In a speech delivered in Yaoundé on Monday, October 8, opposition candidate Maurice Kamto declared victory in the presidential election held the day before, without providing any further information to support his claim. The government responded with a denial, asserting that only the Constitutional Council was authorized to release results and that any attempt to circumvent the usual process was illegal; provisional results from Sunday's vote have not yet been released. Official election results are expected in two weeks.
A continued heavy security presence can be expected throughout major urban centers, especially in the restive Northwest and Southwest regions, in the coming hours and days. Political demonstrations, as well as attacks by separatist militants, remain possible.
Tensions between the country's minority English-speaking community and the national authorities in the Northwest and Southwest regions were high in the run-up to the October 7 vote and remain so, with Anglophone separatists having threatened to disrupt the election. African Union election observers reported that polling passed off without major incident across much of the country, although some fighting was reported in the restive Anglophone regions, where observers were not sent due to security concerns.
The period since November 2016 has been marked by the closure of English-speaking schools, strikes, unrest, and sporadic violence. Tensions have escalated considerably since October 2017, when secessionists unilaterally proclaimed independence in the region. The fighting has forced tens of thousands of civilians to flee over the border into Nigeria. At least 400 civilians, as well as 172 members of security forces, have reportedly been killed in the violent unrest thus far in 2018.
Individuals in Cameroon are advised to closely monitor developments to the situation and avoid any rallies, protests, or other large public gatherings due to the potential for unrest. Abide by all instructions issued by the authorities.
Copyright and Disclaimer