#defyhatenow Media Mentions

Newsupfront (Interview): “I will prescribe one keyword: Synergy,” Ngala Desmond said, adding that collective action is needed because “hate speech could come in any form”.

Make fight against hate speech a public commitment – Ngala Desmond

The founder of Civic Watch, a community-based and youth-led organization which empowers communities to counter hate speech both online and offline says, for Cameroon to become a hatespeech-free nation, there is need for a synergy of actions. He was speaking in a recent interview granted to The Post Newspaper.


Story, Louvier Kindo Tombe

Fighting hate speech is a personal decision but it requires a collective action. In Cameroon, the struggle has been on but took a different dimension when Association Civic Watch saw the light of day.

“We are happy that the media, the church, cultural and traditional leaders, young people and policies have been engaged in the country, and we are moving towards achieving a hate-free Cameroon,” Ngala Desmond, Country Project Manager at defyhatenow and founder of Civic Watch said.


The strides of the association has created a conscious behaviour in local communities which now see the dangers that hate speech poses to them as individuals or a group.

Peace activity organized by Defyhatenow in Cameroon


Peace activity organized by Defyhatenow in Cameroon (archives)

Generally, hate speech is any form of expression through which speakers intend to vilify, humiliate, or incite hatred against a group or a class of persons on the basis of race, religion, skin color sexual identity, gender identity, ethnicity, disability, or national origin. In Cameroon, the Boko Haram insurgency, the Anglophone crisis and the 2018 post electoral crisis are instance where hate speech have been highly propagated.


“The underlying causes of hate speech in Cameroon are directly linked to governance issues,” Ngala Desmond said.

The Association Civic Watch believe that though much has been done to mitigate hate speech, disinformation and misinformation in Cameroon, much is still to be done.


Participants at defyhatenow now training where they received Field-Guide-packages and training (Atlantic chronicles)

“I will prescribe one keyword: Synergy,” Ngala Desmond said adding that “we need a synergy between the government of Cameroon and civil society, civil society and civil society, individuals and people on the streets”. A collective action is needed because “hate speech could come in any form”.

No matter the form it takes, the first way in which communities can actually participate in combatting hate speech is by flagging. The founder of Civic Watch in the interview with The Post said “we need to move beyond the bar of individualism and think or act collectively”.

Hate speech it should be noted is harmful not only to an individual but to the entire community. It tears lives and families apart, which constitute the bedrock of every nation.

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