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Cameroon: UN Security Council urged to demand accountability over Wazizi’s death

Members of the United Nations Security Council have been urged to demand accountability on the death of journalist Samuel Wazizi when they are briefed on the situation in Cameroon during their June 12, 2020 meeting with the UN Office of Central Africa (UNOCA).

Journalists Samuel Wazizi died on August 17, 2019 under military custody but the information was only revealed on last Friday, June 5 after pressure from several local and international bodies.

A spokesperson for Cameroon’s military, Cyrille Serge Atonfack said medical reports revealed Samuel Wazizi died of a severe sepsis and not torture as claimed in the media.

But according to Human Rights Watch, four Cameroonian and six international organisations are now calling on the UN Security Council to an independent, impartial and thorough probe into the death of the journalist.

“Failure to investigate and prosecute those responsible would violate Cameroon’s obligations to protect people from arbitrary detention and deprivation of life and to provide an effective remedy, the groups said,” HRW quotes the groups.

The report also stresses that Cameroon’s international partners and UN Security Council members should publicly raise concerns about the grave human rights abuses in Cameroon, including against journalists, political opponents, and human rights defenders. The Security Council should also take the long-overdue step of formally adding Cameroon to its agenda so that it can more closely monitor the situation there, Human Rights Watch adds in the report.

Published on 28.04.2020

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