Texbooks Policy: Prime Minister Clarifies MPs

The first question time plenary sitting of the March 2021 ordinary session of the National Assembly took place on March 26, 2021.

Prime Minister, Head of Government, Joseph Dion Ngute says the selection of textbooks and teaching materials in primary and secondary schools in Cameroon is a fundamental step in the process of improving the country’s educational system, stating that the reform of school textbooks on November 23, 2017 made the textbook evaluation and selection process more transparent. He spoke at the National Assembly on March 26, 2021 as he answered Hon.Njume Peter Ambang’s question related to some cacophony in the textbooks selection process stating that the process is bedevilled by corruption, confusion, abuse of power and chaos. The plenary sitting was chaired by the House Speaker Hon. Cavaye Yeguie Djibril in the presence of the Minister Delegate at the Presidency in charge of Relations with Parliament, Wakata Bolvine. Stating the achievements of government reforms, Prime Minister Dion Ngute said the “National Textbook and Teaching Materials Accreditation Board is serenely pursuing the implementation of the textbook reform and consolidating the grounds covered.’’ He said with the reform, the evaluation process has been modified. The reform aimed at reducing the cost of educational materials, through a perfect control of the number of textbooks in the curriculum and a lowering of costs on the market, select only one textbook per subject which could be used throughout the national territory for a period of six years, instead of one year as in the past. The Prime Minister, however acknowledged some cases of mistakes and stated the way they were corrected. With this, Prime Minister Dion Ngute concluded, “I can therefore confidently state that the textbook selection process is increasingly transparent, relevant and objective, and will improve over time.’’

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Forest and Wildlife Management

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Prime Minister Dion Ngute also answered Hon. Roger Nkodo Dang’s question concerning the inequalities in the distribution of the forest and wildlife financial resources between the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife and that of Finance and precarious working conditions of eco-guards. The Prime Minister in response, stated a series of measures government has been implementing in the forest and wildlife subsector through different programmes. He said government policy in the management of forest and wildlife resources puts emphasis on biodiversity conservation. To fight wildlife crime, he said, measures implemented include: the military training of eco-guards and modernisation of their equipment, strengthening of collaboration with international partners working in wildlife conservation and the acquisition of a plane to follow up protect areas. Concerning the forest resources, he talked of the decision by member States of the Central African Economic and Monetary Community, (CEMAC) to prohibit the exportation of raw timber starting from 2022.

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