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#BringBackOurInternet protests ongoing after Cameroon’s government shutdown Internet connection in English-speaking parts of the country

BellaNaija.com

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Protests have been going on in Anglophone parts of Cameroon after the government shut down internet connections earlier this year.

On January 18th 2017,  authorities ordered the country’s telecommunications providers to shut off internet connections to the regions of Northwest and Southwest – the English speaking parts of the country.

According to Aljazeera:

The internet blackout came after the government outlawed at least two Anglophone groups – Southern Cameroons National Council and the Cameroon Anglophone Civil Society Consortium – and arrested some of their leaders.

The groups had been pushing for so-called Ghost Town actions, in which they urge members of the public to stay at home and shops and businesses to shut.

The aim is to peacefully protest against what activists call the marginalisation of the English-speaking regions by government imposing the French language on their schools and courts.

Areas controlled by Britain and France joined to form Cameroon after the colonial powers withdrew in the 1960s.

As a result, the country now has 10 semi-autonomous administrative regions; eight are Francophone, while the Northwest and Southwest regions are home to approximately five million English-speakers.

Anglophones in the country have long complained that they face discrimination, saying that they are excluded from state jobs as a result of their limited French language skills.

They also complain that official documents are often only published in French, even though English is also an official language.

There are issues in the judicial sector as well.

The country’s legal system is largely based on French civil law, but English-speaking regions still operate under the English common law.

Cameroonian lawyers say that the government is sending French-educated civil law judges who do not understand English common law to their courts.

Anglophone Cameroonians believe that only a complete overhaul of the administrative departments in the country and an inclusive federal constitution can end their woes.

Cameroon had adopted a federal government system in the 1960s but this system was later dropped after a referendum.

Using the hashtag #BringBackOurInternet, protesters are prevailing on the Paul Biya led government to restore access to internet.

8 Comments

  1. Lauren

    February 4, 2017 at 3:59 am

    African Uprising, it’s about time, this is way over due, Every nation is riding up against corrupt politicians except the lazy African nations. Rise up.

    Next stop Zimbabwe, Equatorial Guinea, Angola etc

  2. Ankara

    February 4, 2017 at 5:58 am

    The Government of Cameroon is a sack of shit. There is real marginalization in that country. If you are English speaking life and uni ersity study get so tough for you. All documentation is in Yaounde where English speaking people can not understand the language. They say there is freedom of speech yet nkrmal conversation in a taxi or with others takes you to jail. Tje youth have decided. Let this old people give way to the African youth and see what the outcome will be. Enough is enough. Youth rise and take what belongs to you.

  3. Baby gal

    February 4, 2017 at 6:24 am

    It is very sad indeed. The French have kept Cameroonians in slavery for 55 years. If you go to Cameroon you wouldn’t believe that they have crude oil and other natural resources such as timber, nickel, cocoa and coffee just to list a few. Unfortunately, the corrupt government headed by the president Biya has kept the people handicap. Southern Cameroon which is the English speaking that have been oppressed,marginalized, abused,brutality tourtured by the arm forces and unlawful arrest just to list a few. The southern cameroonians have decided to overcome their fear to fight for freedom and resist injustice. There is no Internet services for 3 weeks in the English speaking Cameroon as part of the oppression by the regime, while French speaking Cameroon have been enjoying the Internet supply. How sad, Cameroonians have suffered under a dictator. Please Nigeria, reserve some refugee camps for us because fire is on the mountain!!

  4. sharon

    February 4, 2017 at 7:16 am

    African leaders are all the same!! Sigh

    • Adunnie

      February 4, 2017 at 10:52 am

      I tell you… Which kind Africa be dis??? Why do we have to endure suffering from these people?? So greedy, wicked, brutal and inhumane..

  5. duke

    February 4, 2017 at 9:55 am

    To say the English speaking part of Cameroon is being marginalized is an understatement. I was born and spent all my formative years in Limbe in souththern Cameroon before relocating to naija. The people are suffering,president Biya is an autocrat,the system is highly corrupt and tend to favour the French speaking part. You can even see their national team in the ongoing AFCON, how many players are anglophone? The southern Cameroon uprising is long overdue. And who blocks internet access in this age where most businesses are internet dependent? President Biya is sick!

  6. Nes

    February 4, 2017 at 1:07 pm

    On 23 Jan, Biya, without feedback from the Anglophones, ‘forces’ a bilingual commission. Few programs/policies have ever gone right with his administration and he thinks his idea of a Bilingual Commission designed to create equality or equity will do? Pfft!

  7. Lolarae

    February 5, 2017 at 8:12 am

    I think we blacks truly deserve racism we are inferior animals our thinking is next to apes take a look at this move for christ sake
    we lack ability to think encourage growth etc
    i pray we get colonized again by the white man

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