Togo


    Week in Review: Human rights activist awarded as dictators cling on
    15.10.17
    François Sergent, JusticeInfo.net

    As we saw this week, transitional justice still appears far from countries such as Togo, Egypt and Burundi, whose people are still struggling under authoritarian regimes disrespectful of human rights and fundamental freedoms. In Togo, there is an open crisis between the dictatorial Gnassingbé dynasty that has been in power for more than 50 years and the population who aspire to democracy and rule of law. “In this small West African country, the factors for rebellion are being put in place,” writes our Lomé correspondent Maxime Domegni. “On the streets, the young people no longer hide their...

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    Togo “purification” leaves bitter taste for many
    11.07.17
    Maxime Domegni, West Africa correspondent

    In Togo, the transitional justice process put in place by the authorities seems to be dividing people more than it is reconciling them. And it was amid controversy that the High Commission for Reconciliation and National Unity (HCRRUN) organized so-called “purification” ceremonies in the country from July 3 to 9. A week of so-called purification in Togo ended on Sunday July 9 with a Christian service in the capital Lomé attended by the Prime Minister, members of the government, national institutions and the High Commission for Reconciliation and National Unity (HCRRUN). As on preceding days...

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    Togo purges its violent past with voodoo ceremonies
    06.07.17
    AFP

    The voodoo follower stood bare-chested with beads around his neck in the centre of the public square in Bè, a working class district of Togo's capital, Lome. A dozen priests surrounded him as he made incantations, threw soil and water, and gave an offering to the gods. In the silence, a ram and a cockerel were burnt alive. "It's over, human blood must not flow again on the land of our ancestors after the purification ceremony for the country," the follower said. Twenty priestesses, naked from the waist up, sang and danced before spraying the watching crowd with water "blessed" by the divinities from voodoo convents. "A lot of ceremonies have taken place in convents. The country is now...

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    Togo Still Waiting for Democratic Transition
    31.07.16
    Maxime Domegni, correspondent in Lomé

    Togo seems as far as ever from deep political reform, as signalled at a workshop of the High Commission for Reconciliation and National Unity during the week of July 11 to 15. This body was set up two years ago and is supposed to support democratic transition. In 56 years of independence, this West African country has been ruled with a firm hand for 49 years by the same biological and political family, the Gnassingbé family. At the moment, the country’s public institutions and the Constitution (which since 2012 no longer limits presidential mandates) are not conducive to democratic...

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    Togo Transitional Justice Leaves Much to be Done
    01.03.16
    Maxime Domegni, Lomé correspondent

      The transitional justice process in Togo has not allowed its citizens to know more about the perpetrators of the violence that has scarred the country ever since the struggle for independence. Togo has been ruled by the Gnassingbé family dynasty since 1967. And reconciliation still seems a long way off.   After 500 people were killed in electoral violence in 2005, the United Nations recommended that Togo launch a transitional justice process. The current head of State, Faure Gnassingbé, had just seized the presidential seat left vacant by the death of his father Gnassingbé Eyadema, who...

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