General News of Wednesday, 21 March 2018
Leader of the Ghana-Togo Solidarity Movement, Bernard Mornah, has said the Ghana Police Service’s frequent interruptions in their lawful protests only gives the impression that the government of Ghana is in support of Togo’s President, Faure Gnassingbe’s ill-governance.
In December 2017, Mr. Mornah and some members of the group were arrested for a supposed illegal protest against the continuous rule of Gnassingbe and his disrespect for Togo’s constitutional term limit.
Mr. Mornah said the movement will support Togolese citizens to ensure that Gnassingbe steps down.
He further charged the African Union and other regional bodies to join in making Togo the democratic country it ought to be.
“Since the month of August 2017, the people of Togo have been protesting to demand political change and the end of the Gnassingbe dynasty that has been ruining Togo for the past 51 years. The Ghana-Togo Solidarity Movement is in full support of the struggling people of Togo and for their enjoyment of all the tenets associated with democracy. In this regard, we call for an immediate end to the iron handedness and macho-ism being displayed with reckless abundance by Faure Gnassingbe.
“In Ghana, our incipient rally at Kawukudi park on December 16, 2017, was shamelessly and unlawfully disrupted by the Ghana Police. We were treated as if we were bunch of rascals and subjected to abuse of our rights to assembly, our rights to dignity and other forms of human rights. All materials including printed material have since not been returned by the Police to us. The actions of the Ghana Police give the impression that the government of Ghana supports the ill governance that is being perpetuated in Togo.”
Togo, in recent times, has witnessed a series of protests by opposition parties, calling for the country’s return to the use of the 1992 constitution which imposes limits on presidential terms.
Current president, Faure Gnassingbe, has been in power since 2005, following the death of his father, General Gnassingbe Eyadema, who ruled Togo for many decades.
The ongoing political crisis in the West African country has led to a massive influx of Togolese refugees into Ghana.
26 Togolese arrested for illegal protest in Accra
In October 2017, 26 Togolese nationals were arrested for attempting to stage an unlawful demonstration over the political situation in their country.
According to the Accra Regional Police Operations Officer, Chief Superintendent Kwasi Ofori, about 300 Togolese had to be dispersed lawfully at the Kawukudi Park because their intended action was in clear breach of Ghana’s public order act.
That was the second time that Togolese in Ghana had tried demonstrating in solidarity with efforts back home by the opposition to have presidential term limits.
In a bid to find a lasting solution to the political crisis in Togo, President Nana Addo recently paid a visit to the country where he held negotiation talks with some 14 opposition parties.
The opposition reps have also had meetings with Nana Addo in Ghana during a follow-up visit.