and content speaks volumes
Cameroon’s Head of State in a tweet at 10 am local time declared he was to seek another term at the head of the West African Nation. Instead of using state-run media CRTV as in the past, President Biya used the social media. He avoided his Facebook account and preferred Twitter.
That account has more than 300.000 followers – his compatriots, international organizations, diplomatic missions, media houses and foreigners and a retweet of his message will get a wider audience. Moreover, tweeter is considered secured. No doubt more people are closing their Facebook accounts and opening new ones with tweeter.
After tweeting on his candidacy, the incumbent Head of State posted his tweet on his Facebook page. This generated comments of varied views. In Cameroon, mostly youths hang on to social media likewise the Diaspora.
The current Anglophone crisis, confirms the popularity of the social media among Cameroonian youths and the Diaspora. Once, the Head of State announced his candidacy, the news was passed on from ear to ear and the traditional media picked up the story as breaking news.
He succeeded in reaching a wider audience. In 2015, the Head of State in his address to the youths, at the eve of the National Youth Day on February 11th, referred to them as an ‘android generation’. Hence, he wanted to connect with his ‘smartphone’ compatriots.
He did not only answer to the calls (motions of support), asking him to seek a new term but he also justified his decision.
“Aware of the challenges we must take up together to ensure a more united , stable and prosperous Cameroon, I am willing to respond positively to your overwhelming calls, I will stand as Your Candidate in the upcoming presidential election.”
Once an island of peace in the troubled Central African Region, Cameroon is facing security challenges. In the north from Boko Haram, the conflict in the two English-speaking regions and in the East from rebels streaming in from the unstable Central African Republic.
Biya’s next term will be to finish the giant projects – growth boosters, started under his electoral promise of “major accomplishments” in 2011.
by Jude Viban in Yaounde