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3 Journalists Arrested In Buea Whisked To Yaounde 

By Andrew Nsoseka

Journalists in Buea woke up on February 9 to the sad news that some of their colleagues had been arrested in connection with the ongoing Anglophone Struggle.

The Southwest Bureau Chief of The Guardian Post, Amos Fofung; the Political Desk Editor for The Sun newspaper, Atia Tilarius, alongside a journalist from NDEFCAM radio in Bamenda, were rounded up in Molyko, Buea, and taken to the Molyko District Police Station, later transferred to the Buea Central Police Station and then ferried to Yaounde on February 10.

Learning of the arrests, journalists in Buea and neighbouring towns rallied to plead for the release of their colleagues, to no avail.

The arrest of the journalists has left their other colleagues in fear, as many are now of the opinion that any flimsy excuse can be used to crack down on journalists in order to shut them up and crush freedom of the press, opinion and expression.

Atia Tilarious’ case is that his phone contained messages about the strike. The public is raising concerns on whether one can control incoming messages to his or her phone. People familiar with the journalism practice have also asked how journalists’ phones can be searched and journalists implicated, given that they are those who investigate and gather information both from the Government side and that of the population on strike.

Some journalists are now asking whether they should not contact sources or even balance their stories with the opinions of those behind the strike.

Many are now of the view that the Government wants only its own side of the story to be told and others neglected, since any information coming from those on strike is considered criminal.

Meantime, sympathisers are asking why they had to be taken to Yaounde, when there are cells and courts in the region where they could be kept and tried.




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