“We Hereby Ask RFI: To Stop Interfering In Cameroon's Internal Affairs

Below is a declaration by the Minister of Communication on October 26, 2018 in Yaounde.

“The Cameroonian Government is shocked and outraged by the treatment that RFI has been making for some time of postelectoral news in Cameroon, which, as everyone may have realized, is an attack on the honour and dignity of the will of the Cameroonian people, as expressed on 7 October 2018 and proclaimed by the Constitutional Council on 22 October 2018.

The Government demands respect and consideration for the will of the Cameroonian people who, throughout its existence, has never accepted the diktat of a tutelary power when it comes to deciding on its future or fate. Cameroon is a rule of law, and as such, by virtue of its sovereignty, it does not accept any foreign interference, wherever it may come from.

Throughout the electoral process that has just ended, RFI has distinguished itself by a blatant lack of professionalism, characterized by a systematic refusal to observe elementary professional rules of fairness and balance. An illustration of this bias is the skillful shift RFI made by attributing to the entire episcopate of Cameroon, the personal opinion expressed by the Archbishop of Douala, His Lordship Samuel KLEDA, on the conduct of the presidential election in our country.

Moreover, it is common ground that the statements made in this case by this prelate are not based on any truthful argument that is likely to convince everyone. We therefore strongly denounce the way in which RFI echoes NGOs and other activists of all kinds whose fraudulent and hostile behaviour against our nation is common place.

President Paul BIYA has never waited for instructions from anyone to make dialogue the preferred means of resolving the problems facing Cameroon, particularly those in the North-West and South-West regions.

We hereby ask RFI to stop interfering in Cameroon's internal affairs in this way, and to stop giving a voice to warmongers who want to instrumentalize public opinion, with a view to provoking an insurgency and, ultimately, destabilizing our country. The Government commends the maturity and lucidity of the Cameroonian people who have invested themselves in ensuring that this election takes place in a transparent, calm, serene and bloodless manner. As you are aware, Cameroon is a country of freedoms.

Throughout this electoral process, and as usual, freedom of expression and press freedom were respected. No restrictions were imposed on the various media, including the Internet. The conduct of the electoral dispute was broadcast live and in full – an unprecedented event in the world – on various radio and television stations and was therefore followed throughout the world.

We denounce RFI's obvious bias in the treatment of post-election news, which on this occasion has designed, programmed and has been broadcasting incriminating programmes, thus trampling on the popular will.

To the prophets of doom who advocate chaos in Cameroon, they should understand that they have hit the wrong target. We are all the more surprised by this editorial position of RFI, in as much as, consistently, French diplomats have always assured the Cameroonian Government of France's support.”

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