Ladies and Gentlemen of the Press,

I would like to first of all welcome you. The Cameroonian people and I are very pleased to receive the President of the French Republic, Mr François Hollande

We wish to place this visit under the banner of friendship to which President François Hollande’s presence today in our midst on a State visit bears eloquent testimony. It is therefore normal that we have had cordial discussions and convergent views on the issues discussed.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The fight against Boko Haram featured prominently in our discussions. The recent deadly attacks in Nigeria and Chad are part of the long list of atrocities committed by this terrorist group which has continued to wreak death and destruction in Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon in recent months. The need for the countries concerned and the international community to pool efforts in order to end this senseless killing has never been stronger. Cameroon has remained steadfast in the face of attacks by this barbarous sect.

I commend the bravery and commitment of our soldiers who have inflicted heavy defeats on the enemy and preserved our territorial integrity. I pay tribute to our population for demonstrating admirable commitment, cohesion and solidarity. I want to state here that we will spare no effort to protect our territory and population, and prevent these obscurantist forces from halting our march towards progress.

I expressed our heartfelt gratitude to President Hollande for the support France has given and continues to give us in this struggle. I seize this opportunity to sincerely thank the other countries and international organizations for their support. Such support is even more precious to us as we have to address many security, economic and humanitarian challenges against the backdrop of this crisis. 

At the regional level, I reiterated to President Hollande Cameroon’s appreciation for France’s beneficial interventions in Mali and the Central African Republic which have helped to prevent the deterioration of the security situation and create conditions conducive to the resumption of dialogue between the warring factions.

Obviously, we also discussed the political situation in Cameroon. In this respect, I briefed President Hollande on the progress made in consolidating our democracy, especially the ongoing establishment of the institutions provided for by the Constitution, the regular organization of elections, the promotion of human rights and freedoms, etc.

I also briefed him on our determination to pursue efforts regarding governance, the fight against the embezzlement of public funds, the reduction of delays in the administration of justice and the improvement of the business climate. We reaffirmed our mutual commitment to the freedom of expression which is a reality in Cameroon with the proliferation and vitality of newspapers. However, efforts will be made by the Government, and by journalists themselves, to limit excesses.

Economically, Cameroon is pursuing its development efforts with the stated aim of becoming an emerging country. I lauded the support we are receiving from France in this respect. The successful implementation of the Debt Relief and Development Contract (C2D) and the presence of many French enterprises in Cameroon are eloquent proof of the dynamism, solidarity and solidity of our partnership.

President Hollande and I examined the issue of migration and its attendant human tragedies in recent years. This is a complex issue whose solution is not so simple. The international community should continue to explore ways and means of providing more prospects to migrants and aspiring migrants.

The upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference which will be hosted by France was also discussed. I commended President Hollande’s leadership on these key issues. Cameroon will participate in this struggle to preserve our planet.

Ladies and gentlemen of the press, those are some of my conclusions from our discussions this evening. It goes without saying that I am at your disposal to answer any questions.