Hate Speech, Xenophobia on the rise, preventive measures taken

It has become a routine for hatred, hate actions favouritism, tribalism, marginalisation and nepotism in Cameroon. Ethnic groups, races, religions, organisations have always had contrary views, fighting, domination as a result of their differences which has generally threatened national peace and unity.

Thus some members of the press, civil society actors, Non-Governmental Organisations, women and youth Associations representatives have expressed tear making situations causing Hate Speech and Xenophobia in Cameroon, proposing methodologies in combating the two societal ills threatening national peace and unity.

Xenophobia (it is an expression of perceived conflict between an ingroup and an outgroup and may manifest in suspicion by the one of the other's activities, a desire to eliminate their presence, and fear of losing national, ethnic or racial identity) and Hate Speech (abusive or threatening speech or writing that expresses prejudice against a particular group, especially on the basis of race, religion, or sexual orientation) are two situations which has put several groups, persons, organisations and others at locker heads.

Barrister Nico Halle

According to Barrister Nico Halle, he laments over the poor state and happenings in Cameroon despite it's beauty and natural resources because the citizens lack the spirit of patriotism.

"A big beautiful nation like Cameroon with a huge natural and human resources is a laughing stock because we are hypocrites, we are not patriotic, we lie a lot, and have no moral foundation on which we can build our nation. Nobody has the right to take the life of anybody on earth. This nation is at Cross roads and if we are pleaser we cannot build this nation. Look at the road from Babadjou to Bamenda, it's terrible and what has destroyed the fabric of this nation is fear of loosing appointments, positions, friendships and so on."

Taking into consideration the aim of the campaign being to identify the root causes of xenophobia and hate speech and to seek betters ways to address them, Bar Nico Halle encouraged all to be the solution of the problems faced by the country, and not the problems themselves and to uphold moral values.

In a discussion panel discussion held by The National Commission for the Promotion of Bilingualism and Multiculturalism, dubbed New National Campaign against Hate Speech and Xenophobia, June 17, 2021, chaired by HE Abouem A Tchoyi and Barrister Nico Halle, several loopholes have been spotted which if addressed will go along way to eradicate Xenophobia and Hate Speech the country.

Renowned journalists and Bureau Chief of Post news paper Chris Mbuwe makes it clear that the fact that officials including Ministers who propagate hate speech and are not punished there will come a day were more trouble will escalate from that. He also encouraged that the press should be well treated and not always left behind, relegated considering they are the fourth arm of the government.

Other issues raised which are causes of Xenophobia and Hate Speech included the limited number of persons being appointed into the public service by the government. The President of the country Paul Biya who has never addressed the nation on English which shows marginalisation of Anglophone Population, the Forces of Law and order intimidating the locals with the French language. Pointing accusing fingers to the minority population.

One of the most hard-hit aspect was the issue of Bamenda-Babadjou road and sports, entertainment. Other regions are either blessed with a training facility, a Stadium or both training facilities and stadia. Some with well tarred roads meanwhile the North West region can boost of none despite their participation in the Elite One and Two and a ring road into the region. This is a cause of favouritism which can burst into war. 

At the end of the discussions the emissaries promised to table all the worries raised, and called on all to spread the message of peace and love and to help combat Xenophobia and Hate Speech at various levels

"We will take back all the proposals made by the press to the Head of State, the commision will like all participants to continue doing the marvellous job they are doing and to carry to the quarters the message of peace, love, unity and justice so that we will all fight hate speech and Xenophobia" HE Abouem Atchoyi

"We have identified the ills, we have to build the foundation of love integrity, truth, for if there is no love there will be not truth. Hate speech emanates from frustration when people are stigmatised, marginalised, you can not get any kind worked from such people who are being down played, trampled upon because of nepotism, tribalism. We have taken note of all recommendations and note that this campaign is not only for the commision but requires all of us to think our differences and make sure that the ills that has destroy the peace of our nation be destroyed. Patriotism should be the word, we should shawn stigmatisation, tribalism, embezzlement, nepotism. Cameroon has all it takes for Cameroonians to be fine." Bar Nico Halle

Anye Nde Nsoh

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