VKII Press Release on the Coronavirus Crisis
Dear members and supporters,
Considering the global situation related to COVID-19,the VKII Executive Board VKII (Association of Cameroonian Engineers and Computer Scientists mainly based in Germany), invites all its members in Germany (Europe) as well as in Cameroon (Africa) to be careful and to strictly observe the measures of social distancing, containment and hygiene decided and presented by the governmental authorities of each country, especially those coming from the Ministries of Health and Health Authorities (whether in Germany, in Cameroon or anywhere else in the world). Because of this exceptional and unprecedented situation, association’s executive board, after synchronization with the various VKII cells, has taken the resolutions to suspend all activities with physical contact planned for this year, starting from March 2020 (the month in whichthe pandemic exploded worldwide).
The following measures have been taken since then:
INTERNAL MEASURE WITHIN THE ASSOCIATION
Acceleration of the digitalization of our activities in Germany
Indeed, the VKII regional offices are now called upon to organize virtual meetings with their members, both regarding the organization of seminars (webinars) and the organization of regional general assemblies (virtual GAs). For this purpose, a catalog, with a list of software, has been compiled by the association’s IT specialists and made available to the different VKII regional offices to enable them to implement the said activities. The rules of procedure and statutes for the different sub-regional VKII associations will be adapted for this new type of activity and the new situation. The Executive Board has prepared a standard document for the different regional offices to assist them in amending their statutes and rules of procedure.
Creation of the entrepreneurs and experts groups VKII- “Energy Solutions” " and VKII- “IT Solutions” .
In response to this crisis situation, VKII entrepreneurs in the f energy and IT sectors decided to meet under the respective brands VKII- “Energy Solutions” and VKII- “IT Solutions”.
As the names of these groups describe it, the so-called VKII entrepreneurs aim to work together to offer their services, in order to win common markets and to bring together concrete solutions to technical and engineering problems in Africa in general and Cameroon in particular.
We invite all our members and sympathizers’ entrepreneurs in the aforementioned fields to join this new dynamic of the VKII.
This platform is the first product of the groups VKII-“Energy Solutions” and VKII-“IT Solutions”". Through this platform we wish to raise funds within the framework of the COVID-19 crisis, for humanitarian actions in Cameroon.. The collected funds will be used to finance pre-selected projects proposed by VKII members and entrepreneurs, to help the population, the private sector and the administrative authorities, to best manage the health crisis in Cameroon.
The action is sponsored by H.E. Jean Marc Mpay (Ambassador of Cameroon in Germany), Mr. Protais Ayangma Amang (President of the Employers' Group of Cameroonian Enterprises, ECAM) and Mr. Steve Njanda Kommogne (President of the Association of Cameroonian Engineers and Computer Scientists, VKII e.V.).
Launch of the webcast and the magazine “Diaspo Science & Tech”
The situation of social distancing in recent months has galvanized us to launch a webcast and a magazine. The two concepts have the same name, which is “Diaspo Science & Tech”, and are intended to be respectively the voice and the tribune of literary expression of the scientific diaspora.
The web show is created and jointly produced since March 2020 by VKII-Web TV (Web TV, currently being launched by the Association of Cameroonian Engineers and Computer Scientists in Germany) and Billy-Prod TV, aVKII partner. The program is also intended to be a means of popularizing science throughout Africa in general and more specifically in Cameroon. Excerpts and recordings of the program are available on the Facebook pages VKII and Billy-Prod TV but also on our YouTube channel VKII (We invite you to subscribe massively on the channel).
The Diaspo Science & Tech magazine wasalso launched during the period of social distancing and is intended to be the leading contribution (on paper) of the African Diaspora in the sharing of scientific and technological knowledge in Cameroon in particular and throughout Africa in general. This scientific journal aspires to be the platform of expression by excellence of African experts from the Diaspora in the technical and technological fields but also in that of scientific research, because the experts have the opportunities to expose their opinions on important issues in these fields and also explain their potential impact on the objectives of sustainable development.
We are open to all kinds of partnership, sponsorship and financial support, which will help us to continue carry out our above-mentioned projects , which are so important and hopeful for our community. Any person from the African Diaspora (VKII member/sympathizer or not) interested in participating in our broadcast and/or writing an article for the magazine is kindly invited to contact us through the contact details below.
EXTERNAL MEASURE OF THE ASSOCIATION
General contribution of the diaspora and appeal to the Cameroonian government
In the context of the Great National Dialogue in 2019, to which we were invited to take part, we invited, among others, the Cameroonian government to do everything possible to achieve Sustainable Development Goalnumber 17. This goal is about “Revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development” and can only be realized with strong global partnerships and cooperation, in which parterships at the global, regional, national and local levels are required. “We put a special emphasis on partnerships with the different diasporas, inviting the Cameroonian government to cooperate with all its children around the world and to involve them more in the process of building and developing Cameroon. Concerning the fight against this pandemic in Cameroon, we once again highlight this objective and invite the Cameroonian government to work with its diasporas, for the management of the current crisis and eventually the next ones.
Our association has thus taken the resolution with its partners (including E.CAM - Enterprise of Cameroon), to initiate the action “Diaspora Against COVID-19”, which aims at fundraising to finance projects to fight against the pandemic in Cameroon (see previous chapter about the topic and also the dedicated website https://covid.vkii.org ), which we wish to highlight. Several (innovative) projects for Cameroon are planned , including the support of the VKII to the special prize COVID-19, as part of the ECAM-SGS Grand Prize for Innovation, for which the final will be held on September 17, 2020.
We would also like to highlight the work of the Association of Cameroonian Physicians and Pharmacists in Germany (https://www.camfomedics.org/de), a long-time partner of the VKII, which proposes many actions in the fight against the current pandemic.
GIZ's WIDU.Africa project
In times of crisis, we recommend our members and supporters to take an interest in the WIDU.africa platform, which is an initiative of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), implemented by the "Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit" (GIZ).
The WIDU project was developed in intensive cooperation with the African diaspora in Germany, in particular with the VKII (since the end of 2017), in order to offer a user-friendly and effective platform for the promotion of entrepreneurs and start-ups in Africa. Members of our diaspora in Germany can thus sponsor projects of their relatives (entrepreneurs in the formal and informal sector) in Cameroon. There is also a special "Corona" component or grant, which consists of providing funding of up to 2500€ to local entrepreneurs with projects to fight the current pandemic in Cameroon.
Indeed, since August 2019, an advisory board composed of stakeholders and independent experts has been created to accompany the project. Participants are representatives of the Ghanaian and Cameroonian diaspora, digital businesses (such as FinTechs), civil society, science and politics. The VKII e.V., through its president, Mr. Steve Njanda Kommogne, is a member of the advisory board of this project.
For more information: https://widu.africa/fr
VKII Communication Team