When someone yells “Go Lions” in the village of Tugi, Cameroon, Africa, it can cause panic.
But this soccer season in Tugi, those words may be coming from the mouth of The Fon, His Royal Highness W.M. Mbakwa, ruler of the village of 3,500.
When the Tugi’s Government Technical Secondary School soccer team takes the field they will be wearing uniforms of the New Richmond Lions thanks to New Richmond High School and its French teacher Roger Nyam, a native of Tugi.
“We wish the donors could really come visit our village so that we can show them our love and appreciation and share a meal and some kola nut with them,” His Royal Highness W.M. Mbakwa said. “The villagers are so proud of their children and the school. They love to fondly refer to the students as young Americans because of their American jerseys.”
“Once again, on behalf of the kids of Tugi, I thank New Richmond Schools for the donation,” said Nyam, who makes pilgrimages back to his hometown with (or ships) donated items from New Richmond. “It made a world of difference in the lives of those kids in my hometown.”
Nyam noted that the Fons of other villages envy Tugi.
“They know very well that the state did not provide those jerseys to the school and that they came all the way from the United States,” said Nyam, who will have more soccer jerseys for his 2014 trip to his home town.
“We just bought new varsity jerseys this year and I will have two bags of jerseys for Roger next year (pending school board approval for disposal),” said New Richmond High School athletic director Doug Foote.
“We want to thank Mr. Roger Nyam for not forgetting where he comes from and for knowing what the kids really need back here and ask him to extend our love and appreciation to New Richmond High School and the people of New Richmond,” said Mr. Manasse Mbakwa, president of the Tugi Cultural and Development Association, speaking on behalf of the village and schools. “May God bless them. We love you.”
Mr. Olivier Mbazogo, the sports teacher at the Tugi secondary school, said he felt excited coaching a team that has sports attire that everyone admires.
“Those jerseys made the students excited about participating in sports,” said Mbazogo.
Cameroon is bordered by Nigeria, Chad, Central African Republic, Congo and Gabon on the west coast of Africa. Tugians are mainly farmers and grassers involve in the production of cereals, roots, tubers, vegetables, cattle, goats, sheep, horses and cola nuts.
Tugi is on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TugiVillage.