Prominent Cameroonian journalist Martine Zogo was found dead on Sunday, according to press freedom organization Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and Cameroon’s Ministry of Communication.
Zogo was the director of independent radio broadcaster Amplitude FM and the host of radio show Embouteillages. Regional journalist Samari Sawlani said Zogo “had been vocal on matters related to government corruption.” Zogo was abducted on January 17, and sources told RSF that his “badly mutilated” body was “naked and decomposing” when witnesses discovered it.
Director of RSF’s sub-Sarharan Africa bureau Sadibou Marong commented:
This murder of a journalist who was just doing his job must not go unpunished. We urge the Cameroonian authorities to conduct an independent investigation that does not falter, and to end the climate of violence against media personnel. Journalists must be able to work safely and without risk of reprisals, and to be placed under protection when necessary.
According to democracy watchdog Freedom House, independent journalists in Cameroon “face pressure and the risk of detention or arrest in connection with their work,” and the nation relies heavily on state-run broadcaster Cameroon Radiotelevision for information. Journalist Sébastien Ebala is currently detained on charges on contempt against President Paul Biya, and RSF writes that reporter Paul Chouta was beaten and “left for dead” in March 2022.