Absent In The Dock: Where Is Cameroonian Journalist Samuel Wazizi? - ARREYB

Absent In The Dock: Where Is Cameroonian Journalist Samuel Wazizi?

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Since last year, no word has been heard about Cameroonian Journalist Samuel Wazizi.

The government in her usual style of silencing journalists, has kept Wazizi after he willingly showed up to be interrogated at the Muea Police station – with no iota of resistance.

There are fears that Samuel Wazizi has been eliminated as the court repeatedly fails to produce him for legal proceedings with no explanations. 

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Detained since August 2019, his court cases have been adjourned several times and the government has failed to give any explanation, even after his lawyers filed a habeas corpus and were told he would be in court for the following appearance.

There are high fears that Wazizi has been under severe torture by the Infantry Battalion which is said, by law, to have no investigative unit or detention centres. These fears even amount to his having been eliminated. His lawyers and concerned colleagues have been on a man hunt to police stations and prisons, yet no clue.

Samuel Wazizi is an orphan who grew to be the only bread winner of the family he lived with at the time of his arrest.

The pidgin newscaster is either eliminated or he has been secretly moved to the dangerous SED in Yaounde (as his lawyers suggest), where he may be under severe torture.

He was in custody because the separatist group, Ambazonia fighters set up a camp in his farm. Besides, he is also accused of spreading information from separatists Ambazonia fighters to threaten the population.

Despite refusing all allegations levied against him at the moment of his arrest, the police commissioner said he could not grant him bail because the administration of South West “was on the case closely”.

Several court sessions have past and the 21st Motorised Infantry Battalion of South West jurisdiction has failed to produce him for legal proceedings.

He is not the only journalist caught in the government net. Journalists like Paul Chouta, Wawa Jackson and a host of others are still languishing behind bars for their critical reports

With many journalists now scared of reporting, there are fears that the most critical stories in Anglophone regions will go unreported.

In a report we published last year, at least 8 out of every 10 journalists actively reporting on political issues and the Anglophone crisis face threats, torture, harassment and imprisonment for rightly using the media as the fourth estate to check government excesses in Cameroon.

But away from the surroundings of journalism and hard reports against government policies, there’s always a careful way to get a journalist from another side of the coin. The strategy is to silence a journalist through the brutal military even when they get into more social problems not related to their work.

Of course, the best possible response would be for the Cameroon government to stop engaging in practices that trigger the investigative cascade. Journalists won’t stop reporting, either from home or abroad where they go into exile

Government authorities should refuse altogether to do the wrong things and not interfere by allowing journalists to do their job as the fourth estate

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  Since 2017, we have staked our lives and time to provide tailor-made news reports to our readers from war zones and hot political rivalries in Cameroon - And we have done so for free. As a small online media now reaching over 100,000 monthly readers on all our platforms, we have to rely on hiring/paying members to help keep you all informed. We do this because we believe it is the right thing to do at this time in Cameroon.   We have received many comments from supportive readers asking how they can contribute. The best way is simply to support our online reporting by considering a measly sum for our team on the ground as little as $1. Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable for our future. Now you can make a donation to us, it only takes one click   Kind regards, Arrey

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We focus on reporting news, politics, press freedom and human rights stories ARREYB Media is quoted by BBC Monitoring, BBC Focus On Africa, British Council, Infinity Blog Awards USA, politicians on all sides, newspapers and happy ARREYB readers We speak truth to power, check government excesses and push for communities. Founded by Arrey Bate, Cameroonian Journalist, Blogger and Online Consultant ( contact@arreyb.com )

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