June 20, 2011
Popular Cameroon artiste Lapiro back in court
By BISONG ETAHOBEN
A leading Cameroon musician who was recently released after serving a jail term is back in court.
Lambo Sandjo Pierre Roger, popularly known by his nom d’artiste as Lapiro de Mbanga has filed a case against the Chief medical officer of the Douala Central Prison where he served, for denying him access to medical attention while in person.
Lapiro de Mbanga was released on April 8, 2011 after serving a three-year prison sentence for inciting the Mbanga population to violence during the February 2008 “hunger riots” in Cameroon.
When the matter came up at the Douala magistrate’s court on June 16, Lapiro was summoned by presiding Magistrate Assiyatou Abdoulaye to present evidence to back up his accusations against the accued medical officer. Upon presentation of some documents, the magistrate pronounced them not sufficient evidence and asked Lapiro to call witnesses to sustain his claim.
Through his lawyer, Lapiro has asked for more time to gather his witnesses.
The case was adjourned to September 16, 2011.
Lapiro de Mbanga, easily Cameroon’s most popular musician was jailed for three years plus a fine of $560,000 for inciting the Mbanga population, where he is a traditional ruler, to attack and destroy government institutions and properties.
On appeal however, most of the witnesses government used to back their case that led to the imprisonment of Lapiro rescinded their testimonies and said they testified against Lapiro due to pressure, blackmail and intimidation from government. This notwithstanding, the Lapiro sentence and fine were withheld until he served out the prison term.
Lapiro has however continued to insist that he was targeted by government because of his very popular musical album Constitution Constipé (Constipated Constitution ) whose lyrics condemned an amendment to the Cameroonian constitution cancelling the two-term presidential term limit that cleared the way for President Paul Biya to vie for re-election past two terms.
Article source www.africareview.com