Hate speech, a veiled weapon of mass destruction. social media the main instrument. CHRDA creates awareness in Cameroon

Hate speech has eaten our inner most conscience of loving words and will continue to cause the disaster in mankind if we do not fight against its aggravation within the globe. We, as a people we ought to keep on riding on a positive part to acquiring and conquering the minds of men toward a positive thinking by spreading this summarize  four word message “No to hate speech”  in our social media platforms so that we can create an awareness of the negative impact of hate speech in our society.

The question remains, what is hate speech? From the legal mind perspective, there is no precise definition that can be attributed to hate speech. But the concept of hate speech can be explain as words which hurt an individual or a group of people to the extend of inciting violence or war between the perpetrators and victims

Follow the ideas of organizations like Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa (https://chrda.org) and CIVICUS (https://civicus.org) and spread the message of #NotoHateSpeech, #Yestolovingspeech, #Endhate, Our words can destroy or build, #Bepositive, #TogetherWeSpeak, help be a voice for some people, better remain silent than to talk hate speech etc.

The social media world is full of hate speeches and with the advancement of technology, it is becoming a disaster in the communication world as traditional media platforms are continually losing grip to social media. 

Thus, since people now are able to sit anywhere and propagate fake news using false account in our society, it is very difficult to monitor and sanction perpetrators of hate speech on social media platforms. 

The only means which we can use to limit the use of hate speech in our society is no other means than to organize forums like the SPEAK 2018 which is a space initiative of CIVICUS in partnership with other nonprofit making organizations within the globe like https://chrda.org to combat the use of hate speech. Such forums will creates an impact in the minds of men in that people will be able to have lectures on the negative effect of hate speech and how to control it aggravation in our various communities.

Hate speech had created wars, hate speech is creating wars and hate speech will create wars if care is note taken, let us join Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa (https://chrda.org) and say NO to hate speech and YES to love speech in Cameroon. Let us denounce hate speech for it has created and inflict both physical and psychological pain and sufferings on mankind. Articulates no words that can incite hatred against a group of people, against individuals, against a tribe, against a religion, against a nation or against public figures for it creates hatred in the minds of men

The historic week worth to describe as a week of victory in a fight against the use of hate speech in the Cameroonian community and the world in general is that which the Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa (https://chrda.org) in partnership with CIVICUS (https://civicus.org) organizes and executes a three day forum to combat hate speech in Cameroon with the aim of creating awareness of what hate speech had cause, what it is causing and what it can cause in our society of today.  Worthy to note is the fact that the SPEAK 2018 campaign took place around the world simultaneously as from the 16 to the 18 of November 2018.

On that faithful day, dated the 16th of November 2018, the SPEAK 2018 campaign opens in Cameroon with the aid of Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa and CIVICUS in partnership with other domestic organizations and was a grateful day as the speakers focus on one message, #Notohatespeech.

Barrister Agbor Nkongho with experience and from the activist perspective in the field  fighting against hate speech, drill the youths toward the part of nonviolence as he differentiates between criticizing and the use of hate speech. The founder and CEO of CHRDA laid more emphasis on the fact that there must exist opposing parties in our society of today but that we should learn how to talk with our opponent in a nonviolence manner. By so doing criticize them either by asking reasonable questions which impliedly may lead to the positive outcome or by remaining silence than to talk hate speech against our opposing parties which may lead to violence. Thus, we should criticize in a responsible way but we should not use hate speech as criticism  

The Nigerian consulate, H.E Ibrahim Bashir who happen to have experience from his home country on the effect of hate speech, brief the youths with a need for love speech in the social media space. He reiterated that if the social media space is clear off hate speech, the job of fighting hate speech will be 60% gone and the 40% left will be based on our personal initiative toward the fight against hate speech. Thus, his presentation was very much appreciated by youth leaders present as he urge the youths to take the fight to their social media platforms

Nigeria consulate, H.E Ibrahim Bashir

Prof. Enow Tanjong as an expertise in the field of battling hate speech in the Cameroonian community clearly expressed with impartiality that individuals, institutions, the government authorities and the world at large need to stand as one united people in a fight against hate speech. It is from hate speech that wars were created; it from hate speech that we are fighting wars and it is from hate speech that wars will be created. Let us realize ourselves, till ourselves to reality and focus on one goal which will lead to and lay a foundation of peace building for our words will be loving in nature if we say No to hate speech and Yes to loving speech. Prof. Enow Tanjong in his presentation made it clear that human beings are by nature contains both virtues and vices which we ought to distinguish with care. While giving the examples of virtues like kindness, honesty, sincerity, love, etc and examples of vices like prostitution, wickedness, greed, dishonesty, rape, etc. Prof. Enow Tanjong plead with the youth leaders present at the forum to do all it takes to the spread the message of love 

The professor and the university lecturer in the department of journalism and mass communication, university of Buea in the Southwest Region of Cameroon also highlight some causes or sources of hate speech in our society. For example, the rise of ethnicity, the rise of extremism, the fear of political and social change, lack of adequate psychological attention and stereotypes which has eaten deep into our minds. 

Prof. Enow Tanjong giving lectures on hate speech

According to the university don, hate speech can cause serious damages in our society like dehumanization, intimidation, victimize the targeted group of people, incubates brutality against a group of people, degrades dignity in mankind, and also debases an individual or a group of people. For these numerous foe impacts of hate speech in our to be limited or completely wipe out, Prof. Enow Tanjong did not hesitate to highlights what he terms “Putting brakes on hate speech” or in other words how to limit  the use of hate speech in our society. That is, for us to limit the use of hate speech in our society we need to do the following according to Prof. Enow Tanjong. 

Create facts checking organizations. That is, both the government and civil societies should try and create organizations to check the instances of hate speech in the Cameroonian community.                                                                                                        

There should also be the creation of civil society tracking organizations

There should be peace journalism. That is journalist should try by all possible means to turn the hate speech perpetrated by people into loving speech before reporting         

We as human beings should try and build up trust. That is for example, do not make secrete talks public which may cause hatred, thus propagating hate speech.

The market forces should try and be sanctioning the use of hate speech by not buying products like newspapers which preach hate speech, reading online news which preach hate speech and so on

Another amazing speaker in the name of Barrister Awungjia who enlighten the youths leaders on the laws regulating free speech and sanctioning hate speech on and offline. Though she did mention that there is no precise definition of hate speech in law, she define hate speech as words which hurt an individual and or a group of individuals  which may lead to conflicts and can also be referred to as fighting speech. According to the Barrister at law, some laws impliedly regulating hate speech in Cameroon are, Cameroon terrorism law 2014, 2010 cybercriminal law of Cameroon, the National Communication Council in Cameroon etc. while giving examples of cases which  the authorities have taken into account, the barrister lament that there is no exact law in Cameroon sanctioning hate speech directly but she further explain that for somebody to better  legal grounds when it comes to hate speech, he/she must sue under defamation, abuse, false report etc.

Categories: Centre for Human Rights and Democracy in Africa

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