President Paul Biya in his traditional address to the youths on the occasion of the National Youth Day, reminded young compatriots that tomorrow’s Cameroon will be built with them.
Things will certainly never be the same again as far as youth socio-economic integration is concerned in Cameroon. The start of the new “Greater Opportunities” mandate heralds hope for Cameroonian youths. Hope which President Paul Biya, has reiterated should not be lost by the youths as an avalanche of opportunities awaits them. Already, the President of the Republic announced the creation of not less than 500,000 jobs in 2019 amidst other opportunities associated to the second generation agriculture, industrialization plan as well as the digital economy. “You should therefore become committed actors of our new second-generation agricultural policy. Similarly, you should avail yourselves of the opportunities offered by the implementation of our Industrialization Plan and the development of digital technology. The goal is to achieve a level of growth commensurate with our aspiration of becoming an emerging country,” he told Cameroonian youths in his Youth Day message on February 10. The President of the Republic expressed optimism for a brighter future as he called on youths not to despair. “There is reason to be fairly optimistic, given that our growth rate is once again on the increase. According to forecasts, it could rise from 3.8% in 2018 to 4.4% in 2019 and 4.7% in 2020, with positive spin-offs for youth employment,” he noted while stating that the government will adopt measures to revive the economy. Meanwhile, the Head of State emphasised on the importance of vocational training and professionalization so that youth can acquire the skills to grab available job opportunities. “There are plans to create no less than 500 000 jobs in 2019. The Government will pursue the operationalization of a forward planning job management system. The strategic thrusts of the Priority Action Plan of the National Employment Policy will continue to be implemented,” President Biya assured while asserting that access to vocational training will be improved by diversifying sectors and increasing training in new centres. The level of training will also be improved through the establishment of the National Institute for Trainer Training and Programme Development in Yaounde. He recalled achievements made in 2018 with over 500,000 jobs created, the implementation of the Three-year Special Youth Plan with some 4,000 projects developed in the areas of agriculture, industrial, digital economy and innovation and adequate financing provided. “Despite these remarkable actions, our country continues to face the problem of youth unemployment. We all know why. Our economy is not buoyant enough to absorb the tens of thousands of youths joining the labour market each year. That is why I will continue to encourage the Government to adopt measures to revive the economy; urge economic operators from all over the world to invest in Cameroon and advise our youths to seize every available employment opportunity,” he stated.