CAMEROON - EQUATORIAL GUINEA : DYNAMIC SOLIDARITY

Military health personnel, ambulances, firefighters and intervention vehicles, Military Engineers, deminers, drugs, medical equipment, beddings and foodstuffs. This is how the friendly and solidarity-based humanitarian assistance deployed by Cameroon was made available in favour of Equatorial Guinea.

We remember that on Sunday March 7, this country was stroke by a pyrotechnic disaster in the city of Bata. The explosion of an ammunition depot, caused enough damage to convince the government authorities of this brother and neighbouring country, to launch an appeal for international help. Appeal to which, Cameroon responded promptly, and in the most appropriate manner.

Having being used to the management of disasters and other acts of war that have occurred in Cameroon, our personnel will use their proven experience in the medical and psychological care of victims, assistance to populations affected by the disorganization of social activities, and the depollution of the source of the tragedy and its surroundings, the disposal of explosives and the evacuation of the remnants of explosive substances. Experts from Cameroon, will also be valuable in determining the causes of this accident, in view of implementing measures to prevent future incidents.

Through this other act of solidarity towards one of its neighbours, Cameroon, champion of collective security in the Central African sub-region, highlights the notions of security proximity and comprehensiveness in the consideration of natural and anthropogenic factors falling within the ever-expanding domain of security. At the same time, our country is demonstrating to the whole continent that with limited resources but quality training, largely delivered locally, it is possible to achieve a significant degree of operational and strategic autonomy.

Our country has an army of admittedly small size, compared to the national surface area, the number of inhabitants and the evolutions of the security environment, but which fortunately is illustrated by its ability to face threats on several fronts, all different from each other likewise in their topography as in their nature of treats of which they are the epicentre.

Within our borders, there is terrorism in the Sahel, armed separatism in mountainous and forest areas, maritime piracy, the protection of refugees, the construction of the precursors of development, and outside of them, peacekeeping operations and emergency humanitarian assistance. Although intensely in demand, the Cameroonian military, nevertheless excels in all these areas, sometimes relating to sovereignty, sometimes to solidarity.

In this regard precisely, the many altruistic actions of Cameroon, induce solidarity as a new paradigm in the traditional factors of leadership. It is about the assertive will coupled with the ability to fly to the aid of neighbouring or distant States in trouble.

The Cameroonian vision of leadership also includes the ability to generate trust, to create alliances and collaboration, and not at all to arouse fear, much less to generate crises and conflicts. In addition, the United Nations Organization and the requesting countries have complete confidence in the capacities, and above all, in the competence to the Cameroonian military, as regards peacekeeping or peace restoration, security and safety missions.

Navy Captain Cyrille Serge ATONFACK GUEMO Head of Communication Division / MINDEF

Odile Pahai