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Periodical article Periodical article
Title:The Legal Framework for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in Cameroon by Non-Governmental Organisations
Author:Boma, Alvine Longla
Periodical:Recht in Afrika = Law in Africa = Droit en Afrique (ISSN 2363-6270)
Geographic term:Cameroon
External link:https://www.nomos-elibrary.de/index.php?doi=10.5771/2363-6270-2021-1-29
Abstract:Civil Society organisations play key roles in African countries. This is not an exception in the Cameroonian dispensation. Indeed, the existence and operation of civil societies in this jurisdiction is legitimated by a 1990 law allowing the free formation of associations. Even though the state has the primary obligation to promote and protect human rights, there also exists a plethora of associations with the same interest. This paper is motivated by the state's wanton failure in ensuring the enjoyment and fulfilment of the right. For one thing, the state has maintained a stronghold on the Civil Society through legislation which gives public authorities a leverage over human rights defenders. Moreover, an analysis of existing legal and institutional frameworks available to allow human rights non-governmental organisations thrive, leaves much to be desired. Findings reveal that though there are adequate laws and institutions which ensure the creation and functioning of Civil Society organisations in Cameroon, there are also contradictory laws which give the public authority an edge over these organisations and allow them to sanction the activities of some human rights defenders under the guise of maintaining public order. We argue that there should be adequate protection offered to human rights defenders as well as the relaxation of laws permitting public authorities to illegally sanction the activities of relevant non-governmental organisations.