In April 2007, Kumbo Subdivision, an administrative district covering 300,000 people, was divided in two. The new subdivision, Nkum, with some of the region’s coldest temperatures, encompassed the least developed villages, including Kishong, site of the Himalayan Institute’s School of Energy Farming.
Since the split, the new Nkum Council has had its hands full. It has been the target of an aggressive decentralization campaign by the Cameroonian national government. Many of the public health, sanitation, and development responsibilities formerly covered at the national level have been shifted down to the council, without the additional resources needed to complete them.
The Himalayan Institute Cameroon (HIC) team visited the council on Tuesday to begin a formal partnership and to discuss the future of energy farming.
As an extension of good will, Nkum Mayor Alhaji Kifon offered HIC free access to the water main in Kishong Village. The water will go towards irrigating young oilseed crops during the dry season. He further pledged his support for the Energy Farming program, saying, “Considering the importance of energy farming for the preservation of the world’s environment, I believe that all hands put on deck will make Nkum Subdivision one of the most strongly referenced subdivisions in the world.”
HIC presented 46 Help Africa Move Forward T-shirts to the council. These shirts will be given as prizes in the Nkum Municipal Cup, a regional soccer tournament with finals scheduled for November 30.
Afterwards, Ngoran Lawrence, Parliamentarian (representative in the national legislature) of Nkum, promised that he would do everything he could to pave the way for additional HIC empowerment projects in Nkum. He said, “My residence is in Kumbo and so I have a little knowledge of these programs, for instance the Total Health Center. It may be that there are four hundred NGOs in Bui Division, but that is only if you count them by certificate. If you count by deeds, then I consider the Himalayan Institute to be one in ten to come here.”