Civil Society takes a stand on Cameroon – calls on Patricia Scotland and CMAG Foreign Ministers to defend Commonwealth values
London, 26th September 2018 -The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) and 27 leading civil society organisations have called for Cameroon to be added to the formal agenda of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG). CMAG meets this week in New York and has the power to suspend Cameroon from the Commonwealth; it includes Secretary-General Patricia Scotland, and the foreign ministers of Australia, Barbados, Belize, Ghana, Kenya, Malaysia, Namibia, Samoa, and the United Kingdom.
Civil society is raising attention to indiscriminate killings, arbitrary arrests, detention without recourse to justice, torture, and asserts the Government of Cameroon to be in breach of the Commonwealth Charter, Latimer House Principles, and the Harare Declaration.
David White, CHRI’s London Head commented: ‘CMAG was set up to deal with serious and persistent violators of the shared principles, which is precisely the situation in Cameroon. This is a call from civil society for the the Secretary-General and CMAG to act in defence of the very values that bind our Commonwealth together.’
Notes to Editors
CHRI is an independent, non-governmental, non-profit organisation. It has offices in Accra, London, and New Delhi. For 30 years, CHRI has worked for the practical realisation of human rights across the Commonwealth. It is accredited to the Commonwealth, has special consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council, and observer status at the Commonwealth Forum of National Human Rights Institutions.
The other signatories to the submission were: African Centre for Democracy and Governance, Africans Rising; Afrika Youth Movement, All Party Parliamentary Human Rights Group (UK), Association for the Protection of Natural Resources in Cameroon, CIVICUS, World Alliance for Citizen Participation, Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa, Commonwealth Association for Health and Disability, Commonwealth Lawyers Association, Commonwealth Journalists Association, Crisis Action, Dominicans for Justice and Peace, East African Civil Society Organizations’ Forum, Freedom House, Friends of Assam and Seven Sisters, Institute of Commonwealth Studies, International Bar Association's Human Rights Institute, International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), Minority Rights Group International, Nouveaux Droits de l’Homme Cameroun, Public Media Alliance, Royal Commonwealth Society Cameroon, Soroptimist International: a Global Voice for Women, The Commonwealth Equality Network, Un Monde Avenir, United Nations Association – UK, and World Dynamics of Young People (WDYP) – Cameroon.