Another journalist shot and killed in Yaoundé 0

The UN Security Council should now push the Francophone Cameroun authorities to conduct a thorough and independent investigation into the killing of journalist Jean Jacques Ola Bébé, who also moonlighted as a priest of the Catholic Orthodox Church, originally from Lekié Division like the late Martinez Zogo, a journalist who was kidnapped and tortured to death two weeks ago in Yaoundé.

In the evening of February 2, 2023, unidentified attackers shot and killed Jean Jacques Ola Bébé near his home in Mimboman.   According to sources, the 41 year old communicator who had worked with several media houses in Yaoundé was shot dead by Cameroon government agents.

Journalist Jean Jacques Ola was found in the next morning with gunshot wounds to his chest and head.

A highly placed Cameroon government security official contacted by chief political correspondent Chi Prudence Asong, alleged that unspecified government security forces had killed Jean Jacques Ola Bébé. Cameroon Intelligence Report correspondent in Yaoundé also cited anonymous sources saying that they believed Cameroon government security forces were responsible for the killing.

Conflicting reports on the arrest and subsequent release of media tycoon Amougou Belinga and unanswered questions about the killing of journalists Martinez Zogo and Jean Jacques Ola Bébé both from the Lekié constituency is sending a message of fear to the broader media community in Cameroon, and is entrenching impunity in attacks on the press.

It is evidently clear that these killings are linked to the succession battle currently going on deep within the ruling Beti Ewondo clans on who to take over from the ailing President Biya who will be 90 this month.

The International Community must ensure that investigations into Zogo and Ola killings and their motives are swift and credible, make their findings public, and hold those responsible to account.

By Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai