MAY 14 2016 MEETING MINUTES
UPBACDA GENERAL ASSEMBLY MEETING
The meeting started with a presentation of a proposed agenda by the Secretary General, which was later moved by Lawyer Nkwanchong and Dr Solomon Agbor.
Opening Prayers: The opening prayer from Mr Eyong Jose who thanked the Lord for our lives, while calling on Him to continue to guide and provide for us. He prayed for the Lords leadership as we make we make personal and collective decisions.
Welcome Remarks: The president started by thanking members for coming despite the bad weather. He went further to encourage members to actively and sincerely contribute during deliberations because the best recipe for our growth is collective and respectful participation. He also used the opportunity to remind members that Mrs Akwo was sick and members were encouraged to contact her during this difficult time.
After the welcome remarks by the president, the Secretary General took the floor to read the minutes of April 2016. Upon completion, the minutes were adopted by Mami Martha and Mr Samuel Orock.
The first issue on this part of the agenda was raised by Dr Solomon Agbor who was concerned by the fact that the changes regarding bereavement should take effect come next rather that in the middle of the year so that members can prepare their minds and budget towards such changes. He also used this opportunity to repudiate the notion that COMBASS has been endorsed by the president and that someone is trying to push it down the throats of everyone. He believes this is a community initiative that requires voluntary membership hence, members are not coerce to join.
The Secretary General responded to Dr Solomon’s remark by clarifying that the minutes does not suggest that members have been forced to join COMBASS, however the proponent of the COMBASS remark was advocating for the creation of an internal system to protect members on such situations rather than relying solely on external schemes like COMBASS.
Lawyer Nkwanchong on his part believes that the changes in the current bereavement package should take effect immediately, while encouraging members to be part of both plans because he believes more is always better than less.
At this point, the Financial Secretary stepped to discuss the financial benefits of the current changes by informing the association that it is cost effective considering the fact that it is just $50 increase where as if we were to lost a member we will end up spending more.
Prince Ashunkem on his part reminded the association that it voted that the changes take effect immediately and Mr Maurice Tabe concurred with this position.
The last word on this issue came from the President reminded members that the reason behind these changes is to alleviate the burden of $100 and that such contributions are now part of the Trouble Fund. He went further to remind his members that this contribution has been partitioned into three quarters hence members are expected to complete the full amount by October.
The next issue on this part of the Agenda was raised by Mr Bechem Ebini who wanted to know if the president had reimbursed My Manga of the amount that was decided during that last meeting.
The President responded that he had informed Mr Manga of our decision and he was full of delight and thank the association for the gesture. However the is still in the process of sending the money.
Dr Agbor was impressed and commends the association for arriving at such a decision. As the coordinator of our last project, he had the opportunity to work with Mr Manga and he attested the fact that Mr Manga invested so much time and resources for this association without any compensation of sort.
This part of the agenda was divided into general matter, project and BBQ.
In the absence of any general matter, the President proceeded with a statement about the need for a project. He made clear that it’s no secret that from the dawn of this administration we wanted a project, however because of the lack of appetite and enthusiasm at the time, coupled with the fatigue from the previous project, such ambitions were halted. He proceeded by letting members know that this time we have to give a helping hand to our brothers and sisters back home as they have come asking for our support. The president informed the association of his conversation with the Mayor of Tinto Rural Council, whose jurisdiction encompasses the entire Upper Banyang Sub-division. During their conversation, the president informed the Mayor of our previous discussions relating the improvement in the medical sector. On his part, the Mayor suggested an emergency unit and cited the increase in highway accident as his primary reason. The Mayor went further to note that these accidents will only double as the roads which are currently under construction get better.
At this point the Secretary General read the Mayor Letter to the general assembly.
In reacting to the letter, Prince Ashunkem said from the letter it sounds as if the president made such a proposal to the Mayor and not the contrary. He went further to say that we shouldn’t focus solely on Tinto as there are other medical facilities in the Sub-division that can harbor an emergency unit.
The president responded that he did not present a specific project to the Mayor but rather made mention of our previous desire to improve the medical center in Tinto. Hence the proposal of an emergency unit was that of the Mayor and his counselors.
On his part, Dr Agbor believes that the politicians have made the Tinto the headquarters of our sub-division as result he opines that such a project can start in Tinto and from there satellite office can be created in other medical centers in the sub-division.
On his part, Dr Tabetah speaking from a medical Dr Standpoint holds the opinion that Tinto being the nucleus and the political capital stands as the best avenue for such a project. Secondly Tinto stands in pole position to harbor an emergency unit viz-a-viz other medical centers in the sub-division because it is the only medical center with a resident Doctor and status of hospital.
Mr Ashunkem wanted to know if this is the only project that has been earmarked by Mayor and this administration.
The president responded that, yes this is what the Mayor and councilors want and on the part of the administration, we would have preferred to reconstruct the hospital.
Chief mondi suggested we contact the Mayor and advise him to solicit support from other Upper Banyang groups at home and abroad so that we call share the responsibility. In response to this, Dr Agbor said we left our mark in the sub-division after the construction of the laboratory in Tinto. As a result all the leaders look up to us in matters like this.
Mr Maurice Tabe believes members need some time think off the importance and the feasibility of such project. On his part Mr Eyong Jose believe it is time for the association to decide if we want to follow through with the project or not.
The president concluded on this issue by asking members to use the next four weeks to think about the project so we can make conclusions in the near future.
The President reminded members that idea of a summer BBQ has become a tradition and this year will not be an exception, however this year will be different because we won’t be hosting at our traditional location was which was Pa Akwo’s Beltsville Residence. Because of the changes in the venue of the hosting location, the association is calling on members to think of suitable locations and a decision will be made in June.
-Mr Eyong Jose announced the death of his uncle and prominent Cameroonian statesman and diplomat Pa Kima Tabong.
- The president informed the association of the death of Mrs Ayompe’s sister.
As this point the meeting deliberations ended and members we asked to enjoy the good and drink responsibly. This was followed by Dance Dance Dance.
Next meeting scheduled for June 11th, 2015 Location: 6409 Grendel Pl Bowie, MD 20720
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