Press Release on ambush of gay men on internet

Published: November 11, 2011

Since two weeks, it prevails in the city of Yaoundé in Cameroon a climate of fear and concern among the gay community.

The lookouts ambush on the website frequented by and scams have become common with the complicity of certain law enforcement as well as M. Ekobo the author of these ambush.
The latest victim, Steve O, will not soon forget what happened to him. The latter after a dialogue on a website with M. Ekobo, decided to meet at Santa Barbara area in Yaoundé, in a place call: Snack "Oasis".

When Steve O arrived at the place of the rendez-vous, he was greeted by M. Ekobo who immediately declared to be there to help in the arrest of homosexuals. It then followed an altercation and a fight between the two men who were later joined by some elements of the gendarmerie of Etoudi.
Steve O was taken to the gendarmerie of Etoudi station on Monday 7th November 2011. Informed by the President of Humanity First Cameroon, a tripartite delegation composed of Alternatives-Cameroon, Humanity First Cameroon and the family of Steve O, were mobilized to give him a moral and legal support.

Note that the president of Humanity First Cameroon and two of his members who have decided to go to the gendarmerie station were detained several hours in the same gendarmerie of Etoudi before being released.

Steve O was released last Wednesday the 9th November 2011 after his family had paid a sum of 70,000 CFA francs to the chief of the gendarmerie of Etoudi who seemed more sensitive to financial gain of the case than to hear legal arguments advanced by the lawyer.

Last Thursday 10th November 2011, the same M. Ekobo wanted to renew his act, holding another ambush to another gay on internet. But he failed this time. The two men were taken this time at the gendarmerie of Melen in Yaoundé where the chief of the brigade is a close relative of Steve O, victim of the same M.Ekobo last Monday.

The chief of Brigade of Melen who has followed the case of the nephew, immediately appealed to him to identify M.Ekobo. Also note that the number of victims of this ambush is at least twenty people. The chief of gendarmerie of Melen finally released M.Ekobo after a pressure he received.
Alternatives-Cameroon and Humanity First regret that our security forces who are supposed to protect population against this type of individual and actions are found to be involved in a high-level of such actions.

Alternatives-Cameroon and Humanity First believe that these abuses persist because of the existence of the Article 347 Bis which penalize same sex practice in Cameroon.

Call for the arrest and incarceration of actors of such acts and finally ask once again to the repeal of the article 347 Bis of the Cameroonian penal code.

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