Are Pépin Haman and Le Jour Newspaper, promoting tribalism and hate speech?


In a news report published by 'Le Jour' Newspaper, Pépin Haman Mana described the repression of the insurgency march of the political party Movement for the Renaissance of Cameroon (MRC) of June 8, 2019 and many others which preceded it, as a “Pursuit of Facies” « la traque au faciès ». By this allusion, the editor of this article and his newspaper behaved like a militia in the service of a pressure group whose thinking head would be the MRC. A publication aimed at mounting an ethnic group against others and likely to plunge Cameroon into chaos as was the case with Rwanda almost three decades ago. The newspaper Le Jour imposes itself without hindrance as a fervent defender not only of the acts posed by the activists of the movement, both nationally and internationally, but also and especially as an advocate of its promoter.

In Cameroon, it is known to all that the newspaper l’Action was created by the CPDM, so they promote their activities meanwhile Le Jour, since its creation, treats general information. Therefore, the commitment of the newspaper Le Jour to support a specific party, neglecting its ethics under the impulse of its Director of publication Haman Mana (though a brilliant journalist according to several people), eventually dropped his mask.

Its headline of Thursday, June 13, 2019 which actually marked his 2950th issue brought several people to say that he crossed the red line. After calling the forces of Law and Order, savages in one of the publications, the newspaper of Pepin Haman Mana once again "pressed spoil" to borrow a vulgar expression in Cameroon, by calling the arrests in the aftermath of the insurgency march to Yaoundé, from June 8, 2019 - « la traque au faciès ». a way of saying that the arrests had a strong racist or tribalistic connotation. This headline has provoked several reactions both from Internet users and within the Cameroonian political circle.

 In the article with respect to this title contained in page 5 of the newspaper, Haman Mana indicates that during the white marches organized on June 8, 2019, by the Movement for the Renaissance of Cameroon, (MRC) "several people were arrested on the basis of their ethnicity ". To defend against the public outcry that this publication has aroused, the newspaper said in its article of  Monday, July 17, 2019 that: "We have reported the facts." - The truth that exposed Haman's lies. In an interview with the online newspaper, "Le Bled Parle" Haman Mana says, "People should not react to our Headline. People should however react to the police and the gendarmerie who, when they arrest a protester, systematically ask him "where are you from?" ". From the question asked where are you from?, The newspaper Le Jour "kills" the information contained in its headline, which relates to the « la traque au faciès » and the action that would have been or are presently being carried out by the law enforcement and security forces, whose elements would all be allegedly of an ethnic group, the one to which belongs the winner of the presidential election of October 7, 2019. Everything that strangely resembles a real staging, when we know that among the people arrested during the said march are indeed people from all the ten regions of Cameroon. The proof: His majesty Biloa Effa, traditional chief of 3rd degree in the district of Yaoundé II, was among those arrested. How then in such a case, can we speak of a « la traque au faciès », if it is not a real desire to sow chaos?

Cameroonians as a whole accept each other and live in perfect harmony or at least, to borrow an expression of a former regional governor Abakar Ahamat, Cameroonians know how to live side by side. The tribalism advocated by some obviously embroiled political leaders can only serve their selfish interests. Playing such a game is a barely veiled way of associating with crime. Moreover, it costs nothing for a journalist, a little smart, to mount from scratch evidence to serve a cause. What can the promoter of this newspaper say today to justify this clear stance in favour of a political party?, even if we must recognize that the law does not condemn this, but it remains that calls for insurrection or the war between the tribes constitutes an unacceptable drift. One would think that the Cameroonian Forces of Law and Order are essentially nationals of one ethnic group and who take the nasty pleasure of arresting all those who are not part of this ethnic group. It is always easy for some to dispense knowledge while they themselves are unable to take the step when it comes to putting their teaching into practice.

 If one is free to campaign in any political party, one is not at all free to want to divide a people that are united in their diversity by propagating conflicting information through any media outlet.

Reported by: Jules Brice Ngaba

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