Paul Biya, the current President of Cameroon, is not only a political figure but also a man with a rich personal life. He was raised alongside 7 other siblings by his parents, Etienne Mvondo Assam and Anastasie Eyenga Elle, who were deeply religious and harbored a strong desire for their son to become a priest. Nonetheless, his life took a different turn following his interest in politics. At present, the father of 3 is married to Chantal Biya.
From the lives of Paul Biya’s parents to his siblings, wife, and children, here’s all to know.
Paul Biya’s Parents Were Deeply Religious and Wanted Him to Become a Priest
Paul Biya’s parents are Etienne Mvondo Assam and Anastasie Eyenga Elle. Even though not so much has been established about them, records have it that they are both natives of Cameroon. Aside from this, they were deeply religious. His father was a devout Roman Catholic catechist, whose commitment to his faith and his role as a catechist shaped the religious environment in which Paul was raised.
Anastasie, Paul Biya’s mother, was equally devoted to her faith. She, too, played a significant role in nurturing Paul’s religious beliefs and aspirations. Her support for Etienne’s role as a catechist and her own involvement in religious activities created a strong foundation of faith within the family.
From an early age, Biya’s parents centered his upbringing on the teachings of the Catholic Church. Their’ devoutness served as a constant example for him to follow. They desire for their son to become a priest. Their hope for their son to enter the priesthood was not uncommon in the deeply religious families of that time. They saw the priesthood as the ultimate path of service to God and humanity, and they believed that Paul possessed the necessary qualities to excel in this vocation.
Their son, Paul Biya, also dedicated his early years to that path and was enrolled in a Catholic mission school in Ndem at the age of 7. It was while he was there that his French tutor found his work excellent and determined that he should become a priest. Following this, he was admitted to the Edea and Akono Junior Seminaries run by the Saint Esprit father. However, the young seminarian was dismissed from the Catholic school at sixteen.
Nonetheless, Paul pursued a different career path and explored various fields. He soon discovered his passion for politics and followed that path. This shift from his parents’ aspirations did not diminish their love and support for him. Paul would then serve as president for over 40 years, having previously been the prime minister of Cameroon from 1975 to 1982.
Biya Was Raised Alongside 7 Siblings
Paul Biya, the long-serving president of Cameroon, is not an only child. He was born on February 13, 1933, and was raised in Mvomeka’a, Ntem, French Cameroon (now Cameroon), alongside 7 siblings. Although information about his siblings is relatively limited and shielded from the public eye, we can shed some light on their names and the impact they had on Paul Biya’s life.
Among Paul Biya’s seven siblings, Regine Ngonda Mvondo Epouse Bidjang and Benoit Mondo Assam were two individuals who left a lasting impression on the President. Unfortunately, both Regine and Benoit have passed away, marking significant losses for the Biya family.
Regine, according to the Cameroon Postline, was a respectable, hardworking, and generous Christian mother. Much of her life was not recorded; however, she was married to Mr. Bidjang, and they had several children together, including Martin Bile Bidjang, who is the Chargé de Mission at the Civil Cabinet of the Presidency of the Republic. She passed away in 2020 at the age of 90 after suffering a protracted illness.
Benoit Mondo Assam, Paul Biya’s elder brother, was another sibling who played a significant role in the President’s life. Specific information concerning his life and achievements remains limited, but his position as an older brother likely influenced Paul’s upbringing and development. Unfortunately, Benoit’s death in 2012 marked a profound loss for Paul Biya and the entire family as they mourned the passing of a beloved sibling.
The remaining five siblings of Paul Biya—Pierre Meba, Justine Eyinga, Marie Mengue Mvondo, Elizabeth Mekou, and two unnamed siblings—remain shielded from the public eye, with limited information available about their lives.
The Cameronian Politician Paul Biya has Been Married Twice
Being a public figure, Paul Biya’s personal life is one area of his life that has also gained public interest. According to the records, he was first married to Jeanne-Irène Biya, a woman who became his partner sometime in the 1960s. Their union was one of love and companionship, and they shared many years together. However, tragedy struck in 1992 when Jeanne-Irène Biya passed away. Her death was a profound loss for Paul, which left him with grief and loneliness.
Two years after the death of his first wife, Paul Biya found love once again. In 1994, he married his second wife, Chantal Biya, and their marriage has endured for decades. They have also become partners in both personal and political spheres. Needless to say, she is the First Lady of Cameroon and has been very supportive of her husband’s political affairs.
He is a Father of 3 Children
Paul Biya and his first wife, Jeanne-Irène, did not have any children together. However, it is worth noting that Paul Biya adopted a child from one of his extramarital affairs while they were still married.
Since his marriage to Chantal Biya, Paul has been blessed with two children: Paul Biya, Jr., and Anastasie Brenda Biya Eyenga.
Frank Biya is the eldest and adopted child of Paul Biya. He was born in Yaoundé, Cameroon, on August 21, 1971, and he’s 52 years old at the moment. He managed to keep his private life from the public for several years and was only seen from afar in most of his father’s political meetings.
Frank was mostly known as a businessman and entrepreneur until most recently, when he showed interest in politics, and it is reported in some quarters that he would likely succeed his father at the end of his latest tenure in 2025.
Paul Biya, Jr.
Paul is the first child of Biya and his wife, Chantal Biya. Despite being the son of the longest-serving president in Africa, he has kept a very low profile, and not so much has been recorded about him. He was only captured on the news sometime in 2020, following his promise of 100 million frs to support coronavirus victims.
Anastasie Brenda Biya Eyenga
Anastasia is Biya’s youngest child and only daughter, and she has been in the spotlight following her father’s political affairs. As such, not much has been recorded about her early life, and it’s difficult to assert how old she is right now.
As for her career, she recently launched her own brand, “Bree Culture Inc. Shopping”. The brand would be focused on the sales of wigs and craft shows.
Aside from just being Biya’s daughter, she has also garnered attention for her big eyes, which are reportedly a defect from a disease that has no cure. According to the findings, the disorder causes hyperthyroidism, which is characterized by an overproduction of thyroid hormones. This can lead to changes in vision, eye irritation, and swelling of the tissue. In severe cases, it can also cause exophthalmos, which is the protrusion of the eyes.