In the May 8, 2019 tweet, the Minister of Public Health wondered why a routine administrative act should generate so much noise at a time when there are more important issues at stake.
"It seems very curious," he wrote, to see people get so worked up "over a delegation of signature which is a normal administrative formality".
Dr Manaouda Malachie called on Cameroonians to focus on real struggles, especially with regards to sustainable development and the improvement of livelihoods.
His words: "It is good to focus, in my opinion, our energies on real struggles, especially those of sustainable development and improvement of the quality of life of compatriots."
Decree No. 2019/043 of February 5, 2019 permanently delegating signature of the President of the Republic to Minister of State Ferdinand Ngoh Ngoh has been making waves across the country and beyond.
This decree has had the effect of a bomb on social media, confirming in the eyes of some observers a transfer of power by mutual agreement between Paul Biya and his Secretary General.
Far from that, many have argued that the move is not strange, as some previous Secretaries General in both the Biya and Ahidjo regime have benefited from such constitutional provisions.
The delegated powers are said to be limited to certain decisions affecting the life of the country.
Analysts say it is a move akin to “democratic” and “normal” societies, which should ordinarily not be a subject for debates were it not for the fact that most Cameroonians don’t take interest in understanding how the statecraft is managed.
“So when SDO delegates powers to the first assistant to sign documents, is that anything strange? Delegation of powers is a routine feature in administration/bureaucratic practice,” a political analyst posited.
The decree giving powers to Ngoh Ngoh is backed by Article 10 (2) of Cameroon's constitution which states, "The President of the Republic may delegate some of his powers to the Prime Minister, other members of Government and any other senior administrative officials of the State, within the framework of their respective duties."
Dr Manaouda joined government on January 4, 2019, succeeding Andre Mama Fouda at the Ministry of Public Health. He has since been active on social media.