Mola Dr. Humphrey Ekem’a Monono
The Bakweri Language and Literacy Association (BALALIA)
Dear Mola Board Chair
We of the Fako Foundation, Incorporated (USA), salute you and your management team, for the noble task of promoting and preserving aspects of our ancestral culture. Very importantly, we note with admiration that perhaps for the first time in the evolutionary history of our people the Wakpwes, concerted, practical, and action oriented efforts have been put in place, to document electronically and otherwise, aspects of the rich culture of the Fakolanders. Such efforts have resulted in the active teaching of the Mokpwe language and the translation of some of the Books of the Holy Bible into the Mokpwe Language. And yes, we do know and realize that, the translation efforts are a job in progress, requiring sacrifices of many kinds, and such sacrifices being the duty of all Vakpwes, that can afford to be part of this unfolding history, under our own very eyes.
The Wakpwes are a monolithic group but geographically and sub culturally, they are a diverse and a polymorphic people. They are thus Wato wa Szrawa (coastal people), Wato wa Likumba (forest people), and Wato wa Vako (mountain people). By virtue of their sub geolocations and sub sociocultural attributes and identities, the Wakpwes and Fakolanders at different times of their evolutionary history, had deities as Wato wa Vhenama (human beings), specific to locations and /or need. Thus, there is the Liengu la Muaja (the goddess of the sea) and Evaszra-Moto, the deity of the Vako a.k.a. the Gbwea Mountain. Whenever, there was some serious problems in Vakoland, for example a disease epidemic, widespread and constant death of Wana (children) or Melokeh (youths), when miscarriages went rampant or Walana (women) became infertile, a Mbando was called for and organized by the elders of the people, charged with such matters. The Mbando evoked the relevant deity to intervene on behalf of the people, who placed their trust in them.
Despite the above and well before the advent of Colonial Missionaries, the Wakpwes still believed in a Monolithic and an All Powerful God, variously called: Ovaszreh, Loweh, Maikeh, or some other combinations or forms, for example Low’a la Mongo mo Ndando, Owaszreh-Loweh, Ta’ata Maikeh, etc.
The Vakpwes are therefore a people of faith, a people that believe in a One God above all other gods and a people with a long history of a spiritual journey, a journey that is in progress and with an even brighter future.
The Fako Foundation, is therefore making this modest contribution to you and your team’s efforts and as guided by the Holy Spirit of the One True God, to bring closer and hopefully in perpetuity the word of God to our people, the Wakpwes, as a chosen people for Evangelization.
May God bless BALALIA in its spiritual and cultural services to the Wato wa Wakpwe.
Eyoleh eweh na BALALIA (Peace)
M. M. Matute, Ph.D.
President, the Fako Foundation Incorporated
Foundation Management Team and Contributors
Szrango Dr. Samuel Belsham Moki, Maryland
Szrango Dr. Augustine Evella Kange, Minnesota
Szrango Samuel Moka Moliki, Georgia
Nyango Pauline Liengu Litumbe-Hill, Missouri
Szrango Dr. Frederick Ngomba Eko, California
Nyango Embelle Litumbe, Florida
Nyango Mariana Mojoko Matute, Arkansas
Szrango George Ndiv’a Lisinge, Fakoland
Szrango Moluwa mo Matute, Arkansas
BALALIA gets Fako Foundation Financial Support
By Moki S. Mokondo in Buea (Journalist)
Members of the Bakweri Language and Literacy Association (BALALIA) now have a sigh of relief after receiving financial support from a US based organization composed of Fakoland indigenes residing in the USA called Fako Foundation, Incorporated (USA).
The sum of FCFA 300,000 was handed to the Programmes Coordinator, Rev. Eyole Genty Njie Ndeley and other members present on Tuesday June 26, 2018 at the Bakweri Language and Linguistic Centre located at the Former CDC Molyko Driver’s Quarter in Buea.
While presenting the financial support to BALALIA, Mola Ndiv’a Lisinge (the Foundation’s Project Director in Cameroon) read a message of encouragement from Mola Moluwa Matute (the President of the Fako Foundation), in which members of the Fako Foundation expressed their joy for work done to develop the Mòkpè (Bakweri) alphabet which has resulted to the active teaching of the Mòkpè language and the translation of some Books of the Holy Bible into the Mòkpè language.
In the message, Fako Foundation members also voiced their pleasure to be part of the unfolding history and hope their modest contribution to the Holy Bible translation project will help bring the word of God closer to the Wakpwes who are a chosen people in this Evangelistic mission. The Fako Foundation message included a socio-cultural and historical profile of the diverse and monolithic nature of the Mokpwes, as it pertains to their spiritual life.
On his part, the Programme Coordinator, Rev. Eyole Genty Ndeley lauded the gesture and promised that their association will render accounts of the financial support received. He noted that while translating the Holy Bible into the Mòkpè language, they are also making efforts to teach the language so that the translated work will have readers.
According to the Holy Father, it will be useless to translate the Holy Bible into Mòkpè without a readership. For this reason, they have created special classes within some neighbourhoods and villages where teachers will be introducing learners to the Mòkpè Alphabet and eventually train them on how to read and write in the Mòkpè language. He went further to state that they have come out with dairies and alphabet charts in Mòkpè to facilitate the learning of the language.
Since its creation, the Fako Foundation has sponsored some projects back at home. First it was a special free health clinic in Wokwaongo (Bokwaongo), then academic financial assistance to needy students, followed by scholarships to deserving students at all levels of studies and then academic financial assistance to needy students. The foundation’s academic projects have slowed down due to the current situation in Fakoland.