China-Cameroon Cooperation : Meet The Chinese Community Leader Of Yaounde!

Since arriving in the Cameroonian capital 8 years ago, the 47-year-old has kept up a busy schedule, providing drinking water to several communities by drilling boreholes.

His residence is suggestive of what he does for a living. The only error you might make is to take him for a heavy duty vehicle mechanic. Or some mechanical engineer. Because his residence is “littered” with broken down trucks and all sorts of heavy machinery parts. It is even possible – at first glance – to take his office/residence for a scrap metal collection centre! Interestingly, he is none of these! Rather, his passion and line of business are for something - quite different! 
“Relations between China and Cameroon are excellent,” Zai Yuan affirms. “At the level of private people, the relationship is also excellent. Chinese and Cameroonians assist each other. And we are very happy that we have been working together smoothly,” says the 47-year-old. Whose profession is drilling boreholes. So far, he has transferred the technology to 20 Cameroonians. 
“I come and go back to China. I go to remote communities with no drinking water and drill boreholes for them,” says the “water” contractor. Puffing at a Chinese cigarette - with legs crossed - as he reclines in a chair in his office/residence. In the Cameroonian capital neighbourhood of Quartier Fouda. While responding to our questions. 
Zai Yuan arrived in the Cameroonian capital, Yaounde, in 2008. Ever since, he has not only been about his business of drilling boreholes. But his character, integrity and sense of selflessness were found worthy of public service. By the 2,000-strong Chinese community in Yaounde. 
“My main role is to look into the problems of Chinese in Yaounde such as assisting them to get official papers, handling problems with Cameroonians….. If the problem is not difficult, they handle it themselves. My position is not on the basis of tenure per se. After five years, the Chinese community will decide if I should continue in the role or not,” Yuan explains.  
“The challenges of Chinese in Yaounde are not many,” Yuan points out. “I help them to understand Cameroon laws and regulations and how to operate their businesses within the confines of the law. This is the most important service I offer them. The rest, they handle by themselves because they are not major problems,” he adds.  
“I have been in Cameroon for 8 years,” Zai recalls. “The major concern of Chinese in Cameroon is security. Chinese live in clusters because they want security for their progress and development. I plead with Cameroonian authorities to provide more security to Chinese,&rd...



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