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Afrique - 18 mai 2021

Cameroon > Covidgate: Human Right Watch fears for the ministers heard in this case

The NGO is calling on the Cameroonian authorities to conduct a « credible » investigation into suspicions of misappropriation in the management of funds allocated to the fight against the coronavirus.

After the opening of an investigation into the management of funds covid-19, by the President of the Republic. HRW (Human Right Watch) is concerned about the judicial abuses that could occur following its investigations and hearings.

It should be noted that some twenty ministers will be heard in the context of this affair, which has now been given its name in the press, « Covidgate-19 ».

For Human Right Watch, « the lack of transparency and independence of government agencies in Cameroon poses a significant problem of credibility of these processes and respect for procedures. The non-governmental organization is taking the bull by the horns and demanding guarantees from the government of Cameroon on the management of Covid-19 funds. It fears a person-to-person war over a serious matter.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the IMF has approved two emergency loans to the country » for about 316 million dollars, said HRW, adding that Cameroon had promised the financial institution transparency on the use of these funds.

Between 1998 and 2004, according to figures revealed by the Special Criminal Court, 1,845 billion Cfa francs were diverted. Figures that will climb between 2012-2017, 6,000 billion Cfa francs embezzled. Some of Paul Biya’s government bigwigs are in prison and sentenced to many years, but yet the activity seems not to have ended.

Pierre Laverdure OMBANG

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