Freedom House is alarmed by the closure of 11 media outlets in Cameroon on September 6. To justify the closings, the National Communications Council accused seven newspapers, three radio stations, and one television station of disrespecting “ethics and professional norms.” The shutdown demonstrates Cameroon’s waning support for free and independent media sources, despite such guarantees laid out in its 1996 Constitution, and Freedom House condemns this clear violation of press freedom.
Freedom House is deeply disturbed and outraged by the torture and killing of Cameroonian LGBTI activist, Eric Lembembe and urges authorities at the highest level to condemn violence against the LGBTI community and to take appropriate measures to bring those responsible for this sadistic murder to justice.
Freedom House is concerned for the safety of Cameroonian human rights defender, Maximilienne Ngo Mbe, after she has received numerous threats to her life and the lives of her family. Freedom House calls on Cameroonian authorities to protect Ms. Ngo Mbe and denounces this harassment.
The case of political prisoner Michel Thierry Atangana in Cameroon will reach a critical juncture tomorrow as the prosecution plans to rest its case with regards to new embezzlement charges against him. The hearing is an opportunity to withdraw the charges as opposed to handing the case over to the judges.
Freedom House released an analysis of democracy in sub-Saharan Africa showing that the region has experienced notable increases in freedom over the past generation, although more setbacks than gains were seen in 2006.
Freedom House’s program in Cameroon aims to promote broader citizen participation in political processes and presidential and parliamentary elections. Freedom House works to achieve this through support to civil society in their election monitoring, civic education and voter mobilization activities.