Categories
Judiciary Security/Insecurity

Buea: Police, Gendarmes Use Mass Arrest To Exploit Muea Inhabitants


Inhabitants of Muea, a locality on the outskirts of Buea, South West Region of Cameroon have been victims of frequent police and gendarme impromptu mass arrests popularly known as “calé-calé”.


One of those recently rounded up by the forces last Thursday, September 9, said dozens of young people are still at the Buea Central Police where they were arrested and kept.


Speaking to MMI, the victim who preferred anonymity, said he has spent more than FCFA 100,000 ($118) to bail himself from the police twice in the last two months.
“They called for me when they saw me and asked for my identity card. They then told me to enter their truck and we were taken to GMI. From there, we were taken to the Central Police Station. The cells were full and some of us were kept in the female cell. They passed our hands through a machine to see if we have ever held guns,” he said.


Although his hands signalled green, meaning he has not held a gun, he was locked up until Saturday afternoon, September 11, when he bailed himself with FCFA 37,000 ($43).


He said most of those kept in custody are people who did not immediately bribe officers when they were arrested and those who could give money were released before reaching the station.


Another inhabitant of the locality who survived the mass arrest told MMI that officers usually release people who can immediately bribe them with money and those who have no money are taken to the station and sometimes detained until when they are bailed.


“They took my Identity Card and asked me to follow them to the station. After moving a little distance, they said I should give them something (money) for them to let me go. But when I hesitated and preferred to be taken to the station. They then said I should go. I don’t understand why they should always come around harassing people and collecting money from others,”

Narrated a victim of mass arrest in Buea


During last Thursday’s arrest, this inhabitant says the officers said, while arresting him, that they were instructed to take everyone aged below 40.
He said the Anglophone crisis has made life difficult, still, the uniform officers are making matters worse by collecting from people the meagre income they make from their daily struggles.


On Monday, September 14, he says, tens of boys were again arrested by patrolling police officers and most of them bought their way out by paying FCFA 10,000 each.
Mass arrest (calé-calé) has been a common moneymaking tool for the military since the escalation of violence in the Northwest and Southwest regions.


The police and Gendarmes usually use this as a pretext of tracking separatist fighters from among the population, yet, many have wondered if this method has helped the security situation as some of those arrested usually bribe officers and get released, without any note on whether they are a threat to peace or not.


However, relative calm has returned to Muea, which had been one of the most insecure areas in Buea as gunshots are now less rampant, says an Inhabitant.


Most road-side businesses have reopened and life is gradually normalising with the population, mostly farmers, resuming work at their once abandoned sites.

By: Tata Mbunwe

(C) Mimi Mefo Info

Categories
Judiciary Security/Insecurity

EXCLUSIF! A Mbanga, un détenu torturé à mort!

L’affaire est passée sans grand bruit et pourtant Titus Bessong, un détenu de la prison secondaire de Mbanga dans le département du Moungo est décèdé dans la nuit du 04 au 05 septembre dernier. Quelques jours plutôt, le garçon de 22 ans avait profité d’une séance de corvée collective dans l’arrondissement de Mombo dans le même département pour s’évader.

Pris en chasse par les gardiens de prison, il sera ramèné au sein du pénitencier où il subira de graves tortures corporelles d’après des sources dignes de foi. L’infortuné  en succombera. Sa dépouille est déposée à la morgue de l’hôpital de district de MBANGA. Les autorités de la ville pour leur part évoquent un cas d’étouffement subi par le défunt. D’après nos informations, une enquête est conduite sur cette affaire

Categories
Cameroon Judiciary Politics

Fâché, Le Maire scelle la recette municipale, Douala 5è

Un nouveau développement dans la crise à la Mairie de Douala 5è. Hier le Maire Richard Nfeungwang a décidé de sceller la recette municipale. Le chef de l’exécutif municipal soupçonne des détournements de deniers publics imputables à la receveure municipale. Une mesure de représailles sous fond de graves tensions entre les deux personnalités communales.

