TFA, a minor, was raped in Bamenda in the North West Region of Cameroon in 2012. Despite compelling medical evidence that the girl was raped, the authorities in Cameroon did not carry out an effective investigation into the incident or prosecute the perpetrator. We filed our admissibility and merits briefs before the African Committee of Experts on the Rghts and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC) on November 14, 2015. We are waiting for guidance from the ACERWC on the next steps. The case complains of violations of the right to a remedy, right to dignity among others.
15 March 2017: The ACERWC notified IHRDA that the case had been declared admissible and would be considered for hearing on the merit at the ACERWC’s 29th Ordinary Session billed for 28 April – 9 May 2017 in Lesotho.
15 April 2017: Hearing postponed to the 30th Ordinary Session in December 2017 in Sudan, as Cameroon requested for more time to submit its response.
11 December 2017: Case heard before the ACERWC at its 30th Ordinary Session in Sudan.
6 September 2018: The ACERWC notified the plaintiffs of its decision taken at the 31st Ordinary Session held from 24 April to 6 May 2018 in Bamako, Mali. The decision shows the ACERWC found Cameroon in violation of several obligations, notably protection against child abuse and torture, and against non-discrimination. The ACERWC calls on Cameroon to immediately ensure that the perpetrator is prosecuted and punished; to pay TFA compensation for damages worth 50 million CFA (approximately USD 90,000 – ninety thousand); and to put in place a series of structural measures for the elimination of all forms of violence against children, including enactment and implementation of relevant legislation, training of competent officers/authorities, creation of specialized mechanisms, as well as sensitization and education of the public.