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Emergency A. Nature and description of emergency COVID-19 measures

  • Acts of the Executive 
    The COVID-19 crisis is regulated by two acts of the Executive. The Government  Response Strategy to the Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) of 17 March 2020 and the  Government Response Strategy to the Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) of 24 March  2020 

  • The Response Strategy of 17 March 2020
    The Response Strategy of 17 March 2020 put in place a certain number of measure to address the pandemic. These measures include the closing of borders and schools;  prohibition of the gathering of more than 50 persons; strict observance of the World  Health Organization (WHO)’s barrier gestures. 

  •  The Response Strategy of 24 March 2020 
    The Response Strategy of 24 March 2020 reminds measures and outlines Article 260  of the Penal Code as the criminal legal provision governing the measures. Article 260 of the Penal Code punishes with imprisonment from three months to three years  anyone who, by his conduct, facilitates the transmission of a contagious and  dangerous disease 

Democracy B. Democracy-related issues arising from COVID-19 responses of states 

  • Elections
    Cameroon decided to hold its elections in March 2020 despite the existence of the  COVID-19 reported in the country. The elections seem to expose people to the contamination because there was an observation of increased cases. Indeed, at the time elections were held there were 40 reported cases. But in Avril, the cases jumped to 1163. Cameroon seemed to have missed balancing citizen right to choose their representative through the election and their right to life. The elections seemed to have  exposed Cameroonian to more contamination of COVID-19

  • Executive

    Inter-Ministerial Committee weekly meetings 

    In line with the Government Response Strategy to the Coronavirus Pandemic  (COVID-19) of 17 March 2020 and the Government Response Strategy to the  Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) of 24 March 2020, the Government put in place an Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and monitoring the implementation of Government's response strategy against the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon. The Inter-Ministerial Committee is expected to have a weekly meeting but does not hold meetings weekly. The inconstancy in the way these meetings are held may affect the effectiveness of measures in terms of Government follow-up. 

    Press release 20 August 2020
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download  

    Press release 13 August 2020 
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download

    Press release 6 August 2020 
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download

    Press release 23 July 2020 
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download

    Press release 10 July 2020 
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download

    Press release 4 June 2020 
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download

    Press release 7 May 2020
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download

    Press release 23 April  2020
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon 
    Download 

    Press release 1 April 2020
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download 

    Press release 31 March 2020 
    The weekly meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Committee in charge of evaluating and  monitoring the implementation of the Government’s response strategy against  the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon
    Download 

    The Presidential Decree of 15 April 2020 on the commutation and remission of sentences for certain prisoners. 
    The Decree come after calls to address the overcrowded population in prisons in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. The Decree aims to combat COVID-19 in prisons. According to the Minister of Justice and Keeper of the Seal, the Decree allowed to decongest the country's prisons and, consequently reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread in the prison. However, the Decree has been criticised and described by the opposition as a selective by excluding separatists Anglophone and official in jail for corruption.  According to the opposition the presidential Decree exposes more prisoners to  COVID-19 given the fact that it did not resolve overcrowded problems of prisons.

  • Parliament
  • Judiciary (role of courts; decided cases related to COVID-19)
  • Transparency/ access to information 

  • Abuse by law enforcement agents/exacerbation of authoritarian tendencies/power grabs

Six supporters of opposition leader Maurice Kamto Case
Six supporters of opposition leader Maurice Kamto Case  On 15 May 2020, six supporters of opposition leader Maurice Kamto were arrested and detained by the police for distributing free masks to the population. They were accused of unlawful distribution of masks and rebellion.

David Ngwa Fru Case 
David Ngwa Fru, a seventeen-year-old was arrested by the police within a taxi for not wearing a mask. He was fined 2000FCA without any receipt. Many other persons were also arrested for not wearing masks. The amount of the fine is not unclear. There is a risk of abuse by law enforcement is not only arbitrary arresting those who are not wearing masks but also fining them with the unlawful amount or not issuing a receipt for the amount paid. 

  • Democratic reform
    There was no information on this at the time of completing this research. 

Human Rights C. Human rights-related issues arising from COVID-19 responses of state

  • Right to health (including infrastructure, access to testing)

    Paid access to testing and treatment 
    The minister of health announced free access to Covid19 testing and treatment. The  Government promised to provide equipment and kits for testing to hospitals in order to secure access to free testing and treatment to Cameroonian. However, two weeks after the announcement, there was evidence of paid testing and treatment in some hospitals where people paid around the equivalent of 100$ to get tested and treated.  Those in charge of those hospitals indicated that they were charging the testing and treatment because the Government did not fulfil its promise to provide equipment and kits.  

  • Right to housing (including homelessness, informal settlements, slums, shacks) 
  • Right to water and sanitation
  • Right to food/ nutrition and other socio-economic rights 
  • Economic impact/ impact small business/ employment social security networks
  • Women (including domestic violence)
  • Children (including education)
  • Persons with disabilities
  • LGBTI Persons
  • Indigenous persons
  • Migrants
  • Persons deprived of their liberty (persons in incarceration; police detention)
  • Right to life and bodily security (arrests; deaths as result of lockdown)
  • Freedom of assembly
  • Freedom of movement
  • Freedom of expression/ access to information/ privacy/digital rights 

SummaryD. Summary (Analysis, Trends)

There is increasing stigmatisation of those who are COVID-19 positive and those who  have recovered.