Within the framework of promoting local development and good governance, the Special Council Support Fund for Mutual Assistance (FEICOM) in collaboration with partners has since 2012 through its national award initiative rewarded councils in the country which strive in improving the standards of living of their inhabitants through the implementation of projects. The Garoua II Council in the North Region was awarded overall first in the award ceremony that held at the Hilton hotel in Yaounde on August 23, 2019 and was presided at by the Minister of Decentralization and Local Development, Georges Elanga Obam in the presence of several cabinet ministers. The Council received FCFA 50 million following a project on the empowerment of women through a savings and credit financial scheme which they implemented for improving living conditions of its population.
Presiding at the ceremony, Minister Elanga Obam said the initiative celebrates excellence in local development by recognizing councils that have the most obvious impact and visibility on its population. The Minister noted that the initiative is an in depth realization of the decentralization process and rewards councils that make the best use of transferred resources.
The Director General of FEICOM, Philippe Camille Akoa, on his part said the award which is in its third edition respects certain criteria. He stated that the five different domains in which different projects can be presented include the mobilization of resources, good local governance, sustainable development, management of resources and the management of infrastructure. Going by him, the award is destined for those whose projects display innovation, durability, impact and involve wide participation.
Besides the three national prizes, regional prizes of FCFA 2 million are equally awarded to ten councils from the ten regions of the country. The association of councils in the Adamawa Region emerged national second and were awarded FCFA 20 million. The Dschang Council in the West Region were national third, receiving FCFA 10 million following a project on the management, treatment and valorisation of non-bio-digradable waste. The jury which scored the various councils was made up of national and international members with the Director General for Local Development Fund of Madagascar, Raharinjatavo Hanita being its president. The entire award initiative seeks to recognize councils that keep providing and ensuring basic social amenities and services are available to their people. The first edition was organized in 2012 with the Baganté Council in the West Region being first and the second edition in 2016 with the union of councils for Mbam & Inougou emerging first.