The spirit of living together
The Spirit of Living Together: A Look at the Orange Pulse Masters at the 2019 University Games in Dschang
Under the umbrella of Orange Pulse, students from the 8 state Universities in Cameroon were convened at the Campus of the University of Dschang to witness another edition of the University Games. This short piece will examine the challenges faced by Pulse Masters, the Measures taken to address such challenges and an overall assessment of all what took place at the Games of 2019.
To harvest a rose, you must do it so carefully because it does not come alone; thorns accompany roses. Nothing good comes easy. Bringing people together to achieve a common purpose has never been an easy task. This is because we all have diverse ways of reasoning. In a nation where so many ethnic groups and tribes form this great triangle called Cameroon, living together will be always be a challenge but it is the collective will of the people that make it a reality.
It is no secret that Cameroon is undergoing one of the most trying moments in its history since the decolonization. The bringing together of people who predominantly speak English and those who predominantly speak French has proven to be an uphill task for the state of Cameroon.
Although under the Pulse Program with Orange Cameroon, our living together was put to serious test. I say this because all of Cameroon assembled into one place and thus had to cooperate. The students coming from different state Universities were in some way a representation of all of Cameroon since they came from all the regions of the country. The socio-political events plaguing the North-West and South-West Regions could not go unnoticed with the Students of the Universities of Buea and Bamenda. Without actually noticing, students from different universities were mostly talking only among themselves. Maybe language and familiarity played the key factor. Similarly, UB students preferred to interact with themselves and if they decided to go out of that circle, they would readily interact with those from UBa.
It was evident that someone was not feeling very comfortable somewhere. The language problem acted as a major gap between the Pulse Masters. Consequently, the other felt someone was making an attempt to override or dominate them. It was a feeling that resonated with most Pulse Masters from Buea and Bamenda whom spoke just English.
Understanding that for the sake of efficiency and effectiveness, we were supposed to work together and achieve the organizational objective. Over the days, attempts were made by French speaking students to say some words in English and likewise English speaking students made enormous attempts to say some words in French.
Language proved to be a serious problem for Pulse Masters from UB and UBa. Surprising on the field to meet students and register them into Pulse Community proved not to be so difficult. In Dschang, students are receptive to English and willing to learn the both languages. From observations, “of every six (6) students met, two (2) are able to speak both languages, two (2) understand English but are not so fluent in speaking, 1 (one) does not understand English at all but is willing to learn, the other 1 (one) does not understand English and shows no desire to learn or make an effort to learn”.
Over the next days, we began mixing ourselves together and the learning process was great. Most of the students from UB and UBa testified that if they stayed in Dschang for just three months and the level of interaction they had, knowledge of both languages will be a reality.
A take home message from our stay in Dschang is that is possible to work together and even effectively with those whom you may speak different languages and those whose ideas are seemingly different from yours, it is possible to disagree with people in a respectful way, team work is better than working individually or as an island. Since it was the Ramadan period and we had Muslim practicing students amongst us, we learnt that is possible to work with people while respecting their religious ideals and believes. Working with people of diverse opinions is an asset and not a disadvantage.
Observations further showed that there is growing desire among the younger generation Francophone Cameroonians to learn and know English. Knowledge of both languages is an asset and all should take pride in their ability to speak the both official languages. Anglophones on their part must cultivate in themselves the culture to learn and work with the French language.
Upcoming University Events
The Visit of the Prime Minister Dr. Joseph Dion Ngute to the University of Buea
The prime Minister, head of government is set to visit the University of Buea on the 15th of May 2019 as part of his peace tour in the North-West and South-West Regions. The students and staff of the University have been affected as result of the going conflict in the regions. The prime minister came to preach the message of peace as he had done in Bamenda. He met the Vice Chancellor, Prof Horace Ngomo Manga and the Pro Chancellor Prof Ako Edward Oben. The meeting was to start at 2pm but it delayed till about 5 pm. This meeting brought together students and the University administration. Immediately the PM arrived Amphi 750 were the meeting was to hold, everyone stood up for the singing of the National Anthem by the UB Choir. Immediately, after, the PM made a speech in which he began by apologizing for coming late and urging the students to work hard announcing that there will be a special recruitment of youths from the South-West Region. He also cautioned against the use of violence and pleaded for returning to peace in the Region.
Pulse Bundle/Package for the Moment
Actually most users of Orange in Buea are not aware of the package they are using. Most say they use Orange mostly for browsing and text messages but could not really tell for sure the bundle they were using for sure. There is need for students to fully get immersed in the usage of Orange in UB to have full knowledge about its bundles or packages. But they remark that Orange is relatively cheaper to browse and faster than the others.
Latest Gist in Town
Buea, being an iconic town never ceases to amaze and have stories to write home about. The headlines parading social media for the past weeks has been the visit of the PM, the various activities he carried out in the Buea municipality as regards to peace.
Shifting from political gist, Buea has seen the rise of “slay queens” (girls who pretend to be from rich homes and use their bodies to achieve all they want). Guys have become smarter as their money does not fall on the ground anyhow because times are so difficult. It is rare to see guys in Buea in Molyko spending lavishly on ladies. Some say they have become smarter and don’t want any franc of theirs to fall to the ground.