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World News of Thursday, 11 October 2018

Source: bbc.com

Cameroon opposition in court demanding cancellation of polls

Cameroon Polls The applicants before the top court were main opposition leader, Joshua Osih

State broadcaster, CRTV, have confirmed reports that a number of opposition parties had approached the court over the October 7 presidential elections.

CRTV said in a tweet on Thursday, four days after the vote, that a total of 17 applications had been made to the Constitutional Court demanding partial and in some cases total cancellation of the vote.

They confirmed that among the applicants before the top court were main opposition leader Joshua Osih of the Social Democratic Front, SDF, and Maurice Kamto who led an opposition coalition that involved Akere Muna, a famed lawyer.

October 10: Kamto camp wants probe into CRTV report

Local media in Cameroon are reporting that the camp of opposition contender Maurice Kamto on Wednesday afternoon held a press conference in the capital Yaounde amid deployment of heavy security.

Kamto’s spokesperson among other demands called for a probe into the false report carried by state broadcaster, CRTV. Kamto’s camp said the TV and ministry responsible for accreditation needed to be probed.

CRTV had carried a news item on Tuesday alleging that Transparency International, TI, had given high marks to the October 7 process. TI in a statement denied the report.

Other issues he raised were that: There was a ploy to blame violence on Kamto, that there was growing tension in the country. He also flatly denied that Kamto was being financed by politicians held in prison over an anti-corruption crackdown, Operation Epervier.



Kamto, leader of a two-party alliance declared on Monday, barely twenty-four hours after the vote that he won an emphatic victory. Government slammed his announcement describing it as “irresponsible, illegal.”

The spokesman clarified in later reports that Kamto had only claimed victory based on figures and projections. “Maurice Kamto did not proclaim himself president, he claimed victory, it’s not the same thing,” Olivier Nissack reportedly said.

October 9: State TV accused of fake observer report

Cameroon radio and television, CRTV, the state broadcaster has been exposed by international rights group Transparency International, TI, over a report that the group’s observer team had ‘blessed’ the conduct of the October 7 presidential polls.

CRTV shared a video that purported to have observers with TI but the group in a press statement said it had not sent a team to observe the polls.

“Transparency International confirms that it has no international election observation mission in Cameroon. A recent television report featuring individuals described as working for Transparency International is false and untrue,” a statement read.

It is the most significant development surrounding the polls since opposition candidate Maurice Kamto declared that he had won a clear mandate from the people.

The former Biya minister had been dismissed by the government describing his move as irresponsible and illegal. Kamto’s coalition ally, Akere Muna, is a former TI top official. He resigned to contest the presidential polls but entered an alliance with Kamto less than 24-hours to the vote.

October 8: Kamto makes unofficial victory declaration

Voting closed in Cameroon in Sunday evening and counting of ballots started in earnest. Main opposition Social Democratic Front, SDF, vowed to police the counting and results declaration process.

But it is the declaration of victory by Maurice Kamto, a former Biya minister that has thrown the process into a state of shock. Kamto who led a two-party alliance involving famed lawyer Akere Muna said the goal of his party had been reached.



A summary of the issues he raised in his victory speech (in French) is as follows:

Cameroonians have chosen to go down a historic path by voting out the incumbent.

He has won a clear mandate he is ready to defend firmly.

Called on Paul Biya to make transition arrangement to avert needless post-poll crisis.

His supporters can remain joyful and proud of the achievement.



The government has yet to officially react to the development but electoral laws suggest that it is an offense to declare oneself winner of the elections. A point that had been stressed by government in the run up to the vote.

Sections of the Electoral System stipulates that the President of the Republic is elected for a seven-year term by universal suffrage and by direct, equal and secret ballot.

According to the Cameroon electoral code, the president is elected by a single-round majority ballot and the candidate having obtained the majority of the votes cast shall be declared elected.

It also states that election will not be complete until Cameroon’s Supreme Court rules on requests for annulment and announces the results.

October 7, 2018: Cameroon polls take place amid high security in English-speaking zones

Cameroonians voted on Sunday (October 7) in a key presidential election which could end or extend the 36-year rule of President Paul Biya, one of Africa’s longest serving leaders.

Polls opened at 0800 local (0700GMT) across much of the country including areas in the restive English-speaking regions. Security has been heightened with armed personnel deployed outside most poling stations.

Reuters reports that three separatists have been shot dead in Bamenda, capital of the northwest region of the country. The northwest and southwest regions have been the epicenter of what has become known as the Anglophone crisis.

A security source told Reuters that the trio had been gunned down for attempting to disrupt the voting process. Separatist groups have vowed to stop the polls from taking place in both regions.

Red carpet for Biya, aspirants cast ballots