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Beating death of LGBT activist Eric Lembembe in Cameroon

Eric O. Lembembe
Eric Ohena Lembembe

LGBT activist and reporter Eric Ohena Lembembe was beaten to death over the weekend, LGBT activists in Cameroon announced today.

Fellow activists said they found his bloody, lifeless body early today at his home in Yaoundé,  Cameroon.

Investigations by human rights defenders are under way to discover who was responsible for the crime.

At his death, he was serving as the local executive director of the Cameroonian Foundation For AIDS (Camfaids), an advocacy group fighting against AIDS and for human rights of LGBT people in Cameroon, which is one of the world’s most violently anti-gay nations.

Lembembe, a regular contributor to the Erasing 76 Crimes blog, was the author of one of the blog’s most popular articles, “What traditional African homosexuality learned from the West.”

That article is included in the book From Wrongs to Gay Rights, along with his articles about Roger Mbede, who was imprisoned because of an amorous text message to a man; Franky Djome and Jonas Kumie, who were imprisoned because they are a transgender couple; anti-gay blackmailer/extortioner Albert Edward Ekobo Samba; and the homophobic attack on last year’s IDAHO celebration in Yaoundé.

He formerly worked as a writer and editor for the monthly Tribune du Citoyen in Cameroon.

A proper obituary and reports on the investigation of his death will be forthcoming later.

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Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2011, he launched Erasing 76 Crimes and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, including the Erasing 76 Crimes news site and the African Human Rights Media Network. Contact him via Twitter @76crimes or by email at info@76crimes.com. Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.

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