By Joe Dinga Pefok
On the occasion of this year’s World Press Freedom Day on May 3, reputed mobile telephone company, Orange Cameroun, once more reassured observers of its status as a citizen-friendly enterprise, by offering Health and Accident Insurance Policy to Cameroonian Journalists.
The unprecedented gesture was formally announced in the auditorium of the magnificent structure that Orange Cameroun has constructed at Makepe, Douala V.
Speaking at the ceremony, the General Manager of Orange Cameroun, Frederic Debord, said the company knows how important the noble profession of journalism is to society in general. He said as a citizen-friendly enterprise that is concerned with what is happening in the environment, as well as listen to the environment, Orange Cameroun is aware of the risks that Journalists face each day, in the exercise of their profession.
The General Manager said it was as a result of Orange Cameroun being conscious of these risks of accidents and sickness that Journalists face daily in the exercise of their noble profession, that the company that has accompanied Journalists in other aspects, decided to accompany them further to enable them to have a peaceful mind and thus be in a position to give the best of themselves in the profession. This is by providing journalists with a Health and Accident Insurance Policy.
Convention Signed With Bank And An Insurance Company
The General Manager went further to talk about a convention a bank as well as an insurance company, Atlantique Assurances, have together with Orange Cameroun jointly signed.
Thanks to the convention, it is now possible for interested members of the public to subscribe to a Health and Accident Insurance Policy at low cost and in a simplified process and pay for the insurance.
Through an Orange Money platform, and on the terms of their chosen options. The project has been baptised as, ‘Assur Tous’.
One Year Insurance Policy
Meanwhile, the General Manager of Orange Cameroun disclosed that they concerted at the company on how to further assist Journalists, and it was agreed that the company should offer them the Health and Accident Insurance Policy. The insurance policy being offered to journalists is for one year. The amount to be paid for the policy is FCFA 30,000 for each journalist, and the maximum total amount of bills that can be covered by the insurance policy during that one year is FCFA 400,000.
It was jointly explained by Orange Cameroun personnel and personnel of Atlantique Assurances, that when a journalist is registered and his insurance policy is prepared, the person will be given a list of the health units in different parts of the country, to which he or she can go for treatment in case of illness or accident.
It should be noted that Orange Cameroun discussed the project with some associations of Journalists, among which were the National Syndicate Of Cameroon Journalists, SNJC, the association of Cameroon English Speaking Journalists, CAMASEJ, the association of Cameroon Sports Journalists, among others. The groups whose members will benefit from the Health and Accident Insurance Policy being offered freely to Journalists by Orange Cameroun, were all represented at the May 3 ceremony in Douala.
Worth noting that all Journalists who were invited to the ceremony, were registered on the spot for the Health and Accident Insurance Policy, by a team from Atlantique Assurances.
Journalists Express Profound Gratitude
Meanwhile speaking on behalf of the associations of Journalists that were present, the National President of SNJC, Denis Nkwebo, paid profound gratitude to Orange Cameroun for the wonderful gesture of having decided to foot the bills to enable journalists to have a Health and Accident Insurance Policy. He said while some multinational companies in Cameroon behave as if they are just passing, Orange Cameroun has once proven that it is a citizen-friendly enterprise, and so cares about the people.
Nkwebo talked of the big risks that Journalists in Cameroon especially of the private press face every day, as they run around in exercise of their duty, but with a large majority without any insurance policy covering them. He noted that things had worsened with the absence of the Collective Convention.
The SNJC President stated that the Health and Accident Policy being offered to journalists by Orange Cameroun has come to fill the vacuum that newspaper publishers and proprietors of audio-visual media organs in the country, have generally left by not insuring their employees.
A Senior management personnel of Atlantique Assurances disclosed at the ceremony, that only two percent of Cameroonians have health insurance.