Consolidating Ties: LECUDEM USA Joins Heart to Heart International at 25th Anniversary

An eleven-person delegation of the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting in the United States of America (LECUDEM-USA) was in Overland Park,  Kansas this past weekend to attend festivities marking the 25th Anniversary of Heart-to-Heart International, the not-for-profit organization that has been supporting efforts to refurbish and render fully operational the Lewoh Subdivisional Hospital at Anya, Lewoh. The delegation was led by LECUDEM-USA’s national President Fuajiawung M.A.

The 25th anniversary celebration was held in the Cottonwood Ballroom of Sheraton Overland Park Hotel in Lenexa from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday. Dubbed a “25 Year Journey,” the celebration honored, among others, Dr. John Nkengasong (aka Nkembejanyi), Director of Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), with a “Power of One Award.” Also honored at the occasion as the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee which received the Heart for Humanity Award.

Dr. John Nkengasong (Nkembejanyi), it is worth noting has been the main brain behind the bridge-building initiative that brought Heart-to-Heart to Lewoh three years ago to change the face of the Lewoh Sub-divisional Hospital, train volunteers and lay the foundation of this partnership. Heart to Heart International strengthens communities through improving health access, providing humanitarian development and administering crisis relief worldwide. The organization also engages volunteers, collaborates with partners and deploys resources to achieve its mission.

Together with and Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD), a leading global medical technology company with a commitment to advancing the world of health, Heart to Heart embarked in 2015 and 2016 to give the Fotabong Sub-divisional Hospital a facelift which included remodeling the initial structure, building a maternity ward, a water tank, and providing a generator and an ambulance to the facility.

It is in recognition of this partnership that LECUDEM-USA responded to Heart to Heart’s invitation to celebrate the organization’s 25th anniversary. HRH Fuajiawung on behalf of the people of Lewoh in the United States presented Heart to Heart with a wood carved mask laced with bronze from Cameroon in appreciation.

Photo Gallery


I write here on behalf of the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting to pay tribute to a great woman, Dr Atabong Grace, who served the world as a herbal practitioner with a rare gift from God. She is a shining light that has unexpectedly extinguished. This is a tragic loss for the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting, for Lebialem and for the world as a whole. Our hearts are touched with sorrow on her sudden death. However, LECUDEM and the Lewoh community as a whole will be forever happy to celebrate the achievements of the woman who displayed extraordinary qualities by making dipresed people happy again.

Dr Atabong Grace
Dr Atabong Grace

Dr Grace Atabong was a reputed naturopath, specialized in restoring optimal function to people with injuries to the muscle, bones, ligaments or the nervous system. She inherited this rare herbal knowledge from her mother, Mami Beanju child of Nkematabong from Efong, and she has been a tradi-practitioner for over forty years. She treated patients from far and wide, people of various prominences. Notably, she treated governors, Divisional officers, parliamentarians and their spouses, and in some occasions her patients came from as far as the United States. She worked hand in hand with conventional medical institutions such as the Mary Health of Africa Hospital which often referred very complicated bone cases to her.

LECUDEM was also a useful partner in the accomplishment of Dr Atabong’s godly mission to the world. The organization donated equipment including wheel chairs, crutches and bandages. I am pleased to inform you that on her deathbed (as her children testified) she deeply acknowledged the assistance given to her by LECUDEM.

As a devoted Catholic Christian, she combined her gift of natural healing and her deep-rooted faith in God to cure her patients. We will remember her for her unrivalled simplicity and for her exceptional concern for the destitute and love towards her patients. We will remember her for her unlimited compassion and the unwearied commitment to the service of mankind.

She has left an indelible legacy on the treatment of fractures and other complicated bone problems. It seems the greatest tribute LECUDEM would pay to her would be to encourage any of her seven children whom she has left behind to continue to execute this precious gift from God.

Dr Grace Atabongawung, you lived an accomplished life. You have arrived safely at your eternal destination after a complete consummate life; after an absolute existence that is recorded in your splendid and memorable works of kindness to mankind.  We will never again enjoy the qualities of the perfect Queen you were: considerate, caring, hardworking, loving, kind-hearted, simplistic and much more. But your example will be the light for future generations. THANK YOU, Queen of compassion. We say “farewell”, but you will forever remain in our dreams and in our hearts.

LECUDEM has no doubt that God will lovingly welcome you into heaven as a woman who dedicated her whole life caring compassionately for God’s creation.

May your soul rest in the peace of your ancestors!

Nkemngong Nkengasong

LECUDEM General President

Fotabong Parish Presbytery (Rev. Father’s House) and Cemetery.

The Presbytery is going to be a story building to host the Parish priest and his assistant, the Rector of the Minor Seminary, the Spiritual Director of the Seminary and the Parish offices. The parish cemetery needs some tender loving care and maintenance. LECUDEM USA supported these projects with the sum of $1,000 (500,000 CFA)

Fotabong Parish


Fotabong Parish Cemetery

Atullah-Ntse Nchenated Road project in Upper Lewoh.

