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Central Africa Human Rights Defenders Network

SUMMARY

Introduction………………………………………..………………………………………….3

The situation of Human Rights Defenders in Cameroon..................................................4

The situation of Human Rights Defenders in DRC .............................................................5

The situation of Human Rights Defenders in Gabon 6 The situation of Human Rights Defenders in Congo-Brazzaville........................ 7

The situation of Human Rights Defenders in The Central African Republic  ......................................................................................................8

The situation of Human Rights Defenders in Equatorial Guinea 8 The situation of Human Rights Defenders inChad…………………………...9

Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………....10


INTRODUCTION

Since the last forum held in October 18 to 22, 2011 in Banjul, Gambia, the situation of Human Rights Defenders in Central Africa had not make a breakthrough despite the openness advocated by Central Africa democratic states.

Also, the sub-region that experienced the fever of elections in 2011 and early this year, during this period, the Human Rights Defenders have worked under uncertain conditions, risking their lives.

this profession they chose is a job that requires a spirit of sacrifice which they are proud to carry and when they brave the difficulties in their daily lives without worrying about their families at the expense of justice.

We globally present this report by taking some concrete examples of defenders from different countries who pay the heavy price in the performance of their work.

I. Cameroon

II. Gabon

III. DRC

IV. Gabon

V. Central African Republic

VI. Equatorial Guinea

VII. Chad

 

 

In Cameroon

1. November 23, 2011: Mrs. Adeline Epossi, Director of the Centre for listening of the Association to Combat Violence against women (ALVF-Littoral) suffered of Harassment and Surveillance in Douala by an unidentified individual.

2. February 2, 2012: REDHAC was deeply concerned about wiretapping, kidnapping, threats of rape and murder of Madame Ngo Mbe Maximilienne, Executive Director REDHAC at Mamfe in the south-west of Cameroon .REDAHC wrote a press release questioning the authorities to take note of the situation and immediately action be taken to ensure the safety and physical integrity, moral and psychological wellbeing of Madame Ngo Mbe Maximilian and her family.

3. On February 10, 2012: the inhabitants of Touboro suffered inhuman and degrading treatment for writing to the President of the Republic denouncing the abuses against them, 13 youths were arrested and imprisoned in a cage of the lamida of Rey-Bouba .It was a six-page document, entitled "Joint Statement Touboro" signed by 1190 Youths . on December 29, 2011, the "Collective of young outraged the department of Touboro, denounced the grabbing of their liberty by religious authority traditional and Rey-Bouba. "Here at home in the Cameroon of 'Baba', we must not only work hard to satisfy our hunger, but in addition, we are treated like slaves seeking freedom," tell of the signatories.

4. Since February 23, 2012: Two Human Rights Defenders of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and, Transgender) namely Anne Marie and Josephine Mayaky Mandeng live in a state of insecurity. REDHAC reminded the government of Cameroon that the association Alternatives Cameroon is an association legalized since 2006, and whose actions are intended to defend human rights and provide care and health services to those at-risk groups include homosexual, REDHAC calls on local authorities and national tolerance and non-stigmatization of homosexuals.

5. Miss Mbiapa Mbenda glwadis Linda journalist Aurore Plus, after the publication of an article No. 1387 of February 8, 2012 entitled "as a fake" about the trial of Michel Thierry Atangana Abega suffered intimidation and death threats . Mbiapa Linda has received calls from strangers on the morning of Friday, February 10, 2012. The REDHAC asked the Cameroonian authorities to ensure freedom of expression and independence of journalists exercising their profession.

6. March 14, 2012: The Human Rights Defenders Network in Central Africa (REDHAC) has learned with dismay the arrest and arbitrary detention of Theophile Nono member of the association M-PAC, which deals with farmers in the western region of Cameroon in Bafoussam by police of Mobile Intervention Group (GMI) who arrested him before returning to police headquarters. His arrest came while Mr Nono Theophile was pursuing Takam (farmer) who had snatched up signs and posters with which our colleague denounced the unjust exploitation of labor which the farmer is guilty, he and his parents beat and injured him.

7. Mr. Meyo Enoh Mass, unsuccessful candidate for the presidential election on October 9, 2011 was arrested in Cameroon on November 22, 2011 at Nsimalen Central Airport, and held in a cell of the gendarmerie at Bertoua (Eastern region-Cameroon) while returning from a trip to Singapore.

After the arrest of Mr. Meyo Enoh Mass, he was transferred in secret, and unknown to anyone in the cellars of an infected cell gendarmerie Bertoua (Eastern Region-Cameroon), where he will undergo torture and other inhuman and degrading treatments Thanks to the investigation of the newspaper "le jour " published in December 19, 2011, the National Community learns that he is locked in a dingy basement of the Force Bertoua. A month after his arrest Dec. 22, 2011, he was introduced to the public, following a press conference at police headquarters in Bertoua, like a common highwayman who robbed by an armed robbery a kilograms of gold without further explanation. It is unknown where and when the theft was committed.He was , thereafter, transferred to the Central Prison Kondengui (Yaounde).

REDHAC called on the Cameroonian authorities for his immediate and unconditional release, and ensure his protection and his psychological and physical integrity.

8. Douala on March 13: 6 defenders of ADDEC Association (Association for the Defense of Human Rights, Students in Cameroon, the following named Herve Nzouabet, Bayemi Andre, Jessie Bikoko, Tchaleu Barthelemy, Owono Nicaise, And Njouonkou Soulemanou were arrested in the Obstetrics and Gynecology Hospital of Ngousso around 10 oclock and detained at the General Delegation of National Security (DGSN) while protesting to support Miss Vanessa Tchatchou, the young woman whose baby was kidnapped in the same hospital.

9. On 30 March 2012, police officers in the town of Maroua, Far North region of Cameroon, disrupted a peaceful rally organized by the Movement for the Defense of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (MDDHL), and arrested its president, Mr. Math, and 14 other members of the organization who took part in the event. The human rights defenders had been mistreated during their arrest and detention before being released the same day.

A few days before the arrest, Abdoulaye Math issued a press release accusing the public prosecutor, Mr. Mamadou Hismaïla, some of these substitutes and some police officers, beyond the limits of their authority with impunity. MDDHL then held rallies during which the contents of the press release was read publicly.

The REDHAC demand a strong resolution calling on the government of Cameroon to meet its commitments concerning the protection of defenders of human rights as stipulated in the Declaration of Kigali and Grand Baie.

 

The Republic Gabon

1. Harassment, intimidation, threats and press campaigns slanderous and defamatory to discredit lawyer Paulette Oyane Me-Ondo, Human Rights defender and Legal adviser of REDHAC by the press itself is emerging as being close to the power and advocate for the political regime. A press campaign has been orchestrated and accusing him of preparing an emergence state and dragging in the mud. By allowing such practices against a defender of Human Rights, The Gabonese government violates the provisions of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders signed since 1998 which obliges them to protect Human Rights Defenders.

2. Intimidation perpetrated against Mr. Zachary Myboto, President of the National Union, Opposition party dissolves. Consistently, people traveling in unregistered vehicles, therefore unidentifiable, prowling around his home and are spreading the rumor that weapons are stored there. The aim is tomake people believe that Mr. Myboto is preparing a coup. The Gabonese State by so doing violates individual freedoms of Mr Myboto.

3. Mr. Gael Moutsiengou a young man of 28 was stabbed in a bar a few months ago by a commando of armed Red Berets. The young man was killed by multiple stab without explanation or justification.This is an act of state terrorism, No to impunity.

4. On January 3, 2012: the newspaper Les Echos Du Nord was suspended for publication for two months, without any reason being served by the National Communication Council (CNC).

