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Cameroon drops 'fake news' prosecution

Mimi Mefo and  her legal team
Équinoxe TV
Ms Mefo is a star presenter and head of English news at Equinoxe Television

Cameroon has stopped the trial of prominent Anglophone journalist, Mimi Mefo, who was accused of spreading fake news and terrorism after the intervention of President Paul Biya, her employer, privately-owned Equinoxe Television, has said.

It said the military tribunal had announced "a complete stop to the prosecution".

"The government commissioner simply reflected an instruction from the head of state, [President] Paul Biya,” the report said.

Ms Mefo is the star presenter and head of English news at the Douala-based media outlet that widely reports on the conflict in Cameroon’s two English-speaking regions, South-West and North-West.

She was detained on 7 November after reporting on the killing of US missionary Charles Wesco on the outskirts of the north-western city of Bamenda.

Mr Wesco’s family blamed the Cameroonian army for his murder.

Ms Mefo was released on Saturday after three days at New Bell Central Prison in Douala following pressure from local and international human rights groups.

She thanked supporters for standing by her:

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Cameroon: Abducted Bamenda schoolchildren 'released'

They were taken captive by armed gunmen on Monday morning
The 79 children kidnapped from a Presbyterian school in northwest Cameroon have been freed by their captors, according to one of the key figures involved in the negotiations for the release of the hostages. Reverend Fonki Samuel Forba  spoke to BBC Newsday.

(Picture: Parents await for news of their children at the school where 79 pupils were kidnapped in Bamenda. Credit: Reuters/Blaise Eyong)

Cameroon election fire story 'is fake news'

A rumour circulating on social media that the paper results of Cameroon's recent presidential election had gone up in flames has been dismissed as fake news by a government spokesperson.

"It's a gross fake!" said Information Minister Issa Tchiroma Bakary in a tweet, urging people not to share what he said was a fake document announcing the destruction of election paperwork in a supposed fire at the Yaoundé Conference Centre, known in French as the Palais des Congrès.

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It appears that the plume of smoke seen on Thursday above the hills of the Cameroonian capital was indeed from the Yaoundé Conference Centre, but what was inside it at the time was an exhibition promoting studying abroad in France - not electional materials.

The news was confirmed by France's Ambassador to Cameroon Gilles Thibault, who added that no-one was hurt in the fire that was started by a burnt fuse and thanked the fire services for their "quick and efficient response".

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