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Cameroon: Presidential Candidates Enter Cyberspace


They are sent by Ayah’s Paul campaign team.


Ayah Paul is a former member of the CPDM ruling party. He is also one of the first to use social networks such as Facebook, to communicate with his potential electorate. He admits being influenced by Barack Obama’s campaign. “My target group is youth so I think it is the best way to get in touch with them.

Mobile phones and new technologies mean that youth are always connected with the internet. It has now become easier to communicate with them via the web,” declares Ayah Paul.

Other candidates such as Edith Kah Walla, Pierre Mila Assouté, Vincent Sosthène Fouda or Esther Dang all have Facebook accounts in order to reach out to the younger electorate. It is a first in Cameroon.

Previous presidential campaigns saw candidates depending on conventional media such as radio or television.


Ayah Paul announced his intention to run for Cameroons presidency via facebook and text message.

Every day, his campaign team is posting messages, to help explain his manifesto to potential voters. In addition to his Facebook page, Ayah Paul has created a campaign website, which has been online since February. On this page is his biography and his political plans. Dozens of press articles about him are also being posted on his website.

“I am waiting for the elections results to evaluate my strategy, but just by looking at the number of reactions, I can already say that the message is being more widely spread,” says Ayah.

Twenty year old Valentin Songa will vote for the first time in this election. He is a fan of Ayah on Facebook. “At first I was surprised to receive text messages and posts from the candidates running for presidency. But now I can say I appreciate it and I would say it is a great idea. Sometimes I exchange my views with team members from Ayah Paul’s campaign on Facebook and I find it really nice being able to do so.”

Freedom of speech

In addition to being entertaining, the use of internet during the presidential campaign is also a good way to avoid the media censorship from the Ministry of Communication. “The Internet offers freedom of speech,” confirms Esther Dang, a presidential candidate.

If they were elected, would these candidates censure social networks like it is the case in other countries? “If we govern properly, then we do not need to censure the media,” concludes Ayah Paul.

Source: allafrica news

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