Cameroon Defence Forces, a Veritable Actor for Socio-Economic Development

The Cameroon Defence Forces have been an active participant in the socio-economic development of the nation through services offered by its specialized departments.

Emmanuel Ngota

Currently, peace and development operations are complex issues that require increase cooperation and communication amongst all parties involved including the military. Over the past decades, the linkages between the Defence Forces and development have greatly increased. This change is due to the increasing acceptance that any Republican Army must participate in building its country. It is within this framework that, the Cameroon Defence Forces have been an active participant in developing multi-sartorial socio-economic projects aimed at providing quality and affordable services not only to soldiers but to all Cameroonians.

The Military Engineering Corps

Let’s take the Military Engineering Corps who over the years have portrayed the image of a formidable and an intelligent corps, capable of merging socio-economic roles and military goals which are sometimes inevitable, practical and desirable. Beside their traditional military task of supporting mobility of troops and counter mobility of enemies, the Military Engineering corps has since its creation in 1970 embarked on the construction of major projects thanks to the more than 155 heavy and light machines and equipment procured by the Head of State , Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, President Paul Biya. The institution has been the very first military construction unit in Africa to be awarded a road construction contract by the World Bank. The ongoing project attributed by this monetary institution focused on the construction of the Mora-Dabanga –Kousseri 205 km road.  They are also the author of the dike in Maga , the Bertoua and Sangmelima main markets, the Ngaoundere Parcours vita, the fishing village in Isangele. The rehabilitation of the Yaounde, Douala, Bamenda Parcours vita and the urban roads in Douala and Maroua, the maintenance of the Akwa-Isangele –Akwa earth road in Bakassi, the building of classrooms, and boreholes in some divisions in the Logone and Chari Divisions of the Far North Region are just some of the key projects that the Defence forces through its Military Engineers have constructed to the benefit of the Cameroon population.

The capacity of the corps to complete its project on required deadlines have given it an added value, for they consider each task as a mission, and he who talks of a mission in the military knows it’s all about the respect of deadlines, rapidity, assiduity and punctuality in service. It equally prides itself with its ability to carry out projects in hostile and difficult environment and at a cheaper rate. This has been some of the core values that have made the corps to gain the confidence of many development partners in the construction of social facilities.

The Navy law enforcement missions at sea via visits, boarding, search and seizure (VBSS) operations leading to inquiry of a suspected ship aids in the protection of the vital belongings of the state present at sea. The fight against illegal fishing, illicit traffic of goods and services, maritime pollution, illegal immigration have very much helped in the economic stability of Cameroon.

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