In Africa, Cameroon represents a country of its own, enriched with a cultural diversity. It concentrates the best of Africa. This exceptional heritage offers a mosaic of cultures for the satisfaction of all tourist expectations. In short, the outstanding originality of the country is expressed in its cultural diversity.
The population is a great melting pot of 250 ethnic groups, attached to the protection of their customs and lifestyle. In the North and the West regions, the authentic traditional palaces are very popular among tourists. They are independently ruled by chiefs in a peaceful cohabitation with the democratic central power, customs and modernity, economy and human values. Nevertheless, the territorial areas seem to follow the inherited pre-colonial subdivisions. Traditional chiefs play an important role in the cultural and political fields, and also maintain a moral and religious order at their local level.
As mentioned before, the governmental authorities recognize their moral influence as well as the majority of people. In the villages, the inhabitants naturally identify and resort to their power.
Each traditional territory is organized around the symbolic figure of the Chief. According to the region, he is called Fon of Lamido, even Sultan in some Muslim kingdoms. He stands in the heart of the social organisation and exercises political and spiritual functions. The thriving of its reign strongly depends on his capacity of mediating between the living and the forefathers, hierarchy inside and danger outside his administrative territory.
To avoid despotism, the Chief is responsible to his great fellow servants and some secret societies, contributing to raise a balanced exercise of power. The palace symbolizes both power and cultural influence in a value system endorsed by all the community members.
Today, traditional societies stand at the crossroads, as they need to find out a stability between the protection of their common heritage and the development of personal ambitions. Despite all, this prestigious tribal power keeps on adapting the country’s evolution. That should explain why Cameroonian people are so proud of their cultural treasures.