Public Manifestations in Cameroon: What the law says
Public Manifestations: What the law says
In Cameroon, the Ministry of Territorial Administration regulates the activities of political parties.
In this regard the parties are expected to take a pass from civil administrators before organizing public manifestations. The penal code also defines where political party activities can take place as well as sanctions when the law is not respected.
“Section 123-2: Political Demonstrations during the Electoral Period (1) Any activity or manifestation of a political character shall be prohibited within public establishments as well as in school and university establishments. (2) Any infringement of the provisions of Subsection 1 above shall be punished with imprisonment for from ten (10) days to four (4) months or with fine of from CFAF 25 000 (twenty-five thousand) to CFAF 250 000 (two hundred and fifty thousand) or with both such imprisonment and fine.”
On Saturday, 26th January 2019, some supporters of the Cameroon Renaissance Movement, CRM political party stormed and vandalised Cameroon’s Embassy in Paris, France disturbing the functioning of the institutions that has remained closed ever since.
The Penal code in its section 185 also defines penalties for disturbance as follows;
“Whoever disturbs the operation of any public service to which he does not belong shall be punished with imprisonment for from 6 (six) days to 1 (one) month or with fine of from CFAF 1 000 (one thousand) to CFAF 50 000 (fifty thousand).”
The Cameroonian legislature has put in place a number of instruments regulate sanction cases of damage of public or protected property as stipulated in Section 187 of the penal code;
“Whoever destroys or defaces any monument, statue or other property dedicated to public use or adornment and erected by public authority or by leave of the said authority, or any protected immovable or movable object or natural feature or site, shall be punished with imprisonment for from 1 (one) month to 2 (two) years and with fine of from CFAF 20 000 (twenty thousand) to CFAF 120 000 (one hundred and twenty thousand)”
The Minister of Territorial Administration also indicated that political parties that do not respect the law can be suspended temporally or banned from operating throughout the national territory.