Togo’s opposition coalition boycotts government talks

LOME, Togo – Efforts by the international community to end a political impasse over constitutional reform in Togo were fruitless as Togo’s main opposition coalition boycotted the preliminary discussions, branding the government as “unfit” to lead the talks.

The opposition coalition has been very vocal in exposing the flaws and maladministration of President Faure Gnassingbe who has been in power since 2005.

The past three months have been marred with anti-government marches which has attracted thousands of protesters taking to the streets calling for the president to step down.

The preliminary talks, which were scheduled to take place behind closed doors on Tuesday at the presidency in the capital, Lome, were designed to end the stalemate over constitutional reform to introduce a maximum two-term limit for presidents.

Opposition coalition spokeswoman Brigitte Adjamagbo-Johnson told journalists that the alliance refused to attend the meeting in the face of the government’s “diversionary tactic.”

“We are very vigilant in the coalition, we consult with each other about our joint position,” she said

Adjamagbo-Johnson added that the opposition coalition will not engage in any talks until terms of the preliminary meeting are tailored to their favour.

Only delegations from the UFC party and the president’s UNIR party met on Tuesday, as they resumed the preliminary discussions.

More protests are scheduled to take place on WednesdayThursday and Saturday.


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