The acquisition of land for most families and individuals in urban centres in Cameroon is usually finance-stretching, taking several years of savings. In some cases, people contract loans from local financial institutions with high-interest rates paid over the years.
Land tenure officials too, do not make things easy as their policy on land ownership and titling is always challenging with a complicated, obscure process involving a huge corruption network that drains more than it facilitates the process.
When an average family goes through all these and puts together resources to build a two- or a three-bedroom house, the problem of space crops up as beds, chairs, tables, and other household equipment usually occupy the little available space in the rooms.
The new technology created by Che Humphred Nche, a cabinet maker in Bamenda, Cameroon, is called “Foldable Cabinet Works.” This technology has come a long way to reduce the problem of space management at home to occupy the usually many household equipment.
Che Humphrey, a product of Government Technical College (GTC) Ombe in the Southern Cameroons of an old, batch of the 1980s, has accumulated a wealth of experience over the years, enabling him to leave his mark in the production of all nature of cabinetry. With more than 30 years of furniture and cabinetwork, Che Humphred now uses wood to produce household and other items and equipment that can be folded and kept when not in use.
His foldable cabinet work items include relaxing chairs, rocking chairs, table chairs, and tables for the ironing of clothes. Other items Che produces that can be folded include trays, babies’ prams, dryers for babies’ napkins and clothes, trolleys that could be used in bars to carry drinks, trolleys to be used in hotels to deliver food, drinks, and other items, and trolleys to be used in hospitals to carry medicines and drugs to patients’ wards.
Che’s personal creativity has opened doors for him. He has been invited to several exhibition events and contests across Cameroon and abroad. During a national contest for the best craftsmanship in Limbe in December 1995, he won first prize in woodwork. In another contest in 1998 in Ndop, Ngoketunjia division, Che won the second prize in woodwork. At the second international handicrafts exhibition of Cameroon in January 2010, Che was awarded a certificate for his brilliant participation.
His hard work took him to the international level when in January 2011, Che was opportune to represent the country amongst four others in an International Arts Festival in Turkey.
Che’s new technology makes it easy for his products to be moved from one place to the other because of their foldable nature.
Despite his efforts at making life easy, Che still faces challenges in the domain of modern equipment for mass production.
“I lack modern equipment like sanding machine, drilling machine, jig-sawing machine, and other modern tools,” the local engineer tells Timescape Magazine in Bamenda.
“My appeal is that all people of goodwill and entities that enjoy my craft should promote the growth of initiatives like mine to blossom” Che concludes.