Introducing Peasant Economists, PEECAS, and its Dream: From Us, For Us and By Us

Critical question. Where will Cameroon be in 50 years time? What future are we preparing for our children, and the children of our children? Who shall build us schools and hospitals, build bridges over our rivers, electrify our towns and villages, tar our roads, and supply clean drinking water to our poor villages? So many questions, but very few answers. Unfortunately. We believe that Peasant Economists is the answer. In fact, we believe every one of us is the answer to these questions. We, the Peasant Economists, believe the future of our country lies in our hands. The marginalisation, isolation and neglect we face in our own country today is not, must not and can not be accepted as an explanation of and a justification of indifference. The hard times should instead be seen as a challenge and a call to immediate action. The solutions to our numerous problems can only come from us, for us, by us. Politicians, claiming to have answers have led us down, again and again. They have lied again and again; cheated us, stolen from us, broken many promises while we stand by, arms folded, and watch our degenerate. Cameroon has gone from failing to a near-failed state. So much so that many citizens given up hope and fled, never to return. In the midst of all the misery we face today a lot of talking is going on, some are talking of a revolution, some talk of war, while others talk of independence. We, the peasant economists, hate talking. We are nation builders. We believe that the time has come for concrete action on issues concerning the future and development of our country. On 20th January 1961 John Kennedy, during his inauguration as president of the United States challenged his fellow citizens when he said: ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.’ President Barack Obama on the day of his inauguration as president reminded Americans, that it will take everyone’s involvement to solve the huge financial crisis facing his country. That means even in the richest countries on earth, the governments cannot do it alone. The happenings of recent times remind us clearly that the will of man is the strongest force on earth. We have seen a black man tell Americans ‘Yes we can’ and become the president of that county. We have seen militia groups, either defeat or survive the onslaught of one of the most modern and ruthless armies in the world. The Peasant Economists do believe its time for us, to believe in ourselves, organise ourselves, put our hands together to build and to develop our country. Our government has not, cannot and will not do it for us. After crying, grumbling and complaining and blaming each other for many years, the time for us to come together is now, not tomorrow. The great Chinese leader Mao Tse Tsung once said, ‘A journey of a thousand miles begins with a step.’ JFK also said ‘Let us resolve to be masters, not the victims, of our history, controlling our own destiny without giving way to blind suspicions and emotions.” The question we must ask ourselves is, ‘Have we taken that first step yet?’ We need schools, we need roads, we need hospitals; playgrounds we need electricity, we need water, we need intellectuals and experts, we need food, we need jobs, we need industries, we need banks and we need a beautiful country. We, the peasant economists, strongly believe that from us, by us and for us, together we could make our country a better place. All this will not be finished in one day, nor will it be finished in the first one year, maybe not in our generation, nor even perhaps in our lifetime. But let us begin.

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