IFJ Pays Tribute to Leading Cameroonian Journalist Killed in Car Accident in US

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today added its voice

to that of journalists in Africa and around the world who have been shocked by

the news of the death of leading Cameroonian journalist Pius Njawe who has

been killed in a car accident in the United States.

"Pius Njawe was a great friend of press freedom and also

a loyal supporter of journalists, not just in Africa,

but around the world," said Aidan White,

IFJ General Secretary. "As an editor he was courageous and as an

employer of journalists he always respected the need for decent working

conditions -- one of the key foundations of a democratic media culture. We mourn his loss and we send our

sympathy to the journalists of Cameroon."  

According to press reports, Njawe was killed on Monday 12 July as the car

he was travelling in broke down on the free way and was hit from behind by a

truck, killing him and another passenger. He was in the country to attend a

conference in Washington organised by the Cameroonian Diaspora on the political situation in Cameroon.


Pius Njawe was editor -in -chief of le Messager newspaper

which he created in 1979. He led various campaigns for press freedom and independent

journalism in Cameroon

and, as a result, was arrested on many occasions by the authorities.


The Syndicat

national des journalistes du Cameroun(SNJC),

an IFJ affiliate, said in a statement that Pius Njawé was one of the negotiators

of the national collective convention which was signed in 2008. He was very

much instrumental in the negotiation process, at a time when most of his fellow

editors deliberately boycotted meetings as an attempt to frustrate the process,

the statement says.

Pius Njawe had over recent years taken a keen interest in road safety in Cameroon after his wife died a few years ago,

also in a road accident between Yaoundé and Douala, reports say.

For more information

contact the IFJ at   +32 235 2207

The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists

in 125 countries worldwide