On Assignment: 50th Anniversary of the Reunification of Cameroon

A few weeks ago, I had the great opportunity to cover the 50th Anniversary of the Reunification of Cameroon in West Central Africa. This photo documentary was contracted by the agency Havas Worlwide Paris and the Presidency of Cameroon.

I photographed Paul Biya, the President of the Republic of Cameroon, multiple political personalities as well as the celebrations that occurred in the city of Buea.

Beyond my official role of shooting the event, I also captured some fantastic images of a few of the locals — here are a some of my favorites:

Cameroon 4

A little bit of history of Cameroon:

After the Germans were defeated in World War I in Cameroon, its territory was partitioned between France and Britain. On 28 June 1919, Germany signed the Versailles Treaty, relinguishing all of her colonies including Cameroon to Britain and France. After World War II, Article 76(b) of the United Nations Charter called on Britain and France to develop their territories towards independence and self-government.

On 1 January 1960, East Cameroon gained independence. On 21 February 1960 the new nation held a Constitutional Referendum. On 5 May 1960 Ahmadou Ahidjo became president. On 11 February 1961, a plebiscite organised by the United Nations was held in Cameroon. The pleibiscite was to choose between free association with an independent state; or integration. On 12 February 1961 the British Northern Cameroons attached itself to Nigeria, while the southern part voted for reunification as the Federal Republic Of Cameroon. To negotiate the terms of this union, the Foumban Conference was held from 16–21 July 1961. Foncha, the leader of the KNDP, accepted the federation while thinking of a confederation. Buea was to become the capital. Ahidjo accepted the federation thinking it was a step towards a unitary state. On 14 August 1961 the federal constitution was adopted, with Ahidjo as president. John Ngu Foncha became the prime minister. British Southern Cameroon became independent on 1 October 1961, attaching itself to the Republic of Cameroon. (From Wikipedia)

Cameroon Grid