En rappel les agents de la municipalité sont à plus de 02 mois sans salaires. La receveur municipal s’opposant catégoriquement à tout décaissement. En mis Août dernier, c’est le 6è adjoint au Maire de Douala 5è qui avait bloqué la recette municipale pour dénoncer l’indifférence de la patronne des lieux.

La médiation du préfet du Wouri n’a pas mis fin à cette discorde qui dure au sein de la municipalité.



		
Categories
Judiciary News

Entretien exclusif avec Me Dominique Fousse: Ce que la justice nous a confié sur l’affaire Lydienne Taba

L’avocat au Barreau du Cameroun et Porte-Parole des Avocats commis par la famille de la défunte Lydienne Taba fait le point sur la plainte pour “violences sur femme enceinte et assassinat” déposée le 03 septembre dernier au Tribunal Militaire d’Ebolowa contre le sous-préfet de Loukoundje.

MMIF : Que vous a dit le Commissaire du Gouvernement près le Tribunal militaire d’Ebolowa au dépôt de votre plainte ?

Me FOUSSE : Rien de particulier parce que le dépôt d’une plainte se fait comme dans tout autre dossier. Elle a reçu notre plainte qui était effectivement une plainte pour violences sur femme enceinte et assassinat puisque d’une échographie du début du mois de juillet il ressortait que elle (Lydienne Taba, Ndlr) était enceinte de plus de 06 semaines. Donc à la date de son assassinat elle était enceinte. La plainte a été reçue.

Nous avons cherché à savoir s’il (le sous-préfet, Ndlr) était détenu. Elle nous a répondu de façon laconique qu’il était placé sous mains de justice. Ce qui laisse comprendre qu’il y a quand même une chape de plomb parce que nous savons qu’à la date d’aujourd’hui les délais de garde à vue sont largement expirés.

De deux choses l’une: où il est placé en détention (le crime qu’il a compris impose qu’il soit détenu). Ou il est sous mains de justice – sous mains de justice ça peut vouloir dire qu’il a été mis en liberté provisoire avec garant sous caution. Dans ce type de crime, il n y a pas de garant il n y a pas de caution, on est placé en détention. Il y a plein d’interrogations sur une éventuelle détention.

On a bien compris des discussions que nous avons eues avec Madame le commissaire du gouvernement que ce dossier est hautement signalé. Ça veut dire que elle-même elle doit s’en remettre à sa hiérarchie militaire notamment le Ministre de la Défense.

Je pense que c’est l’une des raisons pour lesquelles la famille est inquiète parce qu’elle veut que justice soit rendue à leur fille et a décidé de prendre des avocats notamment nous. 

Me Fousse


MMIF : Est-ce qu’on peut penser que c’est la grossesse de Lydienne Taba qui était la pomme de discorde entre elle et son amant ?

Me FOUSSE : On ne peut pas supputer. C’est les enquêtes qui révéleront les causes. Bien évidemment on pourrait penser que ceci expliquant cela. Mais on n’en a pas la preuve pour le moment. On attend terriblement les résultats de l’enquête. Nous verrons à ce moment-là mais c’est dans le cadre de l’enquête et l’enquête remontera au niveau du commissaire du gouvernement qui la contrôle et puis on passera par le stade de l’instruction

MMIF : Est-ce vous comprenez les inquiétudes de la famille dans cette affaire? La famille semble pessimiste.

