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Canal 2 English Program ‘Tough Talk’ Suspended

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Cameroon Censorship: ‘Tough Talk’ On Canal II Television Suspended…Indefinitely

By Solomon Amabo

Journalist/Blogger

One of the lone English programs, “ToughTalk” on Canal II Television, broadcasting from Douala in Cameroon has been suspended.

Although the suspension is still from word to mouth, the program was not on air this Thursday, August 24 at 10:00 am local time. The program also comes up live every Tuesday at the same time.

The twitter handle of one of the panelists, Elie Smith on August 23 2014 carried the following tweet. “The flagship Canal 2 English program : Tough Talk, broadcast every Tuesdays & Thursdays has been temporarily suspended,” without any precision. On when the program would resume Elie Smith added in a facebook comment : “No idea. Perhaps when the situation political atmosphere improves, which I doubt that, it is any time soon.”

Divine

The Management of Canal II TV was not immediately available for comments. Sources however hinted that pressure was mounted on Canal II officials for the program to be suspended. “The pressure came from the Ministry of Communication and especially from the Ministry of Justice. The complaint was the program was hitting too hard on the Anglophone crisis,” our source said.

It was also gathered that the government was requesting that the program host and panelists speak in favour of government and for school resumption. The host of the program, Ntaryinke Divine and co-panelists, Henry Kejang and Elie Smith are all reported to have insisted on balance reporting and presentation of the facts and truth, no matter how hard they may be.

Kejang Henry simply said he had no idea as to why the program was temporary suspended. It is however said that besides the focus on the Anglophone crisis the independence in the tone of the program also scared Yaounde authorities.

Kejang Henry

The telephone lines of the Minster of Communication, Issa Tchiroma, rang several times but he never picked it up.

Since the start of the Southern Cameroons crisis, sometime in October 2016, at least five English speaking journalist have been detained in prison while many others are suffering the same fate in Bamenda in the North West of Cameroon. Calls for the release for journalists arrested have so far fallen on deaf ears. The repression by Cameroon government on the media has caused some media practitioners to flee arrest or resort to self-censorship.

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