Don’t Live Like an Island on an Island: New Camess President to Cameroonian Students in EMU in an Exclusive Interview with Gundem Newspaper


Harold Assam Egoji is a final year student in Business and Economics Faculty. He was recently elected on the 6th of November, 2016 as the new CAMESS president (Cameroonian student society). In this interview, he shares his plans and intentions for Cameroonian students in EMU with Gundem’s Francisca Okitor.

Can you tell us your reason(s) why you chose to embark on this elective position as CAMESS president?

As young people we were told that ”if you don’t have the dream of becoming the president then you should have a rethink of your life “. My aim of becoming the CAMESS president goes far beyond that dream. It is more of re-building an association that is at its peak of collapsing, am not in the best position to do that alone but its definitely going to work out good. Furthermore I got lots of encouragements from my people even prior to this year, the president before the former president of last year encouraged me as well. i was motivated by the good wishes.

With an overwhelming electoral victory, what can you associate your success with?

The success of this election was because the people saw something in me. In addition, I contested last year for this same position but I lost. The overwhelming victory was due to the believe Cameroonian people had in me and because of the team i worked with. Aside the aforesaid on what I can associate my success with, I also want to make it pithy that at the beginning of this electoral race; there were only two candidates. One candidate was dropped out by the international office for some reasons and we had to vote based on the total number of Cameroonians. We have above one hundred and twenty and just a few of the total Cameroonians’ voted probably because the rest were discouraged due to the disqualification of the other candidate. The few that voted maybe all of them voted for me which led to the overwhelming results announced.

What are your plans for CAMESS and how do you plan to execute them?

I would not say my plans but our plans because am not working alone if there is anything I have to do I must contact my team first and we forward a general meeting. The association is still in her introduction stage; it has not gotten to the level of maturity unlike other association. So any policy or action which we are to take to make has to conform to the level at which our association is presently. Like I told you based on my studies and evaluation, we are still at the introduction stage first and foremost with my cabinet we would try to see how we can bring people together and get their ideas on how they want the association to do. Our primary aim now is the bringing of Cameroonian students together as much as possible because once we have the majority we can be able to generate more ideas. Aside the aforesaid, another major plan is to get some level of decentralized authority from the school because that’s the major problem we are facing now. No one wants to feel attached to the association because they cannot benefit anything from the association. let me give a very simplistic example; we have a very big issue on ground now and that is the renewal of our passports. If we cannot do a simple task like this how do we expect the people to have confidence in us, sometimes we call a meeting and the turn is really poor. So these are the things we want to do first before anything else.

Team work makes the dream most times; what do you make of your team?

I am perfectly satisfied. Firstly my SG is a masters student and a research assistant in the department of International relations; his competence is beyond expectations. Secondly my vice president is a final year student in Banking and finance, I can attest to you that based on their g.p.a and based on how well I have worked with them that i am very much satisfied. During the handover ceremony, we will complete the other executive positions that will work with us from time to time because we have other activities like sports, cultural e.t.c . Also in another vein, my team represents Cameroon, we all speak French and English very well  and with this, we would be to bring both the French speaking Cameroonians and the English speaking together.

How do you plan to take more share of the blame than you should and take less of the praise because like they say; that is one of the qualities of a good leader?

It is very normal to take blames and I have been through things in my life too. I will be able to absorb the blames so far;, anything that won’t kill you will only make you stronger. So far it has nothing to do with my life; the blames are OK. Concerning the applause, they wont come directly to me, if it comes to me fine. Mostly, the applause will go to the team.

What will you do differently from the past administration?

I will try as much as possible to work with people and listen to people because that is what makes good leadership. There is lack of legitimacy when I mean legitimacy I mean the explicit which is the fact that you have been voted and implicit which implies that the people wants you. I will be closer to the people

What is your message for Cameroonian students in EMU?

Honestly from the bottom of my heart, I want every Cameroonian to try as much as possible to give in their best to the association because this is all what we have here. If you want to live like an Island on an Island then there would be much more problems that you can imagine. If all the Cameroonians can come together even if it is to drink water there would be a kind of motivation that is exceptional. We come from the same origin that motivation would be there sometimes we have gatherings, sometimes barbecue etc. the moment you go back home you would feel like you are at home. I want to encourage many more Cameroonians to be able to increase attendance in meetings.

The vice president, Miss Larissa Kamga Migue and the SG, Achiri Emmanuel also acceded to Gundem newspaper that they intend to support the president in uniting Cameroonians in EMU by motivating the people for the growth of the CAMESS.

By Francisca Okitor