Good news from Cameroon

University scientists in Cameroon have had their pay cheques increased by over 40% over two years. I was told this by the vice-chancellor of the University of Buea, Vincent Titanji, during lunch today.

Amid the gloom of the tales coming out of African universities about how they are facing uncertainty as a result of the financial crisis, this comes as a ray of sunshine.

Apparently, the government of Cameroon has decided to spend part of the money it “received” as a result of two major debt write-offs on health, engineering and teacher education. How very wise!

Titanji’s university is also getting a whole new faculty for health sciences with two specialised laboratories.

The payrise has stabilised the university sector, says Titanji. People are happy in their jobs now, and the institutions work harmoniously.

It is too early to evaluate the impact of the programme. But it is reminder that there are many possible sources for funding for S&T if a government is serious about supporting it.

In other news, Mohammed Hassan, executive director of TWAS, has been away from the conference today. For a good reason, we are assured. He has supposedly been to see South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma who has been awarded TWAS presidential medal.

We hope he will take a photo

Linda Nordling, SciDev.Net

School Children in Cameroon

School Children in Cameroon. Photo credit: Flickr / emeryjl

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