Monday, March 16, 2020

Owona Nguini tackles 'the Media' for giving Ayuk Tabe the floor

The academic believes that the Cameroonian media are regularly guilty of this kind of oddity and this is what is criticized by Paul Atanga Nji.

This Sunday, March 15, 2020, the private television channel Vision 4 devoted a large part of the Sunday debate program "Club d'Elites", to the analysis of the recent release of Paul Atanga Nji, the Minister of Administration Territoriale, which on March 9, during a press conference organized in the premises of the ministerial department for which it is responsible, called to order certain media which, from its point of view, relayed without precautions, reports "Truncated" from national and international NGOs. Present during this television program, the academic and political scientist Mathias Eric Owona Nguini, also a permanent consultant of the said program, wanted to explain the necessity of the exit from MINAT. 

“Freedom is not absolute freedom, it is always conditioned. There are a number of repositories that organize it. The Cameroonian media, whether televised or otherwise, are free to have the editorial lines they want, as long as these editorial lines do not question national security imperatives, "he said. Subsequently, the university professor did not hide his amazement at the editorial choice of the private daily Le Messager which reserved the front page of its edition of March 11, 2020, as well as two pages of this publication for an interview with Sisuku Ayuk Tabe, self-proclaimed president of the puppet republic of Ambazonia, sentenced in August 2019 to life imprisonment with 9 of his companions for acts of secession and terrorism.

For Owona Nguini, this journalistic approach is akin to a clear apology for secession. "Can we, in the name of freedom of expression, give the floor to the political leader of an armed movement who has attacked the integrity of Cameroon, who has assumed political action in the media regarding armed actions against the Republic of Cameroon? We put him in one, we give him two pages of interview at a time when the Cameroon defense and security forces are facing a conflict which is particularly difficult. Because it is internal warfare. And in this internal war, the armed groups hide among the populations. Is it normal what The Messenger had to do? ”He asked himself. 

"It's not normal at all!" There, we are no longer in freedom of expression. Giving voice to an enemy constituted and characterized by the national security of Cameroon, is not normal. Even under freedom of information. We not only give him the floor, but we do not even take any customary precaution to indicate that we must be very careful about the issue. On the contrary, it becomes a form of apology. Well that is what is criticized in the media, "he added.