I am Gautier ZOMISSI, attorney at law in Cameroon, a PhD in business law, and a consultant in intellectual industrial property approved by the African Intellectual Property Organization. Since 2008, I have assisted and defended a number of destitute detainees before the courts and tribunals of Cameroon, as part of the PACDET project initiated by the European Union to bring support to the improvement to the living conditions of detainees in Cameroon prisons. It is that experience that has inspired and guided me in the conceptualization of a project called ‘detainee liaison interface’.

The aim of the project is to set up a free telephone line for detainees that would allow them to reach a permanent liaison office, which will be created to keep them updated on the progress of their cases. The phone line will also help to remove obstacles to their releases and undertake measures to advance their judicial proceedings.

This liaison office would also be in an excellent location to utilize new information and communication technologies to create links between different actors of the judiciary and penitentiary system. Efficient communication between these sectors should lead to a reduced waiting time for proceedings and detentions.

The short-term objective of this project is to reduce the number of jailed detainees who have already served their time, as well as those who have been tried and acquitted. The long-term goal is to create a permanently reachable liaison office equipped with a free line to connect the detainees and actors of the judicial system in order to accelerate proceedings and reduce unjustified detention delays.

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