Southern Illinois University Carbondale Daily Egyptian Diversity News Archive (Southern Illinois University Carbondale)
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New Nations Yearn to 'Catch Up’
New Nations Yearn to 'Catch Up’
Item IDEgyptian19620105new.tif
TitleNew Nations Yearn to 'Catch Up'
AuthorDaily Egyptian
Descriptionranking Congolese official ‘ho visited SIU recently showed the sense of urgency driving the newly-freed nations.
Original Publication SourceDaily Egyptian
Date1962 January 5
Digital File Format.TIF (Tagged Image Format)
Digital File PublisherSpecial Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Rights StatementAll copyrights held by Southern Illinois University Carbondale. For permission to reproduce, distribute, or otherwise use this image, please contact the Special Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Phone: + 1 (618) 453-2516. Email:
CollectionUniversity Archives: Daily Egyptian Diversity Articles Index
TranscriptNew Nations Yearn to 'Catch Up'

A ranking Congolese official ‘ho visited SIU recently showed the sense of urgency driving the newly-freed nations.
Antoin Efomi, 34, the director of research and planning for the central government's ministry Of social welfare stopped here to study the community development program operated by SIU.
He was completing a five- month study of social programs, both public anti private, in the areas of community development, housing, social services to needy and social worker training.
Carbondale was his last stop before returning to Washington and flying back to the Congo before Jan. 1.
Efomi, who helped Antoine Gizenga organize a teachers' union before independence, expressed the "we must hurry to catch up" attitude in talking to Richard Franklin, cllreetor of the Community Development Institute.
Community Development institute, a no Robert E. Knittel, director of community Development services.
He wanted to know just how quickly he could earn a degree in corn in unity developni ent here. Efomi, who had spent 15 years in social welfare work in the Congo, explained his problem.
"I have 15 years experience but how will people listen to me if I have no degree?"
The tan-skinned official complained even if he wrote a textbook on community development the Congolese government couldn't give it any weight because Efomi doesn't have a degree.
He was disappointed when Franklin said it takes 18 months' work here under the graduate program.
Efomi explained "we can take maybe six months or a year. But we dont have time to spend more than a year training people. We need them now."
One of the major prohlems facing the infant Congolese government is solving the problems of the rapidly growing cities.
City Populations Exploding
Efomi, both in talks with officials of the community development program here and with members of the SIU African studies group, explained why the cities were centers of exploding populations.
Government figures show about 45 percent of the Congo population is between 16 and 21 years old. These teenagers are leaving the villages in droves and flocking to the cities despite the dearth of jobs, food, housing and their lack of education.
Why are they leaving the villages?
Efotni explained the villages, although very organized, are suffering from spiritual, economic and educational frictions. The old systems are breaking up and the new systems are not being accepted fast enough.
Another reason for the youth leaving the villages is compulsory road work. The natives work from 6 am, to 3 p.m. carrying loads of stone and dirt on their backs for miles to fill swamps.
They are paid two cents each day for this work. Efomi explained a loaf of bread costs 20 cents. Cigarettes are two cents each.
So the young people go to the city in hope of making more money, Efomi explained.
The sudden pull-out of the Belgiums has nearly paralyzed the Congo economy, he said. "The
products are still produced, but there is nobody to sell them.'' he explained.
Efomi, who worked for several years under the Belgiums, feels there will be no permanent split in the Congo between Katanga.. which is much like the area here, he said, and he Central Government.
No Comment on Communism
The official, who began studying English last spring, ducked questions about the reported pro-Communist learning of Vice Premier Gizenga and other members of the Congolese government.
SPEAKING WITH HANDS as well as lips, Congolese official Antoine Efomi, director of research and planning for the ministry of social welfare, conferred recently with SIU community development officials

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