Honor and Loyalty : Cameroonian Army: catalyst for development

After more than six decades devoted to building the trail-blazers of development across its national territory, the Cameroon Defence Forces are now faced with new challenges. It is grappling with an operation other than war, which entails playing the role of and maintaining its positionas catalyst forCameroon’s industrialisation.

This is certainly a difficult challenge, but the Cameroonian Army is not at all lacking in assets. It is also an opportunity to put to use institutions with proven capacities, which are just waiting to be oriented towards new objectives in order to explore other horizons. This is the case with the Joint Services Technical Training Centre (CFTA) and its neighbour the Central Repair and Automobile Construction Establishment(ECCRA). Already masters in the recovery and reconditioning of metal parts, would these two establishments not be able to start the designing and machining of engines or machine tools?

With the experience and knowledge accumulated in heavy aircraft maintenance, the Air Force could take a further step towards new ambitions. The Air Force Special Training Academy opened in Garoua would then serve as a laboratory and testingground for aviation-related technologies as a whole.

On the side of the Cameroonian Navy, wouldn’t the Naval Workshops and their floating docks be able to design equipment suitable for maritime navigation?

And what about the Military Health Research Centre (CRESAR) for the development of pharmaceutical products and derivatives adapted to our environment? What about the cartridge factory for the manufacture of newly imported weapons and ammunition?

As for the workforce, there are no worries either, as the Cameroonian Army has always been full of qualified personnel, many of whom are fresh out of local and foreign engineering schools.

With such human and technical potential, we can nurse high hopesof seeing emerge from our barracks, prototypes of agricultural tractors, aircraft, naval equipment and other machines of entirely local design, and whose invention patents would be transferred to private developers.

With the rifle in one hand, the drawing board in the other, the industrial soldier will join his brothers in arms equipped with shovels on road construction sites, and the others writing on the blackboard, disseminating knowledge to our rural children, who are the future brains and national elites.

Thus, while focusing on these objectives, our Defence Forces will contribute to the building of Cameroon’s industrial sovereignty. /-

Navy Captain

ATONFACK GUEMO,

Head of Communication Division - MINDEF