By Lisa Vives, Global Information Network
NEW YORK (IDN) — A prominent Cameroonian journalist was found dead this week with signs of torture near the capital Yaounde, five days after he was abducted by unidentified assailants, according to the National Union of Journalists of Cameroon and media rights advocates.
Martinez Zogo’s disappearance and death was a further sign of the perils of reporting in the African country, union members said.
The director of the popular Amplitude FM radio, was kidnapped on Jan. 17 by unknown assailants after trying to enter a police station to escape his attackers, according to media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF).
Zogo had recently been talking on air about a case of alleged embezzlement involving a public-sector procurement that benefitted a prominent businessman. He also sent a dossier to several institutions and media outlets about those allegations, according to those sources.
“Cameroonian media has just lost one of its members, a victim of hatred and barbarism,” Cameroon’s journalists’ trade union said in a statement. “Where is the freedom of the press, freedom of opinion and freedom of expression in Cameroon when working in the media now entails a mortal risk?”
The Minister of Communication with the Paul Biya government declared in a communique that journalists were free to carry out their work without interference.
But the NY-based Committee to Protect Journalists in a published statement called the recent abduction of Martinez Zogo “deeply concerning,” adding that “Authorities must take this case very seriously given Zogo’s recent investigative reporting, and ensure that those responsible for his disappearance are brought to justice.” [IDN-InDepthNews — 23 January 2023]
Image: Martinez Zogo had spoken on-air recently about a case of alleged embezzlement involving a media outlet with government connections. Credit: Africa24
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