The Gabonese government thus undermines the freedom of the press while violating fundamental rights:

-The right to freedom of expression: Article 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples'

-The right to a fair trial

-The right to freedom of opinion, thought and conscience: Article 8 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples.

-The right to work and all his rights which are interdependent. It should be recalled that in June 2011, the newspaper “Les Echos Nord” had already undergone a similar suspension and its Publishing Director Mr. Désiré ENAME was kidnapped and detained by agents of the Judicial Police. Actions brought by the newspaper Les Echos Du Nord and Mr. Désiré ENAME are pending before the State Council for over six months without review. The Gabonese government thus violates the fundamental rights of the Newspaper “Echos du Nord” and that of Mr. Désiré ENAME: The right of access to justice and the right to a fair trial: Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.

5. On January 3, 2012: A private television called TV + has been banned from broadcasting for three months by the National Council of Communication, without having been heard or known.

The Gabonese government thus undermines the freedom of the press while violating the fundamental rights of TV +:

The right to freedom of expression: Article 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights.

The right to freedom of opinion, thought and conscience: Article 8 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' 6. Between November 24 and December 10: During elections, the opposition began a caravan to meet people of the nine provinces.

The caravan arrived in the Middle of Ogooué on November 24. A Lambarene, the Capital of this province, Mr. Pascal Lendoye Yama, Governor of the Province, the Opposition has refused to hold a meeting at the Independence Square is a public space.

The caravan arrived in the Province of Ngounie November 25. Mr. Michel MouguimA, Governor of the Province, the Opposition has refused to hold a meeting in place of celebrations Mouila which is a public space.

The caravan arrived in the province of Nyanga on November 26. Mr. Joseph Guebot Mbote, Governor of the Province, the Opposition has refused to hold a rally at Independence Square of Tchibanga which is a public space.

The caravan arrived in Upper Ogooué in November 28. Mr. Bertrand Moundounga, Governor of the Province, has banned the opposition to hold a meeting at the Independence Square in Franceville, which is a public space.

The caravan arrived in the Province of Ogooué Lolo December 1. Mr. Gaspar N'nang Ela, Governor of the Province, has banned the opposition held a rally at the Independence Square of Koula-Moutou is a public space.

The caravan arrived in the province of Ogooue Ivindo December 2. Mr. Ruffin Moutessayigoue, Governor of the Province, the Opposition has refused to hold a rally at Independence Square Makokou which is a public space.

7. January 11, 2012 :for claiming their award, the Students of the University of Libreville called Omar Bongo University, were forcibly expelled from the University under fire tear gas in violation of academic freedom and the right to Education is a universal human right.

REDHAC applies the forum to ask the African Commission on Human Rights and Peoples which will open on April 18, 2012 in Banjul by a resolution to condemn the tyrannical behavior of the Gabonese government against the right to freedom of expression and the right to freedom of association, Article 9 and 10 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights

Democratic Republic of Congo

Before the presidential election on November 28, 2011 we released statements calling on the authorities to let the defenders do their job properly. Unfortunately, we were working with OCDH Congo Brazzaville to organize the relocation of some advocates for some time in the DRC in Congo Brazzaville before the announcement of results, because their safety depended on it. (5 of our colleagues have benefited this expertise). The situation in DRC remains of considerable concern, human rights defenders are silenced. The warlords continue to terrorize the North and South Kivu. Rape of women are not far behind. Child soldiers recruited by those who fight for wealth is to be denounce and deplore.

REDHAC request the forum to adopt a strong resolution in support of our fellow human rights activists by requiring the State to the Democratic Republic of Congo to engage a firm public to take measures for the effective protection of human rights and the effective fight against the evils mentioned above.

