One thousand five hundred and seventy-nine (1.579) deaths recorded in Cameroon as a result of violent events that violated human rights between January 15th, 2020, and January 15th, 2021.
Out of this figure, 44 people died in the course of remote explosions,370 in battles,68 in riots, and 556 in violent actions against civilians. Statistics presented Wednesday, January 3rd, 2021 in Douala by the platform Stand Up For Cameroon Human Rights Working Group.
According to Philip Nanga, national coordinator of Stand Up For Cameroon Human Rights Working Group, some situations in Cameroon presents a favorable ground for human rights violation.
“The war against Boko Haram, conflict in the North West and South West regions, the impact of conflict in the Central African Republic on Cameroon, the impact of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea on Cameroon and urban armed gangs,” he said.
The Human Rights Working Group equally decries the violation of civil and political rights, gender-based violence, violence against lawyers, journalists, political activists, and civilians while carrying out their respective activities.
As concerns conflict in the North West and South West regions of Cameroon, Stand Up For Cameroon Human Rights Working Group says at least 32 people both civilians and the military have been killed since the beginning of the year 2021. Away from that, others have been kidnapped, raped, subjected to gender-based violence, deprived of their rights to education, and other sorts of violations.
Presenting the report, Lemnwie Mercy a human rights activist and member of Stand Up for Cameroon states that there is a need for Cameroonians to take action to stamp out cases of human right violation in the country. Stating what needs to be done, Frank Esih, a member of the platform says government and separatists are the two main vectors of human rights violations in the Anglophone regions of Cameroon. The human rights activist says the government should stop the violation of human rights by assuring that the rights of detained people are respected, the right to fair judgment, and permit human rights groups to work without any form of intimidation.
Addressing fighters in the Anglophone regions, Frank Esih says they should lay their arms as violence has never been a solution to a problem, stop killings of people (state agents, civilians, and all other human beings), and make available those violating human rights for fair judgment.
In the face of all these, Stand Up For Cameroon has put in place a Human Rights Working Group with the main objective to defend human rights in Cameroon to have a balance of power between civilians and the state to reduce the number of human rights violations. Besides this, a monthly publication of cases of human rights violations in Cameroon officials of the platform say will provide a base for national and international advocacy on human rights violations in Cameroon.
According to Frank Esih, one of the first things they will champion is that of educating Cameroonians to know their rights and consequently know when and how to defend them.
Stand Up For Cameroon Human Rights Working Group says Cameroon’s National Commission for the Promotion of Human rights and Freedoms portrays enormous lapses in the fight for the respect of human rights in Cameroon by the state. The platform says reports of human rights violations in Cameroon presented by the commission are doctored by the state as the commission has an obligation to first submit the report to the state before publication.