Human Rights Lawyers find Horror in Buea Central Prison

0
1416
Aerial View of the Buea Central Prison

This Report is done in Yaounde by Ayukotang Ndep Nkongho

AIM OF VISIT : TO COMMUNICATE WITH PERSONS ARRESTED, DETAINED AND SENTENCED WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF THE CRISIS IN SOUTHERN CAMEROONS (AMBAZONIA)

INSTITUTION VISITED : THE BUEA CENTRAL PRISON

MEMBERS OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS TEAM : BARRISTERS TANYI GILBERT, BATO EMMANUEL AND AYUKOTANG NDEP NKONGHO.

PERSONS CONTACTED AND COMMUNICATED WITH : FOTABONG SAMPSON BECHEM, CLEMENT TOSAN BUNG, TEMBE BLAISE, MBAH KILIAN, AFOR BRUNO, ASHUTANDO DANIEL AND ASAAHYIM JAVIS

On Friday the 13th of December, 2019, a team of Human Rights Lawyers visited the Buea Central Prison to communicate with inmates arrested, detained and convicted within the context of the ongoing crisis in the Southern Cameroons (Ambazonia).

The visit that started from about 12 noon lasted until 4 PM and the Lawyers met seven (7) inmates.

The first inmate we communicated with is FOTABONG SAMPSON BECHEM. He is 35 years old, a father of two (2) children and was an employee of Glocal Gaz Limbe before he was arrested in July 2018 at Mile 17 BUEA.

He was arbitrarily arrested and has been subjected to multiple and diverse forms of torture. He was to appear in  the Buea Military Tribunal on  Thursday the 28th of November 2019 to stand trial for Acts of Terrorism, Succession and related offences. He couldn’t attend the said session because he was in a coma after a major operation. The operation was provoked by pains and malaise resulting from severe torture. His next court session is on the 20th of December 2018.

Prisoners on the courtyard of the Buea Central Prison

The second inmate we communicated with is CLEMENT TOSAN BUNG. He is 30 years old, a father of four (4) children, a seasoned plumber with ten (10) years professional experience with the Cameroon Development Corporation (CDC).

He was abusively arrested in July 2018 at Checkpoint Molyko Stadium by gunmen in civilian attire. He was severely tortured  on the spot and eventually at the Buea Military Camp, the office of the Legion Commander BUEA, Service Central des Recherches Judiciaires Yaounde and at Buea Central Prison where faeces and urine were forced into his mouth.

He has been presented to the Buea Military Tribunal several times where he is charged with Acts of Terrorism, Secession and related offences. His last court session was on Thursday the 28th of November 2019 and the next court session is on Friday the 20th of December 2019.

The third inmate encountered is TEMBE BLAISE, a 29 years old, a committed Carpenter with eight (8) years professional experience in his workshop at Bomaka Buea.

He was abusively arrested on the 22nd of July 2018 at Bomaka Buea by servicemen of the military and the gendarmes of La République du Cameroun. He was severely beaten on the spot and taken first to the Buea Military Camp and later to the Office of the Legion Commander of the Gendarmerie Buea, then to Service Central des Recherches Judiciaires Yaounde and to the Buea Central Prison where he is actually incarcerated. He was tortured for a continuous period of two (2) at the Buea Central Prison starting from the 23rd of July 2019. He was equally forced to consume faeces and urine in the said prison.

He is charged with Acts of Terrorism, Succession and related offences. His last court session was on Thursday the 28th of November 2019 and the next court session is on Friday the 20th of December 2019.

He is chained and has been in chains since the 23rd of July 2019..

The fourth inmate we communicated with is MBAH KILIAN, a 27 years old father of two (2) children and a Bike Rider.

He was arrested on the 23rd of July 2018 at Las Vegas Molyko Buea. He was equally tortured and taken to the different military and Gendarmerie institutions as TEMBE BLAISE. He is currently incarcerated at the Buea Central Prison and was presented to the Buea Military Tribunal on Thursday the 28th of November 2019 to respond to charges for Acts of Terrorism, Succession and related offences. His next court session is on Friday the 20th of December 2019.

He is chained and has been in chains since the 23rd of July z019

The fifth inmate we communicated with is AFOR BRUNO. He is  23 years old and a second year student of the Department of Law of the Faculty of Social and Management Sciences of the University of Buea.

He was abusively arrested by police officers of the Buea Central Police Station on the 3rd of May 2018 at Dirty South Molyko after consuming a meal at Sun City Restaurant. He was tortured on the spot before he was taken to the said Police Station. He was detained at the police station upto the 24th of May 2019 when he was taken to the Buea Central Prison. During his detention at the police station, he was not allowed access to any family member nor to a lawyer. A friend of his was locked up in a  cell in the same police station for more than seven (7) days simply because the latter wanted to visit him.

Female Prisoners outside their crowded quarter

He is currently serving a five (5) year prison sentence for Acts of Terrorism, Succession and related offences. Like the other inmates he was brutally tortured for a continuous period of two (2) weeks starting from the 23rd of July 2019 at the Buea Central Prison.

The sixth inmate we communicated with is ASHUTANDO DANIEL. He is 34 years old, the Manager of Radio 102.7 opposite OIC Buea. He is also the the proprietor of three commercial enterprises at Limbe.

He was abusively arrested on Sunday morning of the 24th of March 2019 Mbalangi Kumba. Severely tortured on the spot, he was taken to the BIR camp at Mabanda Kumba, then to the Buea Military Camp and back to another BIR Camp in Kumba. He was later taken to the Office of the Commander of Legion Buea, and finally to the Buea Central Prison. Like the other inmates he was savagely tortured in the different military camps, the Legion Commander’s office and the Buea Central Prison.

Prisoners take pictures with prison offcials

Two mothers of his children were equally arrested and provisionally detained. Both have been released but one suffered an abortion during the detention and torture.

He was shot on the right sheen in the Buea Central Prison in the month of July 2019.

He is charged with Acts of Terrorism, Succession and related offences.

His next court session is on Tuesday the 17th of December 2019.

The seventh inmate we communicated with is ASAAHYIM JAVIS a 22 years old Bike Rider who was arbitrarily arrested on Sunday the 1st of December 2019 at Mberinkaa Market Forsimondeh at Lebialem.

He was was intercepted by a group of gendarmes who after searching him and his phone, restituted his phone and and ordered him to go his way. As he turned to go, one ordered him to return and follow them to the Brigade at NKONEH. Immediately he got to the Brigade, the Brigade Commander started beating him and forcing him ‘… to produce his gun’ and ‘show their camp’s.’  As he cried and pleaded that he had no gun nor knows any camp, the torture intensified until he was latertaken to the Brigade at Dschang before he was taken to the Brigade in Buea.

He is currently incarcerated at the Buea Central Prison. He has a wound on the left ankle sustained from the torture.

His next session is the 14th of January 2020.

This Report is done in Yaounde today sunday the 15th of December, 2019

By Ayukotang Ndep Nkongho.