CONSTITUTION OF THE ASSOCIATION OF PROFESSIONAL TRANSLATORS AND INTERPRETERS OF CAMEROON (APTIC)

PREAMBLE

Professional translators and interpreters of Cameroon, meeting in a constituent general assembly in Yaounde on 10 September 1994,

CONSCIOUS

Of the important role they are called upon to play in Cameroon, Africa and the world,

CONSIDERING that

– Translation and interpretation have become permanent, universal and necessary activities in the multilingual world of today;

– Despite the various circumstances under which translation and interpretation are practised, they must now be recognized as distinct and autonomous professions,

NOTING

That translation and interpretation promote understanding between peoples and co-operation among nations by facilitating communication and the dissemination of information across linguistic frontiers,

RECOGNIZING

The paramount importance of state bilingualism as a unifying force for Cameroonians,

DESIRING

In common with members of other professions, to formally lay down some general principles inseparably linked with the profession of translator and interpreter, particularly for the purpose of:

  • Stressing the social function of translation and interpretation,
  • protecting the rights and defining the duties of translators and interpreters in order to ensure the quality of work, improvement in standards as well as deal with other matters concerning translation and interpretation,
  • Defining a code of ethics for translators and interpreters,
  • Improving the economic conditions and the social climate in which they practise, and
  • Contributing in this way to the recognition of translation and interpretation as distinct, independent, autonomous, universal, permanent and necessary professions,

Adhere to the following Constitution to serve as a guiding principle for practising the profession of translator or interpreter:

CHAPTER I
NAME, HEAD OFFICE AND OBJECTIVES OF THE ASSOCIATION

Name

Article 1:

(1) An Association of Professional Translators and Interpreters of Cameroon (APTIC), hereinafter referred to as the “Association”, is hereby set up.

(2) The Association shall be apolitical and shall be governed by the law on freedom of association.  It shall bring together all professional translators and interpreters in Cameroon.

Head office

Article 2: The head office of the Association shall be in Yaoundé. It may be transferred to any other town in Cameroon by decision of the General Assembly.

Objectives

Article 3: The objectives of the Association shall be to:

(a) Bring together all translators and interpreters;

(b) Promote professional ethics among members;

(c) Protect the professional interests of its members;

(d) Ensure good quality translation and interpretation;

  1. e) Encourage proper use of the country’s official languages;

(f)  Contribute to the training of competent translators and interpreters;

(g) Contribute to the drawing up and implementation of an official language policy and legislation on bilingualism;

(h) Foster relations with professional organizations with the same objectives.

(i) Encourage members to socialize among themselves, as provided for by a special instrument addressing APTIC’s social activities.

CHAPTER II
MEMBERSHIP

Article 4: The Association shall comprise active, associate and honorary members.

 

Active members

Article 5:

1)  An active member shall be any person who:

(a) is holder of a certificate in translation or interpretation recognized by the Association and who has effectively been practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation for at least three (3) years; or

(b) is holder of a first degree and who has effectively been practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation for at least five (5) years, and is admitted by the General Assembly on the proposal of the Admissions and Disciplinary Board after a test as provided for by the Internal Rules and Regulations; and

(c) Has paid the prescribed annual dues.

(2) However, subject to the provisions of sub-paragraph 1 (c) above, participants at the constituent assembly who fulfil one of the following conditions may be admitted as active members:

(a) Be holders of a certificate in translation or interpretation and be effectively practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation;

(b) Be holders of a first degree and be effectively practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation for at least three (3) years.

(3) Only active members shall speak and vote at the General Assembly and shall be voted into the Bureau of the Association.

(4) Active members shall have the right to append the acronym or any other distinctive symbol of the Association to their names.

(5) Any person who has been recognized as active member and who, for one reason or another (promotion, secondment), is compelled to cease practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation, shall continue to enjoy active member status provided that he continues to pay the prescribed dues.

Associate Members

Article 6:

1)  An associate member shall be any person who:

(a) is holder of a certificate in translation or interpretation recognized by the Association and who has effectively been practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation for less than three (3) years; or

(b) is holder of a first degree and who has effectively been practising translation or interpretation as a main occupation for a period of less than five (5) years but more than or equal to two (2) years;  or

(c) Is holder of a certificate in translation or interpretation recognized by the Association and who is effectively practising translation or interpretation as a secondary occupation; and

(d) Has paid the prescribed annual dues.

