A well known journalist in Cameroon has been placed in preventive detention for some social media comments she made.
Mimi Mefo who is a television presenter from the country’s restive anglophone region, is accused by the government of “attacking state security”.
AFP reports that her lawyer said on Thursday that his client was arrested on Wednesday and charged by a military tribunal.
She was placed in preventive detention in the New-Bell prison in Cameroon’s commercial capital Douala. Her lawyer said she will be tried by a military court on Monday.
What Mimi said
Mefo is facing jail term for a social media post she put up saying “the army was responsible for the death of US missionary Charles Trumann Wesco”
Charles Wesco, a 44-year-old was shot while traveling in the English-speaking North West region, gripped with violence as the military fights separatists.
Family Insists Military Killed U.S. Baptist Missionary In Bambui https://t.co/exknmJ68L0
— Mimi237 (@Mimimefo237) November 1, 2018
Mr. Wesco had just moved into the country two weeks ago. Family sources say he was shot in a car, in-front of his wife, son, another missionary and a driver.
In a statement government said the missionary was caught in cross-fire between the security forces and separatist fighters.
The government also blamed the rebels for Mr Wesco’s death. It said state troops killed the four fighters responsible for the missionary’s killing.
Fighting has been ongoing in northwest Cameroon as the military fights off English-speaking separatists demanding a break away.
The government is unhappy with media reportage blaming its troops for the missionary’s death.
Reactions for Mimi’s detention
The National Union of Cameroon Journalists said in a statement that Mefo’s “innocence is established and the proof that her imprisonment was planned is overwhelming.”
Our very own Mimi Mefo has been taken to New bell Prison in handcuffs. Her crime? “Les ordres viennent de Yde.” Auditioned for all of 10 mins between 14h-21h. Her case moved from the Gendarmerie to Military Tribunal It was their intention all along to arrest her. #FreeMimiMefo
— Kah Walla (@KahWalla) November 7, 2018
Sad to imagine Mimi Mefo (@Mimimefo237) spending the night in New Bell Prison, Douala. The government is intimidating Mimi for her factual and objective reporting. She is head of English news and presenter at @EquinoxeTv_cm while running https://t.co/pCuUATJ4EI. #Cameroon pic.twitter.com/WJYgsyfvEv
— Albert Nchinda (@AlbertNchinda) November 7, 2018
— Subiru Madina (@SubiruM) November 5, 2018