AFRICA/TOGO - The Bishops: "The frustration of civil society is a bomb that may explode"

Thursday, 4 May 2017 bishops   justice  

Lomé (Agenzia Fides) - "The frustration of Togolese civil society is a bomb ready to explode on the first occasion", say the Bishops of Togo in their Paschal message. "Let us recognize that behind the appearance of peace and tranquility, Togo is living a very negative moment: its sons and daughters are increasingly disappointed: they no longer know what path to take to get out of the present situation and how to reach peace: their future seems to be blocked".
Togo has a difficult political and institutional situation where economic and social life offers few prospects for young people while the Country celebrated its 57th anniversary of national independence on 27 April.
The Bishops emphasize that the principle of political change "even before a democratic value is above all a necessity of natural order". In 2005 after the death of Gnassingbé Eyadema, who had led the Country for 38 years, his son, Faure Gnassingbé, succeeded and has been leading the Country’s fate for 12 years. The Bishops are contrary to extending the number of presidential mandates, as in other African countries, for example Burundi.
The lack of a clear change raises frustration and the State has proved incapable of offering real social justice by redistributing the wealth of the Country. "The root of Togolese evil", the Bishops write is "the inversion of public function": instead of protecting the poor, the State favors the rich who do nothing but increase their wealth.
The debate on constitutional reforms is taking place in the Country. The Episcopal Conference invites politicians not to miss this opportunity to adopt the expected reforms of the population, in particular the limitation of the presidential mandate. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 4/5/2017)