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Kathleen Ndongmo @KathleenNdongmo
, 22 tweets, 11 min read Read on Twitter

So I just got out of the French embassy in Yaoundé where I went to submit a short-stay visa application. I have been left speechless by the officer at counter 1. @FRauCameroun @G_Thibault_Fr
I got there & greeted a cheerful: "hello, good morning". I noticed she did not respond. But that's never an issue.

She took my documents & proceeded to take the ones she didn't need & silently "throw" them back at me.

Still not a problem. You must bear with them. 😀
Then she asked:

"ou es votre domicile?" While looking at my files.

I responded: "I live in Yaoundé."

She shot back: "parlez en français, vous êtes a l'ambassade de France"


As in, I was being barred from speaking a national language.

@FRauCameroun @G_Thibault_Fr
So I tried again. In French. Told her I live in Yaounde but my company was registered in Douala etc... (They generally do not give you explanation opportunities)...

She cut in: "vous risqué un refus par raison de non competence géographique..."

@FRauCameroun @G_Thibault_Fr
And continued.... "Mais si vous voulez toujours faire votre dépôt de dossier vous le pouvez mais je vous dit vous risqué un refus"

Me: "madame je ne comprends pas"
At this point I am confused. She gives no further explanation & continues processing

@FRauCameroun @G_Thibault_Fr
She asks if it's my first time traveling to France. I tell her it isn't.

She asks for the visa fee. I hand it over. She tells me to come back Thursday to pick up my passport.

I take the rest of my stuff & leave.

@FRauCameroun @G_Thibault_Fr
Basically, if I understand this encounter:

1. You are not allowed to speak English at @FRauCameroun even if they are in Cameroon whose official languages are French/Eng
2. If you own a business in another city where consular services are offered, you can't apply in another.
It might be that I am quite naive, did not read the directives on the French embassy website (which is in English & French) or that one of us was having a bad morning.

That was a strange encounter. I'd hope @FRauCameroun can educate me.
This thread is not to indict any one in particular. Just to highlight concerns as a user.

Visa application processes are neither easy nor cheap. Applicants will always do their best to meet requirements & sometimes, just sometimes it's important to let us SPEAK. @FRauCameroun
As it stands, I risk being denied a visa on a technicality... Because I am still to understand how it is that geography is an impediment to where I apply.

Well, I will wait to hear from the competent officials. @FRauCameroun @G_Thibault_Fr
"Non competence géographique...."

Been hearing a lot of this "non competence" buzzword lately.

Strange coincidence. 😁

Q: if a French national walked into the Cameroonian High Commission in Lagos to apply for a visa, & speaks in French, will they be told to speak English only?
NOTE: You will need to read the beginning of the thread.

UPDATE: The decision makers at the @FRauCameroun decided I wasn't worthy enough to get a visa. (Saw this coming after the blatant discrimination at my interview).

The reasons given are absurd.

Check the marked boxes.
8. The information provided to justify the purpose and conditions of the intended stay is unreliable.

9. Your intention to leave the territory of Member States before the expiry of the visa was not established.

The 2 reasons @FRauCameroun say they refused. But that's not true.
For some background:

I am invited to speak at the upcoming #IGF2018 @intgovforum & provided all necessary paperwork to this effect. It will not be my first schengen visa, I currently have a VALID US visa in my passport, why do I want to remain on schengen territory???? 😂
So basically, @FRauCameroun doesn't think that the well recognised Internet Governance Forum or speaking at it is a justifiable reason enough for a person to land in its territory.

No wahala.

One day, diplomacy will mean you treat people with respect & you charge fairly.
As much as I criticize services that take money from people to debase them, I also blame our govts.

Last year, a Cameroonian wrote an open letter in @lemondefr after getting a visa from Rwanda to Burkina Faso from.... the French embassy! @ThisIsAfricaTIA
The neocolonialism doesn't end there!

The French embassy in Rwanda also offers consular services for 7 #African countries!

See link:…

No surprises when they treat us worse than animals in our own countries. We need to revise diplomatic relations.
I tweeted this in June last year:

Yep - we have moronic governments in post french colonial Africa AND we are led by leaders who are puppets on the string of France.

I have no qualms speaking up.
I tweeted this in January 2014:

The French colonial pact is our stranglehold.

If I am being tracked by them and not liked for what I say, I am fine with that. Please refuse me a visa as many times as you like.
We will not stop speaking up.
We will not stop speaking truth to power.
We will not stop seeking to be treated as HUMANS.

Even at the risk of not getting visas.
Or losing opportunities, friendships and platforms.

It is the duty of our generation.
Africans deserve better.
At a time when #Cameroon is in a 2-year crisis with anglophones demanding greater autonomy, no marginalization & better treatment from the system, it is a shame that a consular officer at @FRauCameroun will tell me:

'You are at the French embassy, you must speak in French!'
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