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French Cameroon became independent in 1960 as the Republic of Cameroon. The following year the southern portion of neighboring British Cameroon voted to merge with the new country to form the Federal Republic of Cameroon. In 1972, a new constitution replaced the federation with a unitary state, the United Republic of Cameroon. The country has generally enjoyed stability, which has permitted the development of agriculture, roads, and railways, as well as a petroleum industry. Despite slow movement toward democratic reform, political power remains firmly in the hands of President Paul BIYA.


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Government

Country name
Conventional long form Republic of Cameroon
Conventional short form Cameroon
Local long form
Republique du Cameroun/Republic of Cameroon
Local short form Cameroun/Cameroon
Former
French Cameroon, British Cameroon, Federal Republic of Cameroon, United Republic of Cameroon

Government type
Republic; multiparty presidential regime

Capital
Name Yaounde
Geographic coordinates 3 52 N, 11 31 E
Time difference
UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions
10 regions (regions, singular - region); Adamaoua, Centre, Est, Extreme-Nord, Littoral, Nord, North-West (Nord-Ouest), Ouest, Sud, South-West (Sud-Ouest)

Independence
1 January 1960 (from French-administered UN trusteeship)

National holiday
Republic Day (National Day), 20 May (1972)

Constitution
Approved by referendum 20 May 1972; adopted 2 June 1972; revised January 1996; amended April 2008

Legal system
Mixed legal system of English common law, French civil law, and customary law

International law organization participation
Accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; non-party state to the ICCt

Suffrage
20 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state
President Paul BIYA (since 6 November 1982)
Head of government
Prime Minister Philemon YANG (since 30 June 2009)
Cabinet
Cabinet appointed by the president from proposals submitted by the prime minister
Elections
President elected by popular vote for a seven-year term (with no term limits per 2008 constitutional amendment); election last held on 9 October 2011 (next to be held in October 2018); prime minister appointed by the president
Election results
President Paul BIYA reelected; percent of vote - Paul BIYA 78.0%, John FRU NDI 10.7%, Garga Haman ADJI 3.2%, Adamou Ndam NJOYA 1.7%, Paul Abine AYAH 1.3%, other 5.1%

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 on 22 July 2007 (next to be held in February 2013)
Election results
Percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CPDM 140, SDF 14, UDC 4, UNDP 4, MP 1, vacant 17
Note
The constitution calls for an upper chamber for the legislature, to be called a Senate, but it has yet to be established

Judicial branch
Supreme Court (judges are appointed by the president); High Court of Justice (consists of nine judges and six substitute judges; elected by the National Assembly)

Political parties and leaders
Cameroon People's Democratic Movement or CPDM [Paul BIYA]; Cameroonian Democratic Union or UDC [Adamou Ndam NJOYA]; Movement for the Defense of the Republic or MDR [Dakole DAISSALA]; Movement for the Liberation and Development of Cameroon or MLDC [Marcel YONDO]; National Union for Democracy and Progress or UNDP [Maigari BELLO BOUBA]; Progressive Movement or MP; Social Democratic Front or SDF [John FRU NDI]; Union of Peoples of Cameroon or UPC [Augustin Frederic KODOCK]

Political pressure groups and leaders
Human Rights Defense Group [Albert MUKONG, president]; Southern Cameroon National Council [Ayamba Ette OTUN]

International organization participation
ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, C, CEMAC, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MONUSCO, NAM, OIC, OIF, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the us
Chief of mission Ambassador Joseph FOE-ATANGANA
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 Robert P. JACKSON
Embassy Avenue Rosa Parks, Yaounde
Mailing address
P. O. Box 817, Yaounde; pouch: American Embassy, US Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-2520
Telephone
[237] 2220 15 00; Consular: [237] 2220 16 03
FAX
[237] 2220 16 00 Ext. 4531; Consular FAX: [237] 2220 17 52
Branch office(s) Douala

Flag description
Three equal vertical bands of green (hoist side), red, and yellow, with a yellow five-pointed star centered in the red band; the vertical tricolor recalls the flag of France; red symbolizes unity, yellow the sun, happiness, and the savannahs in the north, and green hope and the forests in the south; the star is referred to as the "star of unity"
Note
Uses the popular Pan-African colors of Ethiopia

National symbol(s)
Lion

National anthem
Name
"O Cameroun, Berceau de nos Ancetres" (O Cameroon, Cradle of Our Forefathers)
Lyrics/music
Rene Djam AFAME, Samuel Minkio BAMBA, Moise Nyatte NKO'O [French], Benard Nsokika FONLON [English]/Rene Djam AFAME
Note
Adopted 1957; Cameroon's anthem, also known as "Chant de Ralliement" (The Rallying Song), has been used unofficially since 1948 and officially adopted in 1957; the anthem has French and English versions whose lyrics differ


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  Cameroon (Yaounde):


  GPS points from Cameroon (Yaounde)

Mao Kilbu North Province

Nsou Cameroon (general)

Akon South Region

Bidjenj Ii Littoral Region

Kombo-laka Adamaoua Region

Manjou Centre Region

Mfomo South Region

N'guma Extreme-nord




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