Cameroon’s first head of state was Andre-Marie Mbida. He grew up in a world of status and high culture, having been born into an elite and influential family in the north of his country. Focusing on his education, the young guy joined in a prestigious school at a young age and studied a variety of challenging courses. Andre then went on to a prominent and influential school, where he acquired many key connections. He worked as a teacher for a short time after graduation before going into business for himself. As he traveled across the country, he quickly built a tremendous network of important locals. Mbida subsequently went on to join a colonial political party, taking advantage of his outstanding linguistic abilities. He was then voted to his colonial occupier’s parliament as the first native person from his nation. Andre then used his background to become the leader of his homeland’s semi-independent government. He resigned from his office after a fierce feud with the occupying power’s commissioner, but remained deeply involved in domestic politics. Mbida was imprisoned after his country got independence and found himself on the wrong side of his erstwhile comrades. He was released on medical grounds after suffering greatly during his captivity. Despite the fact that he sought treatment overseas and recovered, he was imprisoned again when he returned to his homeland. Mbida then died as a result of his injuries.
Childhood and Adolescence
Andre Marie Mbida was born in Edinding, Cameroon’s Nyong and Sanaga area, on January 1, 1917. Simon Mobile Ongo Nanga, the chief of the Ngo Iougou tribe, was Andre’s father. Ngono Veronique was his mother’s name.
Andre went to a primary school in York as a child. He attended the ‘Minor Seminary’ at Akono from 1929 until 1935. Math and Latin were among the subjects he studied.
He attended Mvolye’s ‘Major Seminary’ from 1935 to 1943. During his time at the institution, he made friends with two future African leaders.
The Career of Mbida
Mbida graduated from the seminary in 1943. He selected a secular career as the Head Teacher of a Blessing school.
Mbida maintained his education while working as a teacher. He became a lawyer in 1945. He was recruited as a treasury clerk in Yaounde for a short time.
Later in 1945, he worked as a business agent for the private sector, alternating between Yaounde and Ebolowa. For the following nine years, he would be in this role.
He began working for the ‘French Socialist Party’ in 1950. (SFIO). The political group SFIO was active in Cameroon, which was then under French authority, although being located in France.
He was elected to the Territorial Assembly in 1952 after running for office.
He was designated as an official adviser to the French Union on October 10, 1953.
In 1954, Mbida resigned from the party. He then co-founded the ‘Coordinating Committee of Cameroon,’ or COCOCAM.
An armed insurrection against colonial occupation was violently suppressed in 1955. Despite the fact that Andre did not take part in the revolt, he led a campaign to release those who had been imprisoned for their role in it.
The ambitious young man ran for election to the French Parliament on January 2, 1956. He was elected to the French Parliament by a razor-thin margin, being the first native Cameroonian to do so.
Mbida was assigned to two crucial parliamentary committees on January 31, 1956. He used his membership to help his motherland gain independence.
Cameroon established an autonomous state, a quasi-sovereign entity, on April 16, 1957.
On May 12, 1957, the Council of Ministers elected him to be their President. As a result, he became the autonomous state’s leader.
The nationalist leader flew to the United Nations in September 1957 to deliver an important address. Cameroon, he said, was a “pilot” country.
He introduced a law on October 24, 1957, to design Cameroon’s national emblem and anthem.
He founded the ‘Cameroonian Party of Democrats’ on January 12, 1958. “The alert and brave cock,” was their motto.
After a difficult argument with the ‘French High Commissioner for Cameroon,’ he resigned from his position in the administration on May 5, 1958.
Cameroon became a completely independent country in 1960.
A group of Cameroonian MPs, including Mbida, issued a manifesto condemning a single-party state on June 23, 1962. They had all been imprisoned. Soon after, the politician got ill and mostly blind.
He was freed from prison in 1965.
In 1966, Mbida received permission to travel to France for medical treatment.
Mbida returned to Cameroon on August 3, 1968. He was placed under home arrest right away.
The political leader was released from custody on May 30, 1972.
Mbida’s Major Projects
From May 12, 1957, to February 16, 1958, Andre-Marie Mbida served as the first Head of State of Cameroon. He took advantage of his position and ability to free his motherland from the colonial French government’s shackles.
Personal History and Legacy
Andre-Marie Mbida married Marguerite Embolo, the daughter of a strong tribal leader, on August 14, 1946. Mbida and his wife have a total of six children.
Louis Tobie Mbida, one of his sons, is the current leader of the Cameroonian Democratic Party. Simon Pierre Omgba Mbida, another son, is a Cameroonian diplomat.
The political leader became very ill in 1980. He went to France for treatment and died on May 2 in a hospital.
Estimated Net worth
Andre is one of the wealthiest politicians, as well as one of the most popular. Andre Marie Mbida’s net worth is estimated to be $1.5 million, according to Wikipedia, Forbes, and Business Insider.
This prominent politician spent his entire life as a devout Catholic. In the modern age, he was the second native African head of state.
The famed leader was the first post-independence Cameroonian to be imprisoned for political reasons.