By Doh Bertrand Nua Among the nine candidates vying for the post of President of the Republic in the upcoming Presidential elections in Cameroon on October 7, is one of Cameroon’s finest legal luminary, Barrister Akere Tabeng Muna. The 66-year-old lawyer, former vice president of the anti-corruption group Transparency International, says he is the best candidate to fight the deep-rooted corruption that has hindered Cameroon’s development, despite rich natural and human resources. The erstwhile Chairman of Transparency International, TI, ex-Cameroon Bar Association and an international human rights lawyer, focuses his ideas on creating a Cameroon which he describes as “The New Republic.” He believes Cameroon is now at the crossroads of its history and should be moved towards a New Republic. This to him is a Republic that finds strength in diversity, founded on good governance, built on the rule of law, inspired by the will of the people, defined unity, a Republic that cultivates zero-tolerance for corruption, tribalism, nepotism and favouritism, that reaffirms justice for all, healthcare for all and education for all.
Akere’s plan for Cameroon Born in August 1952, 66-years-old Akere Tabeng Muna, Leader of the Now Movement, invested by the Popular Front for Development, PFD, party to run for the 2018 Presidential elections, through inspiration from the African Peer Review Mechanism, a mechanism for monitoring good governance for AU Union member states, has identified four broad areas where he believes reforms will be made if elected president.
These include; Democracy, political governance and justice with focus on (a two term presidential mandate of five years each, institution of a system where all members of the senate and parliament are elected and reduction of administration’s influence on the media), governance and economic development (reduction of number and types of taxes, subventions to Cameroonian companies abroad), social development and inclusion plan (introduction of a system of parity in government, salary increase for teachers, creation of schools and hospitals within each mile in communities) and Cameroon in the world (the institution of dual nationality, representation of the diaspora in the National Assembly).
The above reforms to Akere Muna will uphold values, standards and practices of political/economic governance that will guarantee political stability while sub regional and continental growth and integration will be accelerated.
Born in Ngyen-Mbo village in the North-West region of Cameroon, Akere Muna completed his primary and secondary education in the country before heading to the School of International Service (SIS) at American University in Washington, D.C., obtaining a Bachelor of Science degree in International Relations in 1975. He then moved to England, where he joined the Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn. He was called to the Bar in England in 1978. That same year, he returned to Cameroon to practice law. Upon returning home, Akere joined the legal practice of his brother, Bernard Muna. In 1984, the legal practice was converted into a law firm called Muna, Muna & Associates, one of the oldest law firms in Cameroon, with experience in the bi-jural (common law and civil law) legal system of Cameroon. Although Akere Muna has continued to work as a lawyer at the firm, he has held several positions in civil society within Cameroon and internationally.
Positions Barrister Akere Tabeng Muna is of the Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn. He was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 1978 and admitted to the Cameroon Bar in 1982. As a Practising Lawyer, he served two terms as the President (Batonnier) of the Cameroon Bar Association; and subsequently served for a decade as President of Pan-African Lawyers Union (3 Terms). Akere Muna was the first-ever elected President of the Economic, Social and Cultural Council of the African Union and has been a member of the High Level Panel on the Audit of the African Union. A distinguished member of Eminent Persons’ Panel of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM); He later on became the Chairperson. Akere’s experience with international financial institutions includes being a consultant for World Bank and also the African Development Bank. He was a Member of the International Monetary Fund Consultative Group for Sub-Saharan Africa.
He is a civil society activist and fierce defender of civil and political rights. Akere is widely recognized for his global leadership as a champion of good governance and anti-corruption. He is currently: Chairperson of International Anti-corruption Conference, Sanctions Commissioner of the African Development Bank, Member of African Union’s High Level Panel on Illicit Financial Flows from Africa, Chairperson of the Vetting Panel of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), Managing Partner of Muna and Associates.