Rockefeller: “a country only develops with research”

In a country such as Cameroon, which abounds in an incalculable number of high-flying intellectuals, it is a little alarming to note the lack of interest and infatuation that is brought to the attention of the researcher, to his development, his notoriety and especially to the fundamental importance that he should represent on the technological chessboard of the country. It is so true that a country develops only through research. Let us follow the example of Rwanda.

When we know that countries such as the United States, Russia, Germany and recently China today are engaged in a race against time in terms of knowledge and technology, through massive investments in research, it is really disgusting to know that several countries, in our case, Cameroon, limit themselves to being consumers of the products derived from this research.

As a young researcher in Artificial Intelligence and Data Science affiliated to the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences (AIMS in Limbe), I think that holding an International Fair For Young African Researcher of this calibre would be a great initiative. For there is a need to popularize the fields of research that could enable Africa to position itself in the race for knowledge, such as agriculture, renewable energies, health, digital technology, history and mathematics.

With potentials both in natural resources (oil, mines, metals, solar) and human resources (the youngest continent according to UN 2018 figures), a country like Cameroon could loudly proclaim its economic independence, if the means are put at stake, to equip our institutes with adequate equipment and train the workforce that goes with it.

Cameroon a pool of talent poorly exploited

The Cameroonian education system, although described as flawed by some, still inspires respect in other parts of the world. Especially when it comes to research. There is only the rather high number of Cameroonian researchers, doctors, professors, lecturers in permanent positions in the research centres of several universities around the world. This is the case, for example, of the Universities of Pretoria, Cape Town (South Africa), Technical University of Berlin, University of Kassel (Germany), University of Paris Orléans (France) .

There is therefore a great need to sound the alarm in order to repatriate not only the brains but also to put in place the means for a transfer of skills from the West to Africa. Organizing an international fair of researchers of such a scale, as is the case of IFYAR from 1 to 5 December 2020 in Yaoundé, will help to attract the attention of politicians and investors. In this way, significant resources could be injected into it for the development of Africa by African researchers and for Africans.

ROCKEFELLER, Data Scientist

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