 

Central African Republic

January 16, 2012: REDHAC was informed of the arrest of Ferdinand Samba, Director of Publication of the newspaper "The Democrat," Monday, January 15, 2012 in Bangui, in the Central African Republic following a complaint for defamation in the Court of Instance of Bangui by the Minister of State for Finance, Sylvain Ndoutingaï close to President BOZIZE.le REDHAC made a press release calling the Central African state to unconditionally release and ensure the physical and psychological integrity of the journalist Ferdinand Samba Director of publication of the newspaper "The Democrat". Other defenders are being targeted by authorities.

REDHAC applies to the forum to request the authorities of the Central African Republic to ensure the protection of human rights defenders in Central African Republic.

 

Equatorial Guinea

On February 23, 2012: the Human Rights Defenders Network in Central Africa (REDHAC) was deeply concerned by the arrest and arbitrary detention of Dr. Wenceslao Mansogo Alo, Secretary of Human Rights and Civil Liberties of Convergence for Social Democracy in Equatorial Guinea, arrested Feb. 17, 2012. REDHAC asked the Equatorial Guinean authorities to take all necessary measures to protect the physical and moral Dr. Wenceslao Mansogo Alo and all human rights defenders in Equatorial Guinea.

The REDHAC pleads with the forum to ask the government of Equatorial Guinea to commit publicly to include in its legislation the provisions for the protection of human rights.

 

In Chad

1. On December 23, 2011: REDHAC was appalled by the case of his colleague and advisor to the Board in Chad, Daniel Deuzoumbe Passalet who was arrested on December 19, 2011 in N'Djamena in Chad and detained arbitrarily in prison in Moussoro 300km north of N'Djamena, a prison reserved for convicts dead for "false accusation" for giving an interview to a radio.

He was released on December 30, 2011 to "benefit of the doubt" by the judge thanks to effective advocacy of Amnesty International and REDHAC. Since he left the prison, he has health problems and do not always feel safe.

2. Ndjamena, April 2, 2012: four years after the attempt to take hold of power by armed rebels and government repression that ensued, including the forced disappearance of political opponent, Ibni. Some organizations in Chad saw little concrete progress has been made by the Chadian authorities to implement the recommendations of the National Commission of Inquiry which had been reached with the responsible authorities in the numerous violations of human rights committed to following the rebel attack. While the Deputy High Commissioner to the United Nations Human Rights, Ms. Kyung-wha Kang, visited Chad, these organizations are calling on the government to do more and better, especially for bringing to justice perpetrators of human rights violations Rights, to reform the justice and security sector, and clarify the fate of Ibni Oumar Mahamat Saleh.En February 2008, the power of President Idriss Deby was threatened by the largest offensive of the armed rebel movements since he came to power in 1990: came from neighboring Sudan, the rebels besieged the presidential palace and Ndjamena. The price of a deadly offensive against-the Chadian regime, and repulsed the rebels launched a major operation of reprisals against those who, authorities said, would have supported the rebels: the ethnically close peoples of the rebels were targeted leaders of the political opposition were rounded up and held incommunicado, prisoners of war have disappeared. Violations of human rights perpetrated by government forces and their allies of the Movement for Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), including rape of women, have been singled out by the National Commission of Inquiry setting off as a result of international pressure to shed light on the "events of February 2008" including the disappearance of the main opponent of the regime, Ibni, and 136 prisoners of war still missing to date.

REDHAC pleads with the African Commission on Human and Peoples Right to demand through the forum to the Chadian government to revise its texts on inhuman and degrading treatment towards human rights defenders in Chad and shed light on the 13 recommendations made by the National Commission of Inquiry.

 

CONCLUSION

Roughly summarized the situation as experienced daily by the Defender of Human Rights in Central Africa, REDHAC hope through its strategy (advocacy, lobbying, questioning the government) to achieve its objectives of the Human Rights Defenders work in the quiet without worrying about rising to a dignity this risky job for the triumph of democracy and human rights as hoped by the African people

 

 

Douala, April 10, 2012

Executive Director

Ngo Mbe Maximilienne

 
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