Cameroon Govt Cancels ‘Ghost’ Observers Presser, Poll Petition Starts

Today is the day elections petitions 18 in all are expected to be heard by the Constitutional Council sitting in the capital Yaounde.

Individuals and parties are seeking partial and in some cases total cancellation of the October 7 presidential polls.

Yesterday, there was a no-show despite widely publicized news that the government through information minister, Issa Tchiroma Bakary, was to explain the “ghost observers,” who claimed to be from Transparency international, TI.

The said observers had given top marks to the election process last week but also attracted a disavowal by TI who said they had no observers dispatched to Cameroon for such reasons.

Bildergebnis für Cameroon Govt Cancels 'Ghost' Observers Presser, Poll Petition Starts

The camp of self-acclaimed poll winner Maurice Kamto has also been buzzing. Kamto’s camp were barred from holding a press conference in Yaounde yesterday even though he issued a statement on Facebook dismissing reports of a Biya victory of 71%.

Kamto’s also received his party’s treasurer who was released from jail after over a week. The CRM Treasurer, Okala Ebode, had been behind bars for 8 days because he denounced electoral fraud, local portals said.

State-owned Cameroon Radio Television, CRTV, late last week reported that a date had been fixed to hear election petitions filed in relation to the October 7 presidential elections.

The date is October 16, 2018 at the Yaounde Convention Center. The election body, ELECAM, has confirmed receiving 18 petitions filed at the Constitutional Council.

The petitioners including major opposition parties are seeking partial and in some cases total cancellation of the results. Already, one candidate, Maurice Kamto has claimed victory in a move widely condemned by government and the ruling party.

Bildergebnis für Cameroon Govt Cancels 'Ghost' Observers Presser, Poll Petition Starts

Meanwhile, local media portals are reporting that a leaked result shows that president Paul Biya was in the lead with over 71% of votes cast. The government or ELECAM has yet to confirm or deny the information.

The fight against fake news was one of the core campaign issues ahead of the election. Yaounde had gone as far as seek the help of social media giants, Facebook, to help combat the menace.

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