According to some of these mayors, the allocation of the said account is an important part of revenue, which would facilitate payment of salaries, follow up their strategic plans and carry out other developmental activities.
Talking to the press recently, the Mayor of Bamendjou Council in the West region, said they were very happy with the move made by government; describing the financial arrangement as a source of relief to councils like his which have been facing extreme difficulties.
"At the kick start of the 7-year-mandate of great opportunities, the state now knows that it is necessary and important to offer a live line to councils; even if it is just to enable us pay salaries,” Mayor Kamdoum said.
The Mayor questioned how the government had expected them to assume their responsibilities after defaulting to pay council allocation for two straight quarters running. He called on the government to remember that councils were already into the second quarter of 2019 and it would be wise for the government to disburse councils’ dues for the second quarter of this year so as to permit councils clear up their back load of salary arrears.
Likewise, Francis Zibi Samba,Mayor of Ayos, said the initiative was an indication of government’s determination to accelerate the decentralization process. The Ayos Mayor announced that virtually all councils in the Nyong and Mefou communities had, since January, received their third and fourth quarter allocations from the supplementary taxes of 2018.
“Thanks to this buffer of oxygen, we were able to hold our annual accounts review session, clear the back load of unpaid staff salaries, pay our outstanding insurance dues to the national social insurance fund, and embark on some development projects that are intended to improve the living condition of our people,” Mayor Samba stated.
Some of the mayors affirm that the old method of paying this money to councils was cumbersome, leading to persistent delays. It pushed councils to always default in meeting up with their engagements to development partners. They are also asking government to show consistency in replenishing the new account at the Central Bank, so that no time comes when councils will not be able to withdraw their money from that account.
Meanwhile, Jules Hilaire Focka Focka, Mayor of Bafoussam I Council, told reporters that Mayors cannot work without money; reason why he saw the development as a source of solace to all council administrators.
He expressed thanks to the government for the effort made to ease the problems of Councils. Though he appreciated the effort made, Mayor Focka called for an upward review of the amount paid to councils from these taxes, stressing that without such upward review, it would be difficult for councils to meet the development needs of their communities and populations. “The development needs of the Bafoussam I Council are far more that what we receive presently as allocation from the state supplementary tax,” the Mayor stated.