Cameroon opposition members freed, but others detained

28 October 2018 - 18:12 By AFP
Longtime president of Cameroon Paul Biya. (File photo)
Longtime president of Cameroon Paul Biya. (File photo)
Image: Lintao Zhang/Pool/AFP

Cameroon authorities have released around 50 opposition supporters detained in Douala, but also arrested others on Sunday in Yaoundé, their party said.

"They were freed," said a member of Maurice Kamto's party, Movement for the Rebirth of Cameroon (MRC) in reference to those arrested Saturday during an unauthorised march called to protest the results of a presidential election on October 7.

Kamto placed second in the poll with 14.23 percent of the vote, behind president Paul Biya, who has governed Cameroon for 35 years and was credited with 71.28 percent.

One of those arrested on Saturday was taken to hospital after he "fell from a police vehicle", a relative said.

Meanwhile, other MRC supporters were arrested Sunday in the capital, Kamto spokesman Olivier Bibou-Nissack said.

"Several peaceful supporters arrested on the plaza of the Notre Dame of Yaoundé cathedral this morning," he wrote on social media.

Opposition figure Michele Ndoki was among those detained the day before. She is one of Kamto's lawyers who protested before the Constitutional Council against "massive and systematic fraud" during the election.

On Friday, minister Paul Atanga Nji warned that "any attempts to disturb the public order will be met with the greatest firmness.

"With the proclamation of the results, the process has ended," Nji said, before adding that "public demonstrations must now take place in conditions set by law". Protest permit requests are often rejected, however.