Cameroon

James Elangwe, 87, belongs to the Balues, the only clan in which inheritance passes through the female line. But this doesn't mean that women inherit. Instead, it means that when a man dies, the first son of the man's sister inherits. Elangwe says matrilineal inheritance puts women at a greater disadvantage than patrilineal inheritance because wealth leaves the immediate family. Elangwe's wife belongs to a tribe where inheritance passes from father to son in a patrilineal system. Women cannot...read more

When it comes to inheritance in Africa, patriarchal systems often receive criticism from women and women’s rights advocates. But members of Cameroon’s Balue tribe say that their matrilineal inheritance system is actually worse. Not only can women not inherit property, but it also passes land and belongings out of the immediate family and into the extended family, reports Global Press Institute.

The deportation of a man to Cameroon has been temporarily halted after he refused to board a flight from London to Paris, the BBC has been told. Campaigners say Ediage Valerie Ekwedde's life is at risk, because he is gay, and should not be removed. Mr Ekwedde fears persecution in Cameroon but the UK Border Agency found 'no credible evidence' he was gay.

A shortage of doctors and midwives in Cameroon has drawn more men into midwifery in recent years. While many Christian men and women say they prefer male midwives for their attentiveness, Muslim men and women say that it goes against their religion for a male to attend to a woman during labor. The government introduced the country’s first official midwife training program last year in order to ensure the availability of skilled midwives regardless of sex.

In Cameroon’s Northwest region, citizens, organizations and local officials are taking part in campaigns and speaking out to encourage women to run for office in the legislative and municipal elections anticipated for this year. Though a date has yet to be set for the elections, International Women’s Day this month stirred up excitement for women’s campaigns.

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