Cameroon:Paul Biya honours 65 artists for service to nation

At least 65 artists from the various sub cultural and artistic sectors have been honoured by the Head of State,…

At least 65 artists from the various sub cultural and artistic sectors have been honoured by the Head of State, Paul Biya for their resilience, dedication and role in projecting Cameroon through their works.

They were decorated on Friday, November 27 at the national Museum during the opening of the first edition of the Artistic and Cultural Resilience Day, presided over by Dr Joseph Dion Ngute, Prime Minister, Head of Government and personal representative of the Head of State.

Musicians, painters, artistes, producers,…etc were all smiles in a ceremony which portrayed their important role in nation building and projecting the country’s image to the rest of the world.

Decorating the artists, the Prime Minister, Head of Government reminded them of the role of arts and culture in consolidating nation building and living together.

“In Cameroon as well as across the globe, culture is a melting for dialogue and exchange. In fact, arts and culture as a transformation process stimulate development. It also participates in consolidating national conscience which is against, exclusion, marginalization and discrimination,” the Prime Minister said.

It is for this reason that the Head of State found their contributions worthy to be recognized, the Prime Minister told the artists, adding that it is equally a call for more action and service to the nation.

““These distinctions are a source of pride for you and for your respective families because they are acquires at the price of constant work…It is also a call for you to keep working hard to meet the expectations of the idols and to achieve other recognitions,” the Prime Minister challenged the recipients of the day.

By creating a Ministry dedicated to arts and culture, the Head of State wanted to materialize his vision for the sector and the place he accords to culture in the country’s drive towards emergence, Dr Joseph Dion Ngute said.

On his part, the Minister of Arts and Culture Pierre Ismael Bidoung Mkpatt said the Head of State’s recognition to the 65 artists is in line with the 2020-2030 National Development Strategy which seeks to valourise the nation’s cultural heritage. Through this act from the Head of State, culture which has most often been confined to the social aspect is now propelled as a pillar of economic and structural transformation given that it has its rightful place in the industry and services sector, the Minister of Arts said.

The day was also an opportunity to pay homage to fallen artiste Ntoumba Minka whose guitar was handed by his family to the Minister of Arts and Culture to be preserved at the National Museum.

Overwhelmed, the artists unanimously presented a motion of gratitude to the Head of State which was read out by Jean Pierre Essome.