By Mua Patrick, December 6, 2016
Cameroon Journal, Yaounde – State funded National Commission on Human Rights and Freedom, NCHRF, has indicted the Cameroon Police and Gendarmes for severely violating human rights in Bamenda and Buea following recent street demonstrations by lawyers and students in the two cities.
In a release signed by the commission Chairperson, Chemuta Divine Banda on December 2 and titled “statement of the National Commission on Human rights and Freedoms on the recent human rights concerns in Cameroon” the commission said they have noted with dismay the human rights violations in the frame work of events which have occurred in Cameroon within the last two months.
Citing various peaceful demonstrations to include the strike action by Anglophone lawyers that began October 11, that of Anglophone teachers’ trade unions of November 21 and the strike action by students of the University of Buea on November 28, the rights commission said the numerous human rights violations were regrettable.
“These human rights violations include torture, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment, the right to life, the right to education, access to justice, fair trial, and freedom of expression” the statement read in part.
“We invite the opposing parties in these developments to exercise restraint and a sense of civic responsibility. They should avoid violence and engage in dialogue for lasting solutions to the issues concerned. Every effort must be made to avoid the use of language and actions likely to provoke anger and incite violence,” added the NCHRF statement issued Friday.
The Commission has called on Government in the search for solutions to carryout proper investigation on the issues raised and the human rights violations beginning with the loss of life and torture.
They have also maintained that verification must be carried out to ensure that infiltrators do not come in to ignite violence in order to defeat the aims of planned peaceful demonstrations which are allowed by law.
The NCHRF, the statement announced, is carrying out its own independent investigation and shall possibly organize a public inquiry in line with its mandate which allows for dialogue and concerted action for the promotion and protection of human rights using mediation and conciliation between the parties.