This road links Lewoh Fondom through Nguondeng to Dschang. A chain foot caterpillar opened the road from Njenabang to Atullah in January 2017 using resources contributed by the Upper Lewoh Development Association. In this first phase we spent close to 4.5million CFA francs.

The second phase of the work requires the hiring of an overhead loader and a truck to throw laterite and put gutters on the road to make it passable all seasons. LECUDEM USA this year supported this project with the sum of $1,000 (500,000 CFA).


The Lewoh community in Yaounde is in the process of constructing a multipurpose cultural complex in Yaounde designed to have among others, a museum for the display of cultural artifacts, a hall, leaving rooms and an office. They are currently in the decking phase of the project and LECUDEM USA this year provided LECUDEM Yaounde with a financial support of $2,000 (1,000,000 CFA).

The Lewoh Community multipurpose cultural complex in Yaounde


Community labor on the site by members
Community labor on the site by members


The then branchPresident, Fondungallah Nico Presenting the giant structure to Nyatemeh
Nyatemeh & the national exco hail the effort of Yaounde branch






Lewoh Cultural & Development Meeting Developing Lewoh

The first flight of LECUDEM-USA-0624-27/2016 landed in Columbus, OH last night heralding the holding this weekend of the Organization’s 2016 Biennial Conference. The flight, from the Douala International Airport in Cameroon brought along His Majesty the Atemangwat of Lewoh, Patron of the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting. The Conference opens on Friday June 24 with the Atemangwat of Lewoh presiding.


The Atemangwat of Lewoh arrivesLECUDEM, the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting in the United States is poised to show-case Lewoh (and through it, Lebialem) culture, traditional and culinary exhibitions, cultural displays, and generalized celebration during a three-day jamboree.

His Majesty, the Atemangwat of Lewoh received an enthusiastic reception in Columbus last night Columbus in what promises to be a groundbreaking Conference. Apart from being His Majesty’s maiden visit to the United States, Columbus, Ohio 2016 will shine the light on what this North American of the Lewoh Cultural and Development Organization is doing to leverage development initiatives in the Kingdom. Working in sync with the Mother Organization, LECUDEM-USA intends to raise funds for projects in the healthcare, cultural (Lemo’oh), and social domains in the Lewoh Kingdom.

As delegates to the biennial Conference converge on the Buckeye State, early projections indicate that this will be LECUDEM-USA’s highest attended biennial Conference since its incorporation as a not-for-profit organization. The projections also show that the heavy turnout at the three day event will bring delegates from Canada and Cameroon in particular, as well as from Europe. Sons and daughters of Lewoh from the four corners of the United States are, of course, flocking into the Buckeye state with different cities striving to outsmart each other with the number of delegates.

LEWOH CULTURALThe presence of their King apart, this LECUDEM-USA conference, also happens to be happening in an election year. In fact, the current executive and board of this North American branch has served for the last eight years with very little changes to the faces and personalities. Current President, Barrister Nkemajiawung Fondungallah has been at the helm piloting the organization to its present status with more than 500 registered members concentrated mostly in the DMV/New Jersey/Atlantic coast corridor of the United States but also in Houston, TX, Minneapolis/Saint Paul, MN, Boston, MA, Chicago, IL, Atlanta, GA and Phoenix, AZ.

The decision to hold this biennial Conference in Columbus, OH was reached during LECUDEM-USA’s Family Reunion in Dayton, OH last year. Since then the National Executive and a Conference Planning Committee have worked relentlessly to ensure success this weekend. In that light, the organization is proposing a wide-ranging agenda that will not just include celebration and merrymaking but include debates, the exhibition of Lewoh/Lebialem cultural artifacts, dances, culinary art, and sightseeing. A Conference Magazine goes to press Thursday night and will carry advertisements, information about the Conference, Lewoh, and bits and titbits from here and there.

The venue for the conference is: Comfort Inn North Conference Center
1213 East Dublin Granville Road, Columbus, Ohio 43229.
Tel: 614-885-4084 ext. 303

Lewoh Kingdom Gears Up For Its 2016 Cultural Festival

The National President of the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting (LECUDEM) Dr. John Nkemngong Nkengasong has confirmed that the 2016 Lewoh Cultural Festival will hold at Anya from the 17th to the 19th of March. The National President’s confirmation of the Festival date is contained in media handouts and postings to all sons and daughters of Lewoh in Cameroon and in the Diaspora.

According to the communication, this year’s Cultural Festival, dubbed “Bechi Begeh” (come let us showcase our traditions) will, among other things feature a fundraising for the construction of the Lewoh Cultural Complex (the Lemo’oh Lewoh).

Consequently, the National President calls on “all branch presidents and special committee presidents” to “take particular note” and mobilize members accordingly.

Dr. Nkengasong further calls on all sons and daughters of Lewoh and branch executives to “circulate this information to all Lewoh sons and daughters, friends and well-wishers” at home and in the Diaspora.

