From hunter to entrepreneur

Having been a hunter, the main source of his primary school fees, the native of Etwii Village in Ngie Subdivision in the North Rest Region is now a respectable name when it comes to entrepreneurship in the City of Buea. Andouba Cletus Atali, 34, owns businesses that employ a minimum of 25 persons.

Andouba Cletus Atali, who imposed himself as a wellestablished entrepreneur in Buea, is gradually tighte - ning his grip as a philanthropist. Upon gaining employment at Da Crown Bar in 2017, he used his petty salary for charitable works. With the humanitarian zeal ignited in him, he sponsored pupils and students in school. He provided food to the hungry in restaurants or in his house. His compassion for those in orphanages was felt whenever he visited the Mile 14 Orphanage monthly. While a student at the University of Buea between 2010 and 2013, Andouba Cletus assisted many of his classmates with handouts and rents.

THE BEGINNING

Born on September 17, 1984 in Etwii village in Ngie Subdivision, North West Region, Andouba Cletus is the last child in a family of six children. He attended primary education at Government Primary School Etwii from 1991 to 1998. Because his lovely mother could not conveniently pay his school fees which stood at 1500 FCFA, he went hunting every day after school to raise the money. “I was a pupil, a farmer and a hunter at the same time. I reared goats and pigs. For hunting, I returned home with games like grass cutter, rat mole and bush fowls etc. I raised a minimum of 1500 FCFA per week from the sale of the games, some of which was consumed at home,” he said.

As the best Arithmetic pupil, little Andouba benefitted from a scholarship to study at Government Technical College Teze in Ngie Subdivision. But the offer was turned down by the mother. From 1999 to 2004, he was a student at Government High School Andek- Ngie, where he obtained his Cameroon General Certificate of Education (CGCE) Ordinary Level. Then, he moved to the Cameroon College of Arts, Science and Technology in 2006 and bagged CGCE Advanced Level the following year.

UNFRUITFUL DREAMS

Andouba Cletus believed he was born to be a teacher. With that in mind, he pursued that dream with passion, but it didn’t come true. Having gained employment at Da Crown Buea in 2017, he used part of his petty earnings to sit the competitive entrance examination into the Higher Teachers’ Training College Bambili. He succeeded in the written phase, but failed the orals.

He did not give up. While still working at Da Crown, he gave part time lessons in Mathematics and Chemistry to students of Salvation Bilingual High School and Summerset Bilingual College in Buea. In 2008, he enrolled into the University of Buea (UB) to read Mathematics, but abandoned the programme for want of time since he worked as a waiter at Da Crown Bar. The following year, he still passed the written part and failed the orals of ENS Bambili. In 2013, he graduated with a B.Sc in Journalism and Mass Communication.

TURNING POINT

2010 was the turning point in his life. Andouba’s boss, Tabi Wilfred upon travelling abroad recommended him to management to take charge of the business. Andouba threw in the towel in 2015 and opened his own business. “I tendered my resignation, my brother assisted me with some money and I opened a depot in Malingo. Prospered in business and today I own a car washing point in Mile 18 towards Muea, a snack bar in Bolifamba (Mile 16) and a canteen in UB.

Apart from the canteen, all my businesses that employed above 25 workers were shut down in 2018 due to the socio-political crisis. Nevertheless, his family gives him reason to smile. Andouba Cletus Atali is married to Pamela Andouba and their union is blessed with four children.


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