Twenty-one (21) is the take home figure for the 5th edition of the National Days of Social Economy on Thursday the 28th of October 2021 at the Yaounde Town Hall. This figure represents the total number of recommendations formulated at the end of the three-day intense reflection and workshops geared towards harmonizing efforts to better the competitiveness of Social Economy Units and promote regional development in the light of the NDS-30 in Cameroon.
The closing ceremony, in the presence of government officials, members of the diplomatic corps, local authorities and social economy actors was rich in content. With attention drawn to the 21-point recommendations presented by the Director in charge of Social Economy at the MINPMEESA, Joseph AHANDA, some spear-headers of social economy in Cameroon were awarded certificates of recognition by MINPMEESA. Top on the list was, Pauline EYEBE EFFA, social economy militant as she describes herself, and spear-header of the creation of Social Economy Units (SEUs) in all local councils in Cameroon. She had undertaken to see this dynamic evolution in her home country Cameroon, after her travels and works round the globe. Expressing herself at the end of the ceremony, she could not hide her emotions as she stated: “this 5th edition actually took us to what is concrete; structural transformation of SEUs has gotten its roots in Cameroon. What I’ve lived in Brazil is what I am actually living in Cameroon and I feel pure happiness”.
Minister Achille BASSILEKIN III was moved to request applause in honour of all the participants, for a job well done; evident in the beautiful results and recommendations. Certainly, one good turn invites another and more efforts are to be put into the implementation of the recommendations arrived at the just-ended edition of JNES. If social economy units have gradually been structured within localities all over the country, it is no doubt, thanks to the combined efforts of the Ministry, social economy militants and the local councils.
As the Minister highlighted, the efforts are not to remain just at the local levels but be propelled to the national and regional levels. This can be seen echoed in the 12th recommendation: “ensure the revitalization of SEUs in all sectors: social action, education, health, culture, finance, agriculture, local commerce, solidarity tourism, accommodation, industry etc.” Interconnectivity in a digitalized world prompted point 20: “encourage the digitalization of SEUs activities” and the establishment of a social economy National Council as the 21st recommendation, what better way to keep all actors alert on how much work needs to be done, before the 6th edition comes around!