Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Anglophone Crisis -- Human Rights Report Uncovers Cameroon’s Multiple Fair Trial Rights Violations Of Activists

The Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales, BHRC, has released a new report in which it revealed numerous violations of international law and fair trial protections in Cameroon’s ongoing prosecution of 28 people.

According to the report, Jodie Blackstock, BHRC’s observer who attended the hearings of Felix Agbor-Balla, Fontem Neba and Mancho Bibixy in April 2017 witnessed a number of serious breaches of the defendants’ fundamental rights to due process and a fair trial.

Going by the observers’ report, Cameroon’s use of the military tribunal despite the fact that charges listed did not fall under military law, violated the right to an independent and impartial trial.

The report also condemns the broadly-defined and imprecise charges, which do not specify which actions by the accused are considered to constitute criminal offences. Equally, the report stated that the lack of information to the accused, denied access to legal assistance and ongoing pre-trial detention since January 2017, with no decision made by the court on its lawfulness or the possibility of bail are all clear breach of fair trial rights.
Anglophone Crisis -- Human Rights Report Uncovers Cameroon’s Multiple Fair Trial Rights Violations Of Activists
Speaking on the observation made, Kirsty Brimelow, BHRC Chairperson said charging peaceful protesters breaches basic tenets of Cameroon’s international law obligations as well as its Constitution.

Going by the rights committee, if it transpires that laws designed for terrorist atrocities have been used to detain peaceful protesters, it is an abuse of those laws, and of the right to peaceful protest. To the group, denying detainees meaningful access to lawyers, or to the purported evidence supporting allegations against them, also breaches their legal rights and protections.

In the end, the BHRC urged Cameroon’s state prosecutor to urgently review the charges in these cases. “Due process and fair trial rights must be applied. Whilst charges are reviewed, all detainees should be released from custody or reasons for their detention examined and argued in full bail hearings.”

Copyright © Africa 24 News. All rights reserved. Distributed by Africa Metro Global Media ( To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, Click Here.

Africa 24 News publishes around multiple reports a day from more than 40 news organizations and over 100 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which Africa 24 News does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify Africa 24 News as the publisher are produced or commissioned by Africa 24 News. To address comments or complaints, Please Contact Us.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Contact Form


Email *

Message *