Adamawa: Fight against Hatespeech, Xenophobia

The AFFDA and CNPBM have assisted in the training of collectives of journalists in the fight against hatespeech and xenophobia. 

Fighting against hate speech and promoting a better understanding of the phenomenon among media professionals, was the objective pursued by the Association of Women and Girls of Adamawa and the National Commission for the Promotion of Bilingualism and Living together.

Organized on September 20, 2022 in Ngaoundéré, Adamawa region, the training was organized for the benefit of journalists with the objective of peace and education within the media. 

The training also focused on the legal framework related to this issue and made it possible to define the role, responsibilities of media professionals in the fight against speech and messages inciting hatred in Adamawa.

According to AFFADA and its partner, the National Commission for the Promotion of Bilingualism and Multiculturalism, both wage a war against hate speech, which can trigger conflict in society. 

To combat this phenomenon, the media have a very important role to play. In accordance with Article 5 of the Journalist's Code of Deontology and ethics of the profession; ban insult, defamation, slander, slander, accusations without proof, distortion of facts, lies, incitement to hatred (religious, ethnic, tribal, regional or racial)".

This therefore means that journalists must avoid hate speech,  avoid unnecessary references to the identity of subjects, promote diversity in society. 

Eric Nguelle is a peace journalist working for Canal 2 international, found the training very interesting and useful for his work. 

“This training will help me know my role as a journalist in countering hate speech and hate messages. It also allowed me to become more aware of my importance in the fight against this phenomenon in the community and especially in Adamawa where these cases are common". 

"We as journalists should make the commitment to denounce Hatespeech, refrain from speeches that divide us and advocate living together ".

Ibrahim Zaoro, Journalist for the daily newspaper Le Messager also took part in this training. 

“This training allowed us to increase our knowledge. As journalists, we are constantly in the field, interviewing people, but we often find ourselves in this kind of difficulty, since we did not know what is really hatespeech is all about or a message inciting hate".

"With  what we have learnt, we will do our job and avoid falling into these offenses of incitement to hatred, since it is punishable by Cameroonian law. It's going to help us reframe things even more, especially when we're dealing with issues that affect communities". 

As a reminder, the United Nations defines hatespeech as "any type of communication (oral, written, behavioral) constituting an attack or using pejorative or discriminatory language against a person or a group because of their identity (religion, race, ethnicity, nationality, skin color, gender, ancestry).

Combating hatespeech requires coordinated action to address the root causes and drivers behind it, as well as the consequences for victims and society.

By Ibrahim Zaro in Adamawa


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