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Cameroon Government

    Country name:
    conventional long form: Republic of Cameroon
    conventional short form: Cameroon
    former: French Cameroon

    Data code: CM

    Government type: unitary republic; multiparty presidential regime (opposition parties legalized in 1990)

    Capital: Yaounde

    Administrative divisions: 10 provinces; Adamaoua, Centre, Est, Extreme-Nord, Littoral, Nord, Nord-Ouest, Ouest, Sud, Sud-Ouest

    Independence: 1 January 1960 (from UN trusteeship under French administration)

    National holiday: National Day, 20 May (1972)

    Constitution: 20 May 1972

    Legal system: based on French civil law system, with common law influence; does not accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

    Suffrage: 21 years of age; universal

    Executive branch:
    chief of state: President Paul BIYA (since 6 November 1982)
    head of government: Prime Minister Peter Mafany MUSONGE (since 19 September 1996)
    cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president
    elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term; election last held 12 October 1997 (next to be held NA October 2004); prime minister appointed by the president
    election results: President Paul BIYA reelected; percent of vote—Paul BIYA 93%; note—supporters of the opposition candidates boycotted the elections, making a comparison of vote shares relatively meaningless

    Legislative branch: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (180 seats; members are elected by direct popular vote to serve five-year terms; note—the president can either lengthen or shorten the term of the legislature)
    elections: last held 11 May 1997 (next to be held NA 2002)
    election results: percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party—CDPM 109, SDF 43, UNDP 13, UDC 5, UPC-K 1, MDR 1, MLJC 1; note—7 contested seats will be filled in an election at a time to be set by the Supreme Court
    note: the constitution calls for an upper chamber for the legislature, to be called Senate, which the government proposed to establish in 1998

    Judicial branch: Supreme Court, judges are appointed by the president

    Political parties and leaders: Cameroon People's Democratic Movement or CPDM (government-controlled and the only party until legalization of opposition parties in 1990) [Paul BIYA, president]
    major opposition parties: Cameroonian Democratic Union or UDC [Adamou NDAM NJOYA]; Movement for the Defense of the Republic or MDR [Dakole DAISSALA]; Movement for the Youth of Cameroon or MLJC [Marcel YANDO]; National Union for Democracy and Progress or UNDP [Maigari BELLO BOUBA, chairman]; Social Democratic Front or SDF [John FRU NDI]; Union of Cameroonian Populations or UPC [Augustin Frederick KODOG]; Union of Cameroonian Democratic Forces or UFOC [Victorin Hameni BIELEU]

    Political pressure groups and leaders: Alliance for Change or FAC; Cameroon Anglophone Movement or CAM [Vishe FAI, secretary general]

    International organization participation: ACCT, ACP, AfDB, BDEAC, C, CCC, CEEAC, ECA, FAO, FZ, G-19, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ITU, NAM, OAU, OIC, OPCW, PCA, UDEAC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNITAR, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

    Diplomatic representation in the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador Jerome MENDOUGA
    chancery: 2349 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
    telephone: [1] (202) 265-8790
    FAX: [1] (202) 387-3826

    Diplomatic representation from the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador John M. YATES
    embassy: Rue Nachtigal, Yaounde
    mailing address: B. P. 817, Yaounde; pouch: American Embassy, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2520
    telephone: [237] 23-45-52
    FAX: [237] 23-07-53

    Flag description: three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), red, and yellow with a yellow five-pointed star centered in the red band; uses the popular pan-African colors of Ethiopia

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)