Cameroon Shuts Down Offices of VT affiliate Pan-African TV Channel
Yaounde (VT) After days of demonstrations, the Cameroon army has broken through the human barricade protecting free media. The Cameroon government at the request of the French Embassy has declared open war on media that has reported a story kept from the rest of the world; that France is Boko Harum and that the attacks in Cameroon have not only involved French weapons and explosives but have been carried out by French security officers as well.
The riots ensued when the army moved against the press who reported the government’s agreement to submit to demands from French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius who demanded that French nationals arrested for terrorism be released and allowed to return to France.
Any media organization that has reported the capture of French nationals, including 8 active serving DGSE officers captured inside Cameroon fighting alongside Boko Haram, has been banned. This includes VT Africa affiliates in both local broadcast, satellite and print media. Some journalists have been “disappeared,” others have had their passports seized and have to report to police stations daily, a task that has thus far entailed sitting on a bench from dawn to dark, followed by interview sessions with French security officials that is usually followed up by a trip to the hospital.
The Cameroon government has further banned, at the request of the French government, anyone who photographs French weapons captured from Boko Haram.
Additionally, 3 French nationals have been arrested in Cameroon for providing 60,000 Cameroon passports to Nigerians, thousands of whom are believed to be Boko Haram fighters. The French defense giant, Thales Corp., major political backer of French President Francois Hollande, has been identified as at the heart of this conspiracy. Thales was contracted by the Cameroon government to supply national ID cards but decided to expand the program to include taking down the Cameroon government.
Thales Corp. was accused of bribing South African President Jacob Zuma, bankrolling his takeover along with that nation’s descent into anarchy.
Afrique Media has not released an official statement but has condemned the forced termination of its in-country programming. The TV channel is still broadcasting to Cameroon but now from Malabo, capital of Equatorial Guinea.
Demanding respect for state order
Peter Essoka, acting president of the NCC, said Afrique Media insulted policies of some countries (France) that share diplomatic ties with Cameroon and defied a one-month suspension on broadcasting the government issued in June.
The NCC has sanctioned some 20 journalists this year. Some were told to report to police stations and others asked not to practice the profession for periods ranging from one month to six months after printing or broadcasting reports the agency said was overly critical of the government. Two journalists have been told not to leave the country.
Afrique Media apparently angered authorities with its reports on Cameroon’s war against the Boko Haram insurgency. (and its ties to France and ISIS elements) The channel suggested that since most weapons seized from the insurgents originated from France, Paris may be secretly supporting Boko Haram. (ah that)
After sealing the offices of the TV station in Yaounde last week, Cameroon’s military met stiff resistance when they attempted to do the same in Douala.
For three days, supporters of the channel surrounded the building and prevented the military from gaining access. Soldiers finally used batons and tear gas on Wednesday to clear the crowd and seal the offices.
From the Cameroon Daily Journal, August 1, 2015
3 Frenchmen Arrested For Issuing Over 60,000 Forged Cameroon IDs to Nigerians