CAMEROON : FOOTBALL AND SEXUAL BLACKMAIL, AN UNBREAKABLE SILENCE?

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Another shocking sex scandal has emerged in Cameroonian football, as Coton Sport de Garoua suspends one of its officials amidst allegations of sexual blackmail and harassment. This scandal brings to light a deeply rooted practice that seems to be prevalent in various football clubs across the country and africa.

Following last year’s scandal in Bafoussam, where several victims bravely came forward to expose the abuses they were subjected to by their coach, the issue of sexual misconduct in Cameroonian football is still vivid.

According to a former player, who chose to remain anonymous, this practice stems from the desire for fame. He explains, « Most individuals involved in these scandals are seeking success. The devil promises them fame, but in return, they must give up their souls. Once they are involved, there’s no turning back, and to maintain their position, they are forced to initiate others. It becomes a never-ending chain. »

Another professional player, also opting for anonymity, sheds light on the prevalent dark side of football, stating, « The truth is, you cannot reach the top without engaging in shady activities. It’s an unfortunate reality that will never cease. » In an investigative report published by French journalist Romain Molina on November 3, 2022, numerous cases of sexual abuse committed by football officials were documented, shedding light on why this practice continues to persist.

Romain Molina, French journalist.

He highlighted that many victims are afraid to speak out, while male players who are victims often feel ashamed. Additionally, powerful football clubs with strong political connections contribute to the silence. On the other hand, vulnerable young individuals do not know where to seek help.

Speaking to a sports journalist in Africa, he emphasized, « Sexual scandals in football clubs, whether in Cameroon or anywhere else in the world, are not new. However, if we continue to ignore the issue, it will persist indefinitely. »

He stressed on the importance of breaking the silence, stating, « Keeping silent only allows these scandals to fester. We hope that victims of sexual misconduct, both male and female, in football and other sports in Cameroon, find the courage to speak out. »

With the temporary suspension of the technical director of one of Cameroon’s leading football clubs, the question remains: will the issue of sexual scandals ever come to an end ?

FRU William.

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