Some judges of the Supreme Court of Cameroun have openly protested the arrest of Lord Justice Ayah Paul Abine by secret service agents loyal to the 83 year-old dictator, Paul Biya. According to the judges, Ayah’s arrest occurred in violation of article 629 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
The Supreme Court judges pointed out that the nation is now being run like a banana republic. The leaders of the judiciary also indicated via a Yaoundé based tabloid that the legal provision to which a judge of the Supreme Court or a magistrate of the judicial order is liable to be charged with an offense has been violated.
The Judges revealed that for any arrest to be carried out, the competent Attorney-General must submit an application to the President of the Supreme Court who has to appoint a magistrate responsible for examining the case and three others, with a rank at least equal to that of the defendant, with a view to the eventual judgment of the case.
Lord Justice Paul Ayah Abine was arrested last Saturday at his home by six armed men and taken to the Secretary of State for Defense (SED) where he remains detained. The executive branch of the government reportedly wrote a letter to the President of the Supreme Court claiming that Ayah Paul was involved in politics as leader of the People’s Action Party. The Cameroonian judges have however made it abundantly clear that this part of his life cannot justify the form of his arrest.
“He was arrested because he expressed his opinions. But when he was appointed to the Supreme Court, they knew who he was, what political ideas he had! Why pretend today to be surprised by his political struggle? “Said a Judge. For them, the arrest of Paul Ayah Abine shows them that no one is safe
With files from Cameroon Concord News