PREMIUM TIMES’ partner, the African Investigative Publishing Collective, has called for international solidarity to protest the internet blackout that is suffocating the southern Cameroon regions since January 22.
In a statement Thursday, the AIPC said the blackout has cut off one of its members, veteran investigative editor, Bisong Etahoben, in Cameroon, from its interactions and transnational investigative projects.
The group said the Internet blackout was intended to suffocate protests in Anglophone regions against the mainly Francophone elite.
The AIPC said it was adding its voice to “protest against this repressive act by Biya’s autocratic regime which stifles communication, press freedom, contacts between Cameroonians and their relatives in the diaspora, and working relations between journalists like Chief Bisong and international colleagues, not to mention online money transfers for international work projects such as ours and from Cameroonians in the diaspora.
“In view of the poverty that reigns in many parts of Cameroon, which the Biya government has notably failed to address during its decennia-long reign, this is adding injury to injury.”
The Cameroon government has justified the blackout with the argument that social media were being used by ‘people with evil intentions to propagate false information to threaten the public and create panic.’
The AIPC said the government’s claim “is as nonsensical as, sadly, familiar in a world increasingly pervaded by a disdain for facts.”
The AIPC also published a clip sent out by Chief Bisong Etahoben just before the blackout.
See Clip Below: