The IPI global network is shocked and saddened by news that journalist Anye Nde Nsoh was shot and killed by separatist fighters on May 7 – the third journalist to be killed in Cameroon in 2023. Authorities must initiate a swift, thorough, and transparent investigation into this incident and bring all perpetrators to justice.
Nsoh, who was a journalist with The Advocate newspaper, was shot and killed while in a bar in Bamenda, a city in the northwest of Cameroon where separatist military groups have fought to succeed from the central government since 2016.
According to a video published online, a leader of the separatist group claimed that Nsoh was killed because he was mistakenly identified by the separatist fighter’s unit as a commander in the Cameroon army. In the statement, this leader said that the commander frequently visited the bar where Nsoh was killed and that the fighter responsible for this gruesome act regrets this incident.
“It is with a heavy heart that I heard of the demise of Anye Nde Nsoh, three hours after our editorial meeting that night with him participating online from Bamenda”, Tarhyang Enowbikah Tabe, publisher of The Advocate, told IPI. Tabe said he covered sports, culture, and society, and is unsure of why anyone would target him for his journalism. “This is another case of an attack on journalists and we are taken aback and call on the state to hold responsible suspected culprits’’, he added.
In January this year, journalist Marinez Zogo from Amplitude FM was abducted and killed. A few weeks later, Ola Bebe’s body was also found close to his home in Mimboman, a suburb of Yaoundé, the capital city of Cameroon. Ola Bebe was a priest and journalist who worked with several media houses in Yaounde.
‘’IPI is deeply saddened to hear of the killing of Anye Nde Nsoh, who is the third journalist to be killed in Cameroon since January of this year. While it is yet to be determined whether he was killed because of his work as a journalist, his death puts a spotlight on the shocking spate of violence against journalists in Cameroon since the start of 2023”, IPI Director of Advocacy, Amy Brouillette said. ‘’We therefore urge authorities to take immediate action to ensure all journalists in Cameroon can work freely and safely. Authorities must also demonstrate their commitment to protecting journalists’ safety by conducting swift and transparent investigations into these killings, which are threatening the environment for press freedom and democracy in Cameroon.”