Article by Salma Amadore
On November 31, 2019, Journalists and Slammers joined the #defyhatenow initiative through an exchange session that took place at the Djeuga Palace in Yaoundé partnership with UNESCO. After a brief presentation of the program, #defyhatenow Cameroon and the various participants from Douala and Yaounde, joined started the campaign that would lead to a retreat afterward.
The first part of the campaign focused on the dangers of hate speech in society. Participants explored issues of definition of hate speech, the particularity of Cameroon, the dangers of hate speech and the actions to be taken to reduce hate speech. In this session, we gathered from some participants, their experience with hatred in the form of insults or tribalism. The genesis of some forms of hate speech was identified and an alert has been reported concerning schools where many cases have been reported.
In the second half, we held talks with the audience on hate speech on social networks and a cross-generational approach. Participants were able to talk about intergenerational clashes and the spread of hate speech Off and Online. A section on the different methods used by each generation was discussed followed by a question and answer session.
The working group led by Mr. Ndih Hugues of UNESCO made it possible to explore how to reduce and/or curb Off and Online hate speech by actions that each of the present participants could achieve. They shared their perceptions and experiences of hate and proposed a set of solutions to end it in schools, the street, major events, Online and even within their families.