(2) Associate members shall take part in all meetings of the Association in an advisory capacity but may not be voted into the Bureau of the Association.

Honorary members

Article 7:

(1) Retired active members shall become honorary members.

(2) The General Assembly may confer the title of honorary member on any non-member who has brought honour to the profession, has exceptionally contributed to the promotion of the profession or has particularly distinguished himself in practising the profession.

(3) An honorary member shall not be expected to pay the membership dues; he shall attend meetings in an advisory capacity but may not be elected to any post in the Association.

Admission into the Association

Article 8:

(1) Translators and interpreters practising in Cameroon or abroad who agree to comply with the Constitution of the Association and the decisions of its organs may be granted membership of APTIC.

(2) Admission into the Association shall be subject to sponsorship by two (2) active members in good standing, to the fulfilment of the conditions laid down in Articles 5, 6 or 7 above and to the fulfilment of the relevant formalities prescribed by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

Article 9:

(1) Professional translators and interpreters who are active members of APTIC shall be registered on a roll which shall be kept up to date by the Executive Bureau.

(2) The said roll shall be submitted to Government services, national and international organizations and other professional associations. It shall comprise two divisions: Division TR (Translators), and Division INT (Interpreters).

Loss of membership

Article 10: Membership shall be lost:

(a) Through death;

(b) Through resignation;

(c) Through striking off the roll decided by the General Assembly under the conditions provided for by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

CHAPTER III
ORGANS OF THE ASSOCIATION

Article 11:

  • The Association shall be made up of “statutory” organs and subsidiary organs
  • The statutory organs of the Association shall be the General Assembly, the Executive Bureau, the Admissions and Disciplinary Board, the Appeals Board and the Standardization and Publications Board.
  • The General Assembly exclusively may set up a subsidiary organ.

The General Assembly

Article 12:

(1) The General Assembly, made up of all the members, shall be the supreme organ of the Association. Its decisions shall be taken by absolute majority of paid-up active members present and voting.

(2) The General Assembly may validly deliberate only when 50% + 1 of paid-up active members are present.

Role of the General Assembly

Article 13:

(1) The General Assembly shall:

(a) Adopt and amend the Constitution and the Internal Rules and Regulations of the Association;

(b) Define and orientate the general policy of the Association;

(c) Adopt its agenda on the proposal of the Executive Bureau;

(d) Examine the progress report presented by the President on behalf of the Executive Bureau, the Financial Secretary’s statement of accounts and the audit report;

(e) Approve the accounts for the previous year;

(f) Adopt the draft budget;

(g) Admit, suspend, strike off the roll and rehabilitate members;

(h) Elect members of the Executive Bureau and the various Boards;

(i)  Determine the rate of annual dues on the proposal of the Executive Bureau; and

(j)  Approve management of the Executive Bureau.

(2) The Association shall meet in ordinary session once a year at a venue and on a date to be determined by the Executive Bureau, which shall duly inform members in writing at least thirty (30) days in advance.

(3) The Association may be convened in like manner in extraordinary session by the President upon decision of the Executive Bureau or at the written request of at least a third of the paid-up active members. Invitations to such extraordinary session, which shall specify the object therefore, shall be sent to all members fifteen (15) days prior to the date of the Assembly.

(4) During the annual General Assembly, the Association shall elect two (2) auditors from among its members.

The Executive Bureau

Article 14:

(1) The Association shall be administered by an Executive Bureau comprising a President, 1st Vice-President, 2nd Vice-President, a Secretary-General, an Assistant Secretary-General, a Treasurer, a Financial Secretary, an Organizing Secretary and a Communications Secretary.

(2) The Bureau shall convene the General Assembly and shall prepare an agenda which it shall submit to the General Assembly.

(3) Members of the Executive Bureau shall be elected for a two-year term. They shall be eligible for re-election.

(4) The voting procedure shall be determined by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

Article 15:

(1) The Executive Bureau shall meet twice a year and whenever convened by its President or at the behest of a third of its members.

(2) Decisions of the Bureau shall be taken by absolute majority. In the event of tie, the President shall have the casting vote.

(3) Two thirds of members of the Executive Bureau shall be required for deliberations to be valid.

The President

Article 16:

(1) The President shall:

(a) Represent the Association in court and in all civil matters;

(b) Present the budget prepared by Executive Bureau;

(c) Authorize the expenditure of the Association;

(d) Present the progress report of the Bureau to the General Assembly;

(e) Preside over the General Assembly and meetings of the Executive Bureau;

(f)  Protect the professional interests of the Association and its members.

