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Cameroon: Concern for health of imprisoned poet Enoh Meyomesse

Monday 14 July 2014 - 1:00am

Enoh MeyomessePEN International joins English PEN in expressing its concern for imprisoned poet and activist Enoh Meyomesse following his recent admission to the prison hospital in the overcrowded Kondengui Central Prison, Youandé.

We are currently awaiting further details of his condition. However, in May 2014 Meyomesse was moved to the prison infirmary to be treated for malaria and amoebiasis, and we are seriously concerned that his condition may have deteriorated. We are calling on the Cameroonian authorities to release him immediately and unconditionally on humanitarian grounds.

Cameroonian poet Enoh Meyomesse has been imprisoned since November 2011, and is currently serving a seven-year sentence for supposed complicity in the theft and illegal sale of gold, charges which PEN believes to be politically motivated. It has now been 15 months since Meyomesse’s lawyers succeeded in having his case referred to a civil court for appeal. His appeal was expected to be heard on 20 June 2013 but the hearing was postponed. At least eleven further hearings – including the most recent hearing on 19 June at which the Head of the Political Section from the British Embassy was present – have been postponed due to various legal technicalities.

His next hearing is now scheduled to take place on Thursday 17 July.

For more information on Meyomesse’s case, please see the most recent PEN International case list.

TAKE ACTION: Share on FaceBook, Twitter and other social media

Send appeals

  • Protesting the ongoing detention of writer and activist Enoh Meyomesse on charges that are widely believed to be politically motivated;
  • Expressing concern over his recent hospitalisation and urging that he be given full access to the necessary medical attention;
  • Urging the authorities to release Meyomesse immediately and unconditionally on humanitarian grounds.

Write to:

President Paul Biya
Fax: +237 22 22 08 70
Twitter: @PR_Paul_Biya

Mr Philemon Yang, Prime Minister
Fax: +237 22 23 57 35

Please also send a copy of your appeal to your nearest Cameroonian diplomatic representative (the contact details for Cameroonian embassies abroad are listed here:

(Or you could complete English PEN’s online form. A sample letter is provided but it is always better if you put the appeal in your own words.)

***Please send appeals immediately. Check with PEN International if sending appeals after 14 August 2014***

Spread the word

If you are active on social media, please share information about Enoh Meyomesse’s case with your friends and contacts.

Tweet: Imprisoned poet Enoh Meyomesse has been hospitalised again. Please release him @PR_Paul_Biya! #FreeEnoh #Cameroon @englishpen @pen_int

Buy his book

‘when i get out of here a different man i’ll be / i’ll bear no grudge against the earth / i’ll bear no grudge against the sea’ 

As a result of the numerous postponements and additional months in prison, funds to cover Meyomesse’s legal fees and daily needs – including food, medicine, family visits, and writing materials – are now dwindling. English PEN has published a crowd-sourced translation of his prison poetry, in order to raise funds for him and his family, and greater awareness of his case.

Show your support for Meyomesse – buy your copy today.

For further details please contact Tamsin Mitchell, Africa researcher/ campaigner, Writers in Prison Committee, PEN International, Brownlow House, 50-51 High Holborn, London WC1V 6ER Tel: +44 (0) 207 405 0338 Fax +44 (0) 207 405 0339 email:

#KeepingScore on Cameroon
World Poetry Day 2014 - Take Action for Enoh Meyomesse
PEN International Case List
Jail Verse: Poems from Kondengui Prison