Anglophone Kondengui detainee cries for help after torturous years in pretrial detention

Germaine Dzenjoh is one of the hundreds of Anglophones arrested within the context of the crisis in Cameroon’s North West and South West regions.

Arrested and jailed since 1st December 2017 at the Kondengui Central Prison in Yaounde, she has not only maintained her innocence, but insisted that she was arrested arbitrarily.

“More than 20 armed men came to my job site at about 6:30pm. They intimidated me with their guns, slapped me, took my hand bag containing my purse, my phones and money, then took all the data processing accessories at my job site, handcuffed me and whisked off to the police station at Bota, where they asked me to identify some boys i didn’t know” Germaine testifies.

The policemen later took her to her house under similar conditions and coordinated a search, taking what she says was over four hundred and ninety-two thousand francs CFA in cash, mobile phones and hundreds of thousands from her mobile money account.

“They also took away my personal documents in the house, and i have no idea where they ended up, since they were never handed back to me. From there i was blindfolded and driven to an unknown destination where i was locked up still blindfolded for three weeks” she testifies.

Accused of sponsoring separatist fighters, her ordeal was yet to begin she says. “During the first week, I was asked to identify a group of boys said to be Ambazonians… I explained to the interrogators that i operated a business which included money transaction (Mobile money) so my account was used by these guys to collect their money, but that i wasn’t a sponsor”.

After spending two months at the judicial police station where Germain and relatives allege she was tortured and asked to renounce separatists fighters, she was transferred to the Kondengui Central Prison on the 1st of December 2017 where I she has been till today.

“I have prayed and hoped that the mystery of the false accusations which led to my arrest be solved. I have hoped to reacquire my dignity, so i resume with normal life” laments the mother of a ten year old boy. Her lack of finances she adds has not made matters any better.

“My mother had to borrow almost two million francs CFA to secure my release, which was futile, and the money was never refunded. Now I am counting on everyone, every single noble hearted person out there … to say or do something.”

With her next hearing set for 17th July 2020 at the Yaounde Military Tribunal, Germaine says her biggest fear is to die in jail without getting justice. “I am barely a young woman and mother, who started off a small business to feed her family” she narrates.

Germaine is one of many Anglophone detainees that have fallen victim to the crisis. With thousands more dead due to no fault of theirs, the Biya regime remains reticent to providing a long lasting solution.

(C) Mimi Mefo Info

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