Simon Ateba, a journalist who was detained by security operatives in Cameroon on suspicion of being a spy has been released.
Simon Ateba was reportedly in Cameroon to work on a story about the treatment of Nigerian refugees in Cameroon. He was detained on suspicion of being a spy for the Boko Haram sect and he reports he was held for three days.
He narrated his ordeal on his Facebook page yesterday while confirming that he had been released by the Cameroonian officials.
He wrote on his timeline, After three nights and a day in a stinking cell in Cameroon’s far north and a long questioning at the office of their state security services where they asked me repeatedly “are you a spy for Boko Haram?”, I said no,”
“they asked again, “so you’re not a spy for Boko Haram?” I said “Sir as I said before, I am not a spy, not a spy for Boko Haram, ISIS or any other terrorist organisation or country. I am just a powerless journalist with a keyboard and a camera travelling the world to tell little stories of powerless people.
“Then the state security service agents took me to my hotel room around midnight but without my passport, and phones. I was then taken to the office of their general delegation 30 minutes ago (Tuesday) and made to explain again to the top cop.
“My passport and phones have been given back to me, and I am free to travel out. Sometimes this profession called journalism sucks, but looking back, I am happy I am a journalist. I will just get back to the cell to give some mosquito stuff and food to the three guys there who taught me to count from one to ten in Fulfulde, the language spoken in northern Cameroon. I thank God,”