The President of the Senate,

The President of the National Assembly,

The Prime Minister, Head of Government,

The First President and the Procureur General of the Supreme Court,


Members of the Diplomatic Corps,


Officers, Petty Officers, Non-Commissioned Officers and Soldiers,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

For several years now, our country has been grappling with various threats at its borders: maritime piracy, incursions of armed groups from neighbouring countries, hostage-taking with ransom demands and, above all, the atrocities of the Boko Haram terrorist group.

As everyone knows, Cameroon is a peaceful and hospitable country. Hence, it   would have preferred a more serene environment which is more conducive to the harmonious development to which it aspires.

It must be admitted that such is not the case in the sub-region.

As a proud, united, mutually supportive, and courageous people, Cameroonians have always found and will always find the wherewithal to face every threat and meet every challenge.

In this regard, our defence and security forces are an example which I would like to commend on this solemn occasion. They are admirably performing their duty of defending the fatherland. Thanks to their devotedness, bravery and sense of sacrifice, maritime piracy has been significantly curbed. Hostage takers are relentlessly tracked down. Boko Haram has suffered severe routs and is now reduced to merely launching sporadic assaults on civilian populations or attempting cowardly attacks.

In this fierce war against our country’s enemies, many of our sons and daughters have fallen in the field of honour; others have been wounded. I would like here to pay them glowing tribute on behalf of the entire Nation.

Also, I would like to say loud and clear that their sacrifice was not in vain. Indeed, not an inch of our territory has fallen into the hands of the enemy. Our brave and hardworking people have continued to ply their trade. As a haven of peace and stability, Cameroon has witnessed an influx of thousands of refugees from every conflict area in the region, fleeing for their lives and in quest of a sanctuary.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Nonetheless, our army would not have been so efficient without the backing and support of a united and close-nit Cameroonian people, for, while the Army is the shield of the Nation, the Nation is the granite bedrock on which the Army rests. Hailing from all the regions of Cameroon, our soldiers also have always enjoyed the unanimous support of our people, from   the South, North, East or West.

Therefore, I would like to extend my very sincere congratulations to the Cameroonian people on their commitment in the struggle to defend the fatherland, particularly through vigilante groups and on their unflinching support to our army. I urge them to remain united, supportive and strong so that together, we may be able to face all challenges, as the struggle goes on and will continue unrelentingly until the final eradication of the threats looming over our beloved and beautiful country.

I also wish to extend my profound gratitude to Cameroon’s friendly countries for their valuable support in our fight against terrorism.

Young Officers of the “Peace and Emergence” batch,

It is against this backdrop that you are today joining the big family of Defence Forces.

You have chosen the military profession. This profession, one of the most beautiful in the world, is noble, demanding and exalting. It is also the only one where the ultimate sacrifice is accepted as an eventuality.

The career you have just entered requires strict discipline, unwavering loyalty to the institutions of the republic and constant availability. I urge you to carry on the duty of defending and protecting the fatherland, just like your elders who have distinguished themselves on battlefields.

Your batch name is particularly revealing in the current context. For our country, it shows the need for peace in our march towards emergence. Indeed, no nation can aspire to economic development unless it enjoys lasting peace.

Throughout your career, the baptismal name of your batch should serve as your guide and help you to always bear in mind the need to preserve peace for our country’s development.

Young Officers of the “Peace and Emergence” batch,

On this memorable day, I am pleased, on behalf of the entire Nation, to extend to you my heartfelt congratulations.

I extend my sincere appreciation to your civilian and military instructors for their seriousness and competence during your training.

I also salute your mates from brotherly and friendly countries for their success. Their presence among you is not only proof that their countries recognize the quality of the Combined Services Academy, but also bears testimony to our excellent relations with them.

Young Officers,

This ceremony is a moment of legitimate joy and pride.

However, I must remind you that our country is at war. A war being waged against us by an obscurantist and barbaric enemy.

Henceforth, you will be expected to be part of a great and noble struggle, that of defending the territorial integrity, national unity and institutions of the republic. Such is the sacred duty and prime task of our armed forces.

That is your mission.

The mission is clear.

You should accomplish it with honour and loyalty.

You should accomplish it with the full force of your patriotic commitment.

You should draw inspiration from the self-denial and sense of sacrifice of your elders.

You can count on my constant solicitude and the full support of the Cameroonian people.

Long live Cameroon’s Defence Forces!

Long live Cameroon!

Yaounde, 21 April 2017

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