AFRICA/TOGO - The Bishops: "May the next elections be peaceful, free and fair"

Wednesday, 27 November 2019 bishops   elections   politics  

Lomé (Agenzia Fides) - "At a certain point in the history of our nation, voices were raised to reproach the Catholic Church for maintaining a complicit silence in certain socio-political situations. Today it may seem that some feel the opposite sentiment", the Bishops of Togo write in their message with regards to the elections to be held next year.
"The Bishops' Conference of Togo has never ceased, when the circumstances require it, to proclaim the truth, to denounce errors and to illuminate the consciences of their fellow citizens on the path to follow for the integral development of our Country" underlines the message, sent to Agenzia Fides.
The Bishops take on the concerns of the Togolese in whose memory "the bitter memory of the scenes of violence and horror that, unfortunately, have often characterized the past elections" is alive. "The Togolese are anxious; fear the repetition of the scenario to which we are accustomed to electoral consultations in our country: elections contaminated by irregularities followed by protests, popular demonstrations, bloody repression, dialogue and agreements not maintained, elections that follow without real progress, etc. ", continues the message.
The cause of this situation falls on the current leadership of the Country, but also on the opposition, unable to build a viable alternative for alternating power. "To this lack of political will to build a rule of law and democracy, is added the fact of having an opposition in Togo that does not seem to know what it wants and gives the impression of lack of vision. In fact, the objectives around which seasonal, sporadic and circumstantial alliances between opposition parties have often been concluded have always proved to be the causes of their implosion", say the Bishops who underline that the same scenario is being repeated now, with "an avalanche of presentations of candidacies by people apparently more concerned with their own personal interests than to conquer and exercise power for the good of the whole nation".
After having launched an appeal to the majority and opposition to operate so that the vote is peaceful, free and transparent, the Bishops conclude by asking the faithful to pray for the good of Togo with Psalm 120, with the intercession of Mary, Lady of Peace, of Saints John Paul II and John XXIII. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 27/11/2019)