The special plane that transported the President of the Republic, His Excellency Paul BIYA and wife, Mrs Chantal BIYA touched the tarmac of the Yaounde Nsimalen International Airport at 6:51 p.m. on Friday 15 November 2019.
The Presidential Couple were warmly welcomed after they descended the plane by the following personalities: the Speaker of the National Assembly – Right Honourable Cavaye Yeguie Djibril; the Prime Minister, Head of Government – Chief Dr Joseph Dion Ngute; the First Vice President of the Senate – Senator Aboubakary Abdoulaye; the French Ambassador to Cameroon – H.E. Christophe Guilhou; and the Minister of State, Secretary General of the Presidency of the Republic – Mr Ferdinand Ngoh Ngoh.
Also present at the airport were top administrative officials of the Centre Region, spouses of the close collaborators of the President of the Republic and a cheering crowd from the Mefou and Afamba Division; comprising three groups of lively traditional dancers.
This was followed by six audiences granted by the Head of State to the personalities who welcomed him and his wife at the foot of the plane plus the Secretary General of the Cameroon People’s Movement (CPDM) – Mr Jean Nkuete.
The Head of State and the First Lady were greeted by large crowds of CPDM members and sympathisers, and some inhabitants of Yaounde who stood on both sides of the itinerary of the presidential motorcade.
H.E. Paul BIYA’s participation at the second Paris Peace Forum was marked by his presence at a dinner hosted by President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee Palace on 11 November, and his constructive contribution during a panel discussion the next day, which focused on the “Rise of the south: towards a more balanced global governance system”.
The Head of State shared the floor with high-profile panellists such as Louise Mushikiwabo, Secretary General of the International Organisation of la Francophonie, Hor Nambong, the Vice Prime Minister of Cambodia, Mohan Kumar, President of Research and Information System for Developing Countries and Hossan Zaki, Assistant Secretary General of the Arab League. It was moderated by Mohammed “Mo” Ibrahim, a Sudanese-British billionaire businessman and founder of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation.
H.E. Paul BIYA seized the opportunity to call for the restructuring of the UN Security Council and the Bretton Woods Institutions. He equally announced that the Government of Cameroon is on the verge of establishing a special status to the North-West and South-West Regions – an important fallout of the Major National Dialogue, which was aimed at seeking solutions to the socio-political situation in both regions.
On her part, First Lady Chantal BIYA was part of a luncheon organised by Mrs Brigitte Macron on the sidelines of the Paris Peace Forum. They shared ideas on the “Education of the Young Girl” – a topic that is dear to Mrs BIYA who is UNESCO’s Goodwill Ambassador for Education and Social Inclusion. Her actions in this domain have been championed through institutions like the Chantal BIYA Foundation and the Circle of Friends of Cameroon (CERAC).