AFCIG Launches One-Cameroon  to Promote Culture of Tolerance and Peace

Group picture of some participants

Group picture of some participants

This was in the first of many workshops organized in Bamenda on April 4 and 5, 2015, bringing together 20 bloggers, journalists, Muslim youth leaders and members of some civil society organizations and minority and disadvantaged groups in Bamenda to brain storm and devise strategies for an online mass sensitization campaign to promote peace and religious, cultural and language tolerance  in Cameroon.

The project according to Ngasa Wise Nzikie executive Director of Action Foundation Common Initiative Group (AFICIG) is focus on how to use the social media to produce counter messages against hate groups and terrorist organizations that are making used of these same medium to propagate hate messages and violence while the rest watch helplessly. Similar workshops he said would be organized in the various regional headquarters of the country in the days ahead.

Ngasa Wise  presenting the objectives of the workshop

Samba Gerard on culture of Peace and tolerance

The participants used the workshop to devise short messages on themes like religious freedom, tolerance and oneness and cultural and language differences which they themselves would use various social media outlets like facebook, youtube, twitter,instagram, linkedin, google +, whatappers, viber and others to disseminate in an effort to build a culture of tolerance, peace, love and understanding as a way of countering hate  and violence messages spread on these same social network outlets by extremist groups. These messages would be spread using the hastag #OneCameroon.

Tamfu Gerald Samba, Director at AFCIG says the message of Peace in the #OneCameroon project is clearly intended to “counteract the ideology and impact of Boko Haram” in the country.  The whole idea here he added is to make it go viral on social media, the message of peace as against that of hate and violence.

Patu Bako Secretary General of the Muslim Students Association – Bamenda (MUSAB) described the workshop as timely and important in a climate of mutual suspicion, hate and violence, particularly against innocent Muslim. She spoke of a situation where a drunken military officer on guard near her office once shouted “hey Mbororo!!! Boko Haram!!! Boko Haram!!!” at her in the midst of many as she approached him. This was a potential source of conflict she said.

Patu Baku tells the press her ordeal

Patu Baku tells the press her ordeal

“I think today’s workshop has taught me a lot, particularly on how to build a country on tolerance and peace” she added.

Garba Mamadou, another participant drawn from the Muslim community said the workshop has taught him a lot and has reinforced his capacity on how to design and share short messages to promote tolerance and peace across various divides.

For Bih Veronica Ngum, program officer of the Coordinating Unit of Association of Persons with Disability Northwest Region, the workshop has empowered her a lot and she would have to restitute what she has learned to her group members whom she said are hyper sensitive and aggressive due to their lack of assertiveness, marking them less tolerance and prone to conflict with other members of the society.

Bih Veronica plans to restitute to her organization members what she learned

Bih Veronica plans to restitute to her organization members what she learned

The Project #OneCameroon is sponsored by UNAOC and run by AFCIG. To achieve its goal, AFCIG and its partners have set aside a package for the individuals or organizations that would attract the most likes, followers, retweets and circles on social media, the mass media and any other forms of communication with massages promoting peace, tolerance, love, acceptance, appreciation and the likes. AFCIG also intends to use some popular artists and the mass media to release musical singles on the same theme.

some participants from different backgrounds pose for a picture




some participants at the two day workshop

some participants at the two day workshop

Bamenda workshop would be followed by a similar one in Douala and Yaoundé in the days ahead.

By Abongwa Fozo


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