Creating a Remote Labour Force : The Case of Cameroon

Creating a Remote Labour Force

The Case of Cameroon

Written and presented by Gerald Nupa B Eng BCS MICM



This document is a request for comment RFC document whose purpose is to introduce the concept of the Remote Labour Force. It will look at what is a RLF, its purpose, organisation, advantages and limitations. It will also provide some relevant references for interested readers.

What is a Remote Labour Force?

An RLF, is a revolutionary concept within the developing world. It proposes the use of remotely-based human resource [labour] in the development process within the target country. This is better illustrated with the use of an example. Many of the top African football players, are based in more sophisticated and higher-earning European Leagues and teams. They set up home and families within these countries for many years. As they earn their living and plough their trade, they are often called upon by their Countries for national Service. This takes the form of Qualification games, or World Cup or African Nations Cup games. This is followed by a financial reward to cover expenses and other allowances. The country performs better at these competitions, which raises the profile of the country internationally and creates more exposure for rising talent. It may even lead to foreign investment in the Country’s football sector or any other sector for that matter.

The point here is that, the players, are not part of an Active Local Work force, but part of a Remotely based, work force. By creating a formal structure to manage these players and their activities, the Government, has taken advantage of their talents in order to improve itself.

Thus the RLF concept, takes this a step further by using it in other areas of Government.

Why create a RLF?

Over the last decade, Cameroon has witnessed the greatest exodus of the most important components of its Labour Force i.e. Young men and women within the ages of 18 and 37. Normally referred to as the ‘Brain Drain’, this has affected the country’s ability to grow, be independent and creative. Most of the exiles are resident in remote countries, within Europe and America working extra hard for their host economies. Money sent back to families and friends at home, is the only major return gained from this exodus. The country’s human resource as well as physical infrastructure remains the same over many years and in some cases, degenerates.

The RLF Project intends to find ways through which these exiles will be able to contribute directly to the physical infrastructure of their Home Countries.

The RLF is also a cost cutting initiative. Currently, more specialised sectors of government use foreign expertise in the provision of services, for example in the Information Technology sector. Foreign experts are not cheap and their use is a huge drain on government resources. Via the RLF, cost effective arrangements could be made with volunteers. For example, my understanding is that, footballers usually do not earn as much playing for the national team, as they would, playing for their Clubs. However, the patriotic gesture, national honour and other kindly perks make the case for the Gov’t to pay a reduced amount of remuneration for the job done. The same could apply within the RLF. Privileges, like free health Care could be provided to those who contribute towards a major project via the RLF.

What areas will the RLF apply?

The RLF can be applied to areas within government which require expertise that cannot be found locally. For the concept to have a chance, it has to be applied cautiously on a trial basis. RLF can also be used within the Private sector. Usually, expertise within the private sector is sourced from business partners via established business relationships; therefore, this concept might not be very popular with the private sector. Besides, the concept is targeted primarily at the public sector.

In the first instance certain criteria should be provided for creating a RLF within a particular sector or area of Government. Criteria should consider the extent of the solution required, possible alternatives to using the RLF, cost of production, availability of local skilled labour and more.

How will the RLF Work?

The plan is for the Project to be implemented, managed and administered entirely by the Government. The Gov’t will have to create a specialist agency with trained staff that will be responsible for overall management of the project.

The Structure of the Project is really star shaped with the specialist agency in the middle, the RLF Groups or Consultants on one side, and the applicable areas within government on the other. The Agency will be responsible for managing Projects, seeking consultants for projects, providing compensation for Consultant claims, preparing and providing Project documentation, liaising with RLF Project Groups etc. 

RLF Project Groups or Consultants are those experts resident abroad who are recruited to provide a particular solution by the national agency.

 A universally accessible platform should be created to facilitate the organisation, administration and tracking of on going projects. I am thinking here of a Project Management website of some sort.

Published Monday, 01 Jan. 2007. 00:01


Fri, 25 Apr. 2008. 08:04 by Visitor

Great idea. Wonder if it's workable knowing the cameroonosphere.

Fri, 28 Aug. 2009. 11:08 by mafue forchu

daddy this is very u


Leave a Comment

Your Name (required):
Your Comment (required):
Please enter the code above in the box below without the dots:
Other Great Blogs
Bimeyen's Blog
Ndikum's Blog
Check this great idea on how to Send Great gifts to family in Cameroon. Click below. Lost of people talking about it and using it too...