteriorated, leading to his demise.

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In response to the news, Angolo Mbumba, Namibia’s acting president, urged the public to remain calm. In the same statement, he announced that the “Cabinet will convene with immediate effect in order to make the necessary state arrangements in this regard.”

Geingob, who had been at the helm of Namibia since 2015, was in the final year of his second term as president. Notably, in 2014, he publicly declared overcoming prostate cancer. His death leaves a void in the nation’s leadership, and Namibia is now faced with the task of electing a new leader in the upcoming November elections.

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Mimi Mefo Takambou

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Afrique

Les allocations familiales passent de 2800 à 4500 FCFA par enfant

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Un décret du président de la République portant revalorisation des allocations familiales vient d’être signé par le président de la République.

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Le gouvernement dit multiplier les mesures d’accompagnement après l’augmentation du prix du carburant intervenu en début du mois de février. C’est dans ce cadre que Paul Boya vient de signer un décret portant revalorisation du montant des allocations familiales. Dans ce décret signé ce 21 février, le président Camerounais décide que « le montant des allocations familiales servies aux travailleurs par la Caisse Nationale de Prévoyance Sociale et par le Ministère des Finances est à compter de la date de signature du présent décret valorisé à 4500 FCFA à charge et par mois », écrit Paul Biya.

Paul Biya ajoute que son décret abroge toutes les dispositions antérieures contraires, notamment celle du 21 janvier 2016.

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C’est en effet depuis 2020 que la mesure de faire passer les allocations familiales à 4500 FCFA avait  été décidée par la Caisse Nationale de Prévoyance Sociale (CNPS) en pleine crise sanitaire de COVID-19, et devrait être reversée même aux travailleurs mis en congé technique en raison de la baisse circonstancielle de l’activité des sociétés qui les emploient pendant le Covid.

La nouvelle mesure abroge donc le décret de 2016 et fixe dorénavant le montant des allocations familiales à 4 500 FCFA par enfant à charge et par mois, soit une hausse de 60.7%.

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Les allocations familiales (AF) avaient déjà bénéficié vers 2016, d’une revalorisation de l’ordre 55,5%, passant de 1800 francs à 2 800 francs à la faveur du décret n° 2016/034 du 21 janvier 2016. Malgré le nouveau montant à verser aux parents, le montant des allocations familiales au Cameroun reste très faible en raison du cout de la vie jugé trop élevé.

La signature de ce nouveau décret entre en droite ligne des mesures d’accompagnement annoncées par le gouvernement en vue d’amortir les effets de l’inflation due à l’augmentation des prix du carburant à la pompe.

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Albert Atangana

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Security Tightened for Buea Mountain Race After Last Year’s Bombings

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With the iconic Buea Mountain Race approaching, security measures are being tightened in Buea. The Cameroon military, particularly the Rapid Intervention Battalion (BIR), is conducting thorough searches along the race route, from Molyko checkpoint to the administrative quarters. Soldiers are inspecting bushes, abandoned vehicles, and potential hiding spots for explosive devices.

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This heightened security follows last year’s incident where three bombs exploded during the race, causing injuries and tragically taking one life. The authorities are determined to prevent any such recurrence and ensure a safe and successful event.

Preparations are in full swing, with administrative officials holding a second evaluation meeting on February 20th. The emphasis is on creating a welcoming atmosphere for both Cameroonians and the 32 foreign athletes participating in the race. Buea’s mayor has also reiterated the commitment to implementing comprehensive security measures.

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The Anglophone conflict has posed challenges to the race in recent years, impacting its grandeur. However, this year, organizers remain optimistic with 602 athletes ready to compete. The course remains the same, starting from Molyko Omnisport Stadium and reaching the summit of the Chariots of Gods before returning to the stadium for the finish line.

Despite the current security situation, the Buea Mountain Race is poised to showcase athleticism, resilience, and a united spirit. The tightened security measures and dedication of organizers pave the way for a thrilling and memorable event.

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The Mount Cameroon Race, known historically as the Guinness Mount Cameroon Race, dates back to 1973, becoming a major sporting event and tourist attraction. Locally, it’s known as the “Race of Hope,” symbolizing resilience and perseverance, especially relevant in the current climate.

Mimi Mefo Info

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Celebration in Douala as Man Triumphs Over 6-Year Struggle for ID Card

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In a compelling tale shedding light on the persistent challenges faced by some Cameroonians, Nguofack Franck, a 34-year-old resident of Douala’s Deido district, hosted a joyous celebration on Monday evening to mark the long-awaited receipt of his original identity card after an arduous six-year wait.

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Franck’s ordeal commenced in 2018 when he applied for his national identity card—a document pivotal for tasks ranging from banking to voting. Unfortunately, bureaucratic hurdles ensnared his application, leaving him without official identification for years, with only a temporary cartoon copy issued for a purported three-month use while awaiting the original.

Undeterred by the setbacks, Franck remained hopeful. He persisted with numerous visits to the 9th police district in Deido, consistently following up on his original copy despite encountering repeated delays. Finally, yesterday marked the culmination of his perseverance as he collected his long-awaited ID card and was handed the elusive original.

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Overwhelmed with joy and a sense of relief, Franck opted for a unique celebration. He gathered his friends and treated them to a celebratory meal before a night of dancing and partying at a nearby club.

“This ID card may seem like a small piece of plastic, but to me, it represents so much more,” expressed Franck. “For the past six years, I’ve felt like I was living in the shadows, unable to fully participate in society. Now, I finally feel like a full Cameroonian.”

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Franck’s narrative resonates with many Cameroonians grappling with similar challenges in obtaining identification documents. The issue of delayed ID card deliveries has affected hundreds of individuals, with some waiting for their original copies for almost a decade, and tragically, some passing away without ever receiving it.

The usual process involves receiving a cartoon copy on the same day of application and obtaining the original after a three-month waiting period. However, in recent years, individuals have faced nightmarish delays, sometimes being asked to redo the entire process.

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In October of the previous year, the Delegate General for National Security (DGSN), the government entity responsible for issuing identification documents, announced plans to engage a service provider for the biometric ID cards on a Build-Operate-Transfer basis. According to Martin Mbarga Nguélé, DSGN chief, this initiative aimed to establish three autonomous biometric identity card production facilities in Yaounde, Douala, and Garoua, along with 15 contemporary biometric enrollment posts in each of the country’s ten regional headquarters.

However, as of now, no progress has been observed, leaving many Cameroonians frustrated and feeling abandoned in their struggle for identity cards. Despite these challenges, some maintain hope that the vital document will be delivered within 48 hours, offering a glimpse of optimism in the face of bureaucratic obstacles.

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