24, February 2019
Cameroon Association of English-speaking Journalists (CAMASEJ) said Friday the president of the Northwest regional chapter of the association Ambe Macmillian Awa, who was kidnapped Thursday by “unknown gunmen,” has been released.
“He was released today Feb. 22 by 11 am. He is doing well and in good health. He was not tortured by his captors,” Fongoh Primus Ayeh, secretary general of CAMASEJ Northwest, told Xinhua.
He said, Awa was interrogated by government forces after his release. “We still don’t know who kidnapped him and why. Journalism is not a crime,” he said.
Awa, who is also secretary general of the Northwest chapter of Cameroon Journalists’ Trade Union, is the first high profile journalist to be kidnapped since an armed conflict started in the two English-speaking regions of Cameroon in November 2017.
Kidnappings have become widespread in the two troubled Anglophone regions of Northwest and Southwest since the start of this year.
Over the weekend, some 170 students and their teacher were kidnapped in the Northwest. They were released later following negotiations.