Me FOUSSE : Je crois qu’il ne faut pas être pessimiste. Je pense que l’enquête se fera normalement. Il faut non plus penser que la justice ne fera pas son travail. La justice est là pour faire son travail. Les conditions devant le tribunal militaire peuvent inquiéter. Parce qu’on peut arrêter la procédure à tout moment. Un ordre peut être donné pour que la procédure s’arrête. Ça peut être donné même par le Chef de l’État. Donc c’est peut-être tout ça qui inquiète un peu la famille qui veut quand même savoir ce qui s’est passé réellement le 25 juillet. Pourquoi le crime a été commis. Est-ce qu’il s’agit réelle d’un accident. D’ailleurs ils ont dit le moment du deuil que si c’était réellement un accident ils seraient prêts à pardonner mais maintenant les conditions sont quand même un peu nébuleuses et ils veulent surtout que justice soit rendue à leur fille. 

MMIF : Quel est l’état d’esprit de la famille et quels sont vos espoirs dans cette procédure que vous engagez?


Me FOUSSE : Tous les avocats espèrent que tout sera conduit dans les règles de l’art. Que toute la procédure respectera les dispositions du code de procédure pénale. Mais c’est un dossier très sensible pour la famille. C’est un dossier normal qui ne devrait pas être conduit différemment. Donc nous espérons que l’égalité des citoyens devant la justice sera appliquée. Que Monsieur Ebanga Franck Derlin sera jugé normalement sans complaisance et sans faveur. S’il n’est pas coupable il n’est pas coupable. S’il est coupable il doit en payer le prix notamment par une peine qui sera décidée.

MMIF: Merci Me de nous avoir accordé cette interview.

Me FOUSSE : Il n’y a pas de quoi.

Categories
Judiciary Opinion

Cameroon – The Government that punishes the victim, hails the villain


Bad things really do happen, often to people who have done nothing to deserve them.

It’s understandable that people who face one difficulty after another may start to believe the world is out to get them.

This may be the case for many a Cameroonian that is not lucky enough to be born with a silver spoon in their mouth.


In 2015, Cameroonian authorities said they were cleaning the country’s payroll of 10,000 dead or fictitious employees, who cost the treasury some $12 million (CFA 6.648 Billion) every month.

In 2018, 25,000 new fictitious civil service salary earners were uncovered. In 2020, 10,000 more were said to have been filtered out of the corrupt system.


Cameroon’s Minister of Finance, Louis Paul Motaze said after the 2018 census of employees, the government realized it was losing hundreds of millions of dollars every year to people claiming salaries as state workers.


In 2020, Motaze adds that some of these persons had died but their deaths went unreported. Others had abandoned their posts, or were drawing double salaries with the help of fellow workers.


Just like in previous years, authorities claim they have been removing such workers from the state’s payroll but it appears to be a mere rhetoric.


The Minister of Public Service and Administrative Reforms, Joseph Anderson Lé claimed in 2018 that the census of state workers was very efficient because police tracked down some 8,000 workers who were living in Europe and America.


Barrister Akere Muna, founder of the Cameroon chapter of the anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International, says corruption is widespread in Cameroon and targeting “ghost workers” will not entirely solve the problem.

“Cameroonian civil servants do not live from their salaries. They live from a system where they have put toll gates everywhere. You cannot get people who are thieves to look over thieves.”


Barrister Muna believes that whistleblowing is the key to fighting graft, but that many people are afraid to come forward as they feel it is too dangerous or ineffective.


But while many receive salaries for no work done, many, such as those working in the war-ravaged Northwest and South West Regions have had their salaries suspended.

The decision is being implemented by administrators who themselves are out of their duty stations or only go there occasionally using sophisticated military artilleries.


The cruel news came like a bombshell.

MMI

That the salaries of 100 civil servants in the crisis-hit Northwest Region have been suspended; is gruesomely preposterous. The victims were accused of absenteeism.


Given that civil servants are mostly targeted by Separatist fighters, such a decision is seemingly drenched in prejudice and scapegoat smear.

Otherwise, the authorities are morally unable to understand the deadly plight of civil servants in the Northwest and Southwest Regions that are virtually ruled by Separatist fighters.