Pursuant to decisions taken at an enlarged National Executive Committee Meeting in Douala last October, all sons and daughters of the Kingdom are expected to make contributions toward the realization of the Lewoh Cultural Complex, the “Lemo’oh Lewoh.” The National Executive Meeting categorized sons and daughters of Lewoh into ten groups, each contributing a given amount for the project. Such contributions range from CFA 5,000 francs minimum to CFA 200,000 francs and above (maximum).

While branch presidents have been tasked with compiling, collecting and submitting their manpower lists and sums due for the project to the General Secretariat, it is expected that the branches would speed up the collection and quick dispatch of the funds to the Treasurer. Concurrently, appeal letters are being addressed to friends of Lewoh and other dignitaries to solicit funds for the project.

Meanwhile, the programme of the three-day Lewoh Cultural Festival (Bechi Begeh Lewoh) shows that activities would kick off on Wednesday (Angong) with the gathering of all sons and daughters of the Kingdom. A cross-country race and an ecumenical church service would start the day of Thursday (Aseih) before the Patron of the Lewoh Cultural and Development Meeting (LECUDEM) and Paramount Ruler of the Lewoh Kingdom, Nyatemeh Fotabong Lekelefac, formally launches the Festival. The launching ceremony would feature the “Nteuh” dance in the esplanade prepared for the purpose, as the “Lefem” “talks” in the Royal Grove. An enlarged National Executive Meeting is expected to hold from 4:00 p.m. as the Kingdom retires for the day.

Day three (Friday Alung) of the Festival will feature a meeting of the General Assembly of LECUDEM, a traditional dance competition, and an all-night “Abanda” and a display of Lewoh folklore in the Nweh dialect.

Saturday (Ankoah, a traditional Sunday in Lewoh) is expected to start with a carnival of traditional displays, an art exhibition, a mini-agro-pastoral show, the second phase of fundraising for the Lewoh Cultural Complex (the Lemo’oh Project), and entertainment.  An all-night gala is expected to draw the curtain on the 2016 Lewoh Cultural Festival – an avenue that would have enabled Lewoh to showcase its culture and traditions in this “Bechi Begeh” rendezvous.

Hope for Health BD & Heart to Heart International

On Thursday March 13, 2014 we moved some of the supplies from our headquarters at Fuafeh’s to the District Hospital. We had been planning this mission to coincide with the Anyoutah Lewoh but as Providence will have it, this mission was a necessity. As we arrived Lewoh, we got news that the community has been without a doctor for months. The resident doctor of the Lewoh is married to the resident doctor of Alou and so she lives in Alou. She has been on maternity for who knows how long. How our people have been fairing without a doctor for months still baffles my imagination and bares testimony to the fact that God has been working and continues to work over-time here.

Medical MissionAs our pick-up truck approached the hospital, it was bustling with people from the main grounds to the entrance and on the sides and inside of the building. News had spread like wild fire of our arrival and people had camped out as early as 7:00 am. As we settled in , a motor-cycle pulled up and the gentleman who alighted from it, introduced himself as Dr. Fossouo Deffo Emmanuel. Dr. Fossou Deffo is the resident doctor of Alou hospital and husband to the resident doctor of Lewoh who is on leave. We were happy to hear that he will be assisting the team.

With the assistance of the medical staff of the hospital, we were able to set up a reception table and three rooms for the doctors. Our lab technician settled into the laboratory with the nurse and the resident “pharmacist” and midwife setup station in the hallway ready to dispense medications. The process went as follows, a medical staff called the patient’s name from a heap of  hospital books that were on a desk, the patient is directed to one of the doctors for consultation; if the doctor determined that further tests were needed, the patient was sent to the laboratory; the patient returned to the doctor for diagnosis and prescriptions. With prescriptions in hand, the patient then comes to the pharmacy table to receive supplies of medications. With the process in motion, I decided to take a walk around the hospital. The doctor’s residence that we had worked hard to renovate and equip with a water system toilet seats uninhabited. The maternity ward that we also worked hard to realize seats unused because the contractor, one of Lebialem’s paramount rulers, I was told, did not build it to specification. The current maternity ward is still in the state I met in 2009. How mother and child have gotten out of here alive after delivery only God knows.

Medical MissionThe malaria test kits we were to get from Buea were expired so they were not brought to Lewoh. We however did get the HIV test kits. The doctors nevertheless did malaria tests at the cost 500 frs with the test kits that we bought from the hospital’s supply. At 3 pm the team had not had lunch. The abeh nchi that had been prepared by Mami Monica at Nkemateh’s had to be transported to the hospital for the doctors to have lunch. After consultations resumed, I hurried down to GTTC Lewoh to attend the LECUDEM Executive meeting. I returned at 9 pm to find the team still at work dispensing medications using a touch light as the lighting at the hospital did not extend to our make-shift pharmacy. After a delicious dinner from our hostesses, the team hit the main square to join in Cameroon’s favorite past-time– beer drinking and dancing.

Submitted by Nkemajiawung Fondungallah