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Indigenous Communities Lend Voice To Web Influencers To Raise Awareness On Deforestation, Rights

It is against this backdrop that Greenpeace Africa, Green Development Advocates launched the campaign with influential web actors on August 17.

The web influencers would raise awareness on the fight against deforestation in Cameroon, as well as the protection of the rights of indigenous communities, the first victims of deforestation.

This comes at the heels of the celebration of the International Day of Indigenous People on the theme “The role of indigenous women in the preservation and transmission of traditional knowledge”.

At the invitation of Greenpeace Africa, three Cameroonian web influencers will be for the next 30 days,  ambassadors of the defense  of indigenous communities’ rights, and the preservation of Cameroonian forests.  They are Betatinz, Grand Lawrenzo and Future Milliardaire , some well-known figures on the social media landscape in Cameroon, notably Facebook, TikTok and Instagram.

“The collaboration aims to  amplify the voices of indigenous forest communities, whose rights are constantly violated by activities with high pressure on the forests, such as agro-industrial concessions, like the one awarded Camvert,” says Ranece Jovial Ndjeudja, Forest  Campaign Manager at Greenpeace Africa. 

Indeed, for nearly two years, Greenpeace Africa and GDA have been campaigning against Camvert, which has been granted a provisional concession of approximately 40,000 hectares, extendable to 60,000 hectares, to plant oil palm. And on the ground, the effects continue to torment the local indigenous communities, especially women, who are finding it increasingly difficult to contribute to the preservation and transmission of traditional knowledge due to the gradual and alarming disappearance of the forest.

This is exactly what Marie Thérèse Anzouer, an indigenous Bagyeli woman, deplores when she says: ” Nice words have not yet succeeded in transforming our daily lives. The 2022 edition of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous People focused on the crucial role that we women play in transmitting traditional values, but on the ground, everything that is the essence of these traditional values, namely the forest, is disappearing day by day.” 

To amplify their voice and their cry of alarm in the days to come, these influencers will raise awareness among their followers about environmental protection and the defence of the rights of indigenous communities. Beta Tinz, a web influencer taking part in the campaign, said, “We are all concerned about environmental issues. I am a woman and I know how difficult the economic situation is for me as a wife and mother at home. I can’t imagine the ordeal that indigenous women go through because of the cutting of trees in the forest, their main source of income. This is why I agreed to join this noble cause. ” 

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