The separatist fighters have kidnapped, tortured, maimed and killed many civil servants. The erstwhile Divisional Officer for Batibo, Namata Marcel Diteng, the former Regional Delegate of Social Affairs, Animbom Aaron Akiabom, the Vice Principal of GHS, Belo, Chiakuo, were in the inaugural list of the victims of mayhem by the Separatists.

They lost their lives because of insecurity and their families are the ones bearing the brunt for their brutal exit.


So, how can the government suspend the salaries of civil servants who have been pushed out of their offices by insecurity? That illegal and illogical decision is one of the mothers of gaffes in the crisis. For, it further victimises people who live in constant fear – the legitimate fear of the separatist fighters.


That is why observers are wondering if the authorities are wallowing in some kind of myopia which makes them mistake symptoms for causes, and victims for foes.

Which administrator does not know that the life of a civil servant in the two Regions is a jeremiad of fear and a running tale of frustration, stress, and harassment from the Amba boys? Which Governor, SDO or DO, does not know that the crisis-ravaged Regions have become a paradise for the survival of the most deadly? Which authority does not know that the bullet and dagger army of Amba boys go to schools and offices in search of civil servants in many areas in order to brutally torture them to death?


Thus, civil servants who are scampering away for safety know so well that only fools will rush in where angels are forbidden to tread. The authorities’ cavalier dismissal of the people’s security concerns, is a supreme act of violence on some of the most hard-hit victims of the Anglophone Crisis.


It is a cruel irony that the administrators who are signing the suspension of the salaries of the civil servants, move in armoured cars and are usually protected by cordons of security and military elements.


The Governor, for instance, lives in prodigal security luxury. Besides the armoured cars at his disposal, he is guarded by a phalanx of specially trained bodyguards and a trigger-happy armada of heavily armed soldiers. Added to this, is his bullet-proof wares.


Even with this security measures, the Governor still has difficulties going to certain areas. Recently, his convoy was attacked in many areas on his way to Fundong in Boyo Division. Is this the very person that is coercing civil servants whose security is not guaranteed to dare the Amba boys in the field?
The decision to suspend the salaries of the civil servants is a cruel act that brutalises the victims while the villain goes scot-free. The lethal potency of such a decision should not be underestimated, because, it is akin to sending the already stressed civil servants to their early graves.


Indeed, that decision that smacks of sinister insensitivity to the peoples’ agonising plight, has turned the days of its victims into daze and their nights into nightmares.
By their overzealous and spineless show of loyalty to Yaoundé, the administrators are stoking the fires of the crisis by virtue of such gigantic insanity.


They are creating more frustrations, tensions and recriminations. The suspension of salaries of those people, has an over-bearing effect on many other people that depend on them. That vicious decision has put the civil servants in those areas in a catch-22 situation. For, they have to choose between death and losing their salaries and eventually their jobs.


That barbaric act could just help to swell the ranks of the separatists for many young frustrated civil servants could join the armed groups. That gubernatorial decision is cruel and its consequences barbaric. It is a conscienceless decision that smacks of insensitivity to the people’s agonising plight.

Read more: https://mimimefoinfos.com/nearly-500-schools-directly-affected-by-violence-in-nw-sw-trade-unions/

As if that is not enough, some overzealous Mayors in the Southwest Region have added corpus to the sufferings of the business people in their municipalities in the name of fighting the ghost town operation.

It would appear the devil has come in-between the Mayors and their people because the sealing of the business premises of people who respect ghost town out of fear, is sheer wickedness.

If these Mayors should stop going around with a cordon of soldiers in order to prove to the world that there is security in their areas as they claim, one may begin to understand their stance. Without such actions, the continuous victimisation of citizens already devastated by the war, is nothing but demonic.


They further stoke the yearning for elected Governors and other officials who would be sensitive to the plight of the people and not only dance to the caprices of an over-centralised government in Yaoundé. It fires a burning desire for Federalism in the ordinary Anglophone Cameroonian.


Indeed, in Cameroon, the government punishes the victim and hails the villain.

Mimi Mefo Info