(2) The President shall be assisted in his duties by two (2) Vice-Presidents. Where he is unavoidably absent, the Vice-Presidents shall deputize for him by order of precedence.

Vice-Presidents

Article 17:

(1) The Vice-Presidents, one of whom shall be a translator and the other an interpreter, shall assist the President in his duties. Under the authority of the President, to whom they shall be advisers, they shall examine all matters and follow up all measures relating to translation or interpretation, depending on their specialization.

(2) Where the President is a translator, the 1st Vice-President shall be an interpreter and vice versa.

The Secretary-General

Article 18:

(1) The Secretary-General shall run the secretariat of the Association, especially during meetings of the General Assembly and the Executive Bureau.

(2) He shall keep all the documents of the Association.

(3) He shall be assisted by an Assistant Secretary-General

The Treasurer

Article 19:

(1) The Treasurer shall collect the funds and carry out expenditure in accordance with the procedure laid down by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

(2) He shall countersign the cheques of the Association.

The Financial Secretary

Article 20:

(1) The Financial Secretary shall keep the records of the Association in accordance with the procedure laid down by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

(2) He shall make financial records available to the Auditors.

(3) He shall present a financial report to the General Assembly.

The Organizing Secretary

Article 21: The Organizing Secretary shall ensure the organization of the activities of the Association.

The Communications Secretary

Article 22:

(1) The Communications Secretary shall publicize the activities of the Association.

(2) He shall preside over the Standardization and Publications Board.

Auditors

Article 23:

(1) Two Auditors shall be elected annually by the General Assembly and shall have access at any time to the accounts and financial records of the Association.

(2) They shall present an audit report to the Annual General Assembly of the Association.

(3) They shall not be part of the Executive Bureau.

Admissions and Disciplinary Board

Article 24

(1) The Admissions and Disciplinary Board shall comprise ten (10) members (five translators and five interpreters) who shall be elected by the General Assembly.  The Board shall elect its Bureau at its first sitting.

(2) The Chairman of the Board may co-opt one or more non-members of the Association on account of their competence to sit in an advisory capacity.

(3) The Admissions and Disciplinary Board shall:

(a) Examine applications for admission for active or associate membership in accordance with the procedure laid down by the Internal Rules and Regulations and shall report to the General Assembly;

(b) Study cases on professional ethics that may be submitted to it by the General Assembly or, in case of emergency, by the Executive Bureau following the procedure laid down by the Internal Rules and Regulations, and report to the General Assembly;

(c) be empowered to judge and settle any professional dispute between members of the Association according to the procedure laid down by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

Other Boards

Article 25: The duties of the Appeals Board and the Standardization and Publications Board shall be defined by the Internal Rules and Regulations.

CHAPTER IV
MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Annual Dues

Article 26: The rate of annual dues and deadlines for payment shall be determined each year by the General Assembly on the proposal of the Executive Bureau.

External Relations

Article 27: The Association may:

(a) Be affiliated to any professional organization with similar objectives;

(b) Maintain friendly and professional relations with national and foreign terminology centres as well as other sister organizations.

Financial Year

Article 28: The financial year of the association shall begin on 1 January and end on 31 December.

Internal Rules and Regulations

Article 29:

(1) Internal Rules and Regulations drawn up and approved by the General Assembly shall lay down rules governing the functioning of general assemblies, the Executive Bureau and the Admissions and Disciplinary Board.

(2) They shall lay down the conditions under which the Association may maintain relations with similar organizations, as well as the procedure for admissions, striking off the roll, accounting, discipline and settlement of disputes.  They shall, if need be, cover any other issue not provided for in the Constitution.

Amendment of the Constitution

Article 30: This Constitution may be amended only on the proposal of the Bureau or of at least one third of the active members of the Association.  The proposal to amend shall be submitted to the Association in an ordinary or extraordinary general assembly. It shall be communicated to members within the time provided for in Article 13 (2) and (3). The proposal shall be adopted by a two-thirds majority of active members present.

Resources

Article 31: The resources of the Association shall come from members’ annual dues, sales of its publications and proceeds from its activities.

Dissolution

Article 32: In case of dissolution of the Association, the General Assembly shall decide on the disposal of its property.

Entry into Force

Article 33: This Constitution shall enter into force immediately following its adoption by the constituent general assembly.