Digital Rights in Cameroon’s 2018 Election

A colloquium to discuss Digital Rights in Election, has been convened in Yaounde, on the 12th of September and 13th 2018 respectively, by the Internet Without Border, in partnership with Internet Society, Access Now and Paradigm Initiative. The colloquium which will be the first of its kind in Cameroon will bring together participants from the government, internet service providers, online services, members of the civil society and academia and will also create the platform for them to discuss the fight against online fake news and hate speech, and the necessary continuation of the freedom of expression on the Cameroonian cyberspace. This comes at a time when rumors are circulating on social media that the government in collaboration with MTN, are planning to cut the internet during the presidential election. Such rumors are as a result of continues propaganda, hate speech, cyber bullying, blackmail and fake news that have been plaguing the Cameroon cyberspace since the Anglophone crisis started in 2016. Since then, freedom of expression has been a problem as most social media platforms have been under examination by the Cameroon government with many being arrested for sharing or creating fake news till date. In 2017, the North West and South West Regions witnessed an internet shutdown which violates human rights. In order to manage content online, the Cameroon authorities have invited Facebook Inc for a nine days working session, during they will look at ways to curb fake news during the forthcoming presidential election in Cameroon come 7th October. 

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