In Togo, there are just a day ahead for the Constitutional Referendum on the 16h December 2018, which is supposed to enable President Faure Gnassingbe until 2030 and he has ruled since 5th February 2018. While his father ruled before until then, Eyadama Gnassingbe ruled between 1967 to 2005. Therefore, this up-coming election is to secure the extension of the reign of the one-family in Togo.
We know, the Gnassingbe isn’t messing around, as he has cracked down on opposition and their demonstration. The Republic Guards and Police Officers has attacked, hurt and killed civilians, as they are standing up against the dictatorship.
To make the means even worse, as there is under a week to the ballots and the referendum. There is also elections for the Parliament on the 20h December 2018 combined with referendum on the 16h December 2018. Because of the activity happening on the ground, as the Republic are getting strapped ahead of the polls.
The Togolese Armed Forces on the 13th December 2018 ordered by 15th December 2018 to recruit the soldiers retired from 2010 to 2018, as they are called up for duty. Major General Kadangha Abalo has ordered this in line with ensuring that the Republic and the President can linger on in power. Without hearing the voice and dissidents of that.
This is a signal of how far the Gnassingbe takes it, not only the recent fatal deaths, the dozens injured for demonstrating against the referendum and the President. But now, the retired soldiers of the recent decade is called up. To ensure and secure the safe passage and create more havoc. As the amounts of soldiers and police officers isn’t enough. That is the reality of such an order.
That can also mean, that there will be plenty more of violence, as these retired soldiers are called-up on request to spread fear and also show the amount of force the President does have. As he shows more strength and capabilities as of recruiting them in the hour of need.
They are clearly tooling-up and preparing, that nothing will come in the way of Gnassingbe. Faure plans to stay, even as his people wants him to go. That is why he is arming, even the retired soldiers, which shows how far he takes it to silence them. Peace.
Eyadama Gnassingbe took power of Togo in 1967, since then he ruled until he stopped breathing. Than, his son Faure Gnassingbe took power on the 5th February 2005. Now on the 20th December 2018, the President and his Party is planning to hold a Referendum giving him endless power until the 2030. If Faure would rule that long, his family would have ruled the Togolaise Republic for 63 years. Today in 2018, they have already been in power for 52 years. If that isn’t long enough.
That is why people are demonstrating and speaking out against the injustice, the lack of respect and the government who are clearly self-seeking, family business enterprise, not there to serve the Togolese. With all of that in mind, the Republic have banned demonstrations up to the Referendum and elections both on the 16th December 2018 and 20th December 2018. On the 20th it is the legislative elections, which the opposition says shouldn’t happen during this political crisis. However, the Republic and the President doesn’t mind. They are securing another fake mandate for their power. They are also anticipating that the French and Chinese will support their siege of power. As it has done in the past.
In the mid-1980s the French sent troops to save Eyadama and they did. Because, he is part of their Françafrique. Part of the French Empire and their influence in Lome. As they would be beneficial economically for Paris and also another place to secure loyalty from. That is what the Gnassingbe family has done. Therefore, when in need, they can always call for soldiers from the French to save them in need. Just like in mid-1980s. They could ask for that again, to secure the ballots their way in 2018. Don’t be shocked if Faure does like his father, he learned it all from him.
That is why Gnassingbe and his police officers, his soldiers are killing civilians who demonstrate, the death-count does matter, each of these fallen men and woman, are blood on the hands of the President. Every one of them are causalities, because they are now openly shooting them and executing them. This is really showing the world of the tyranny of Gnassingbe.
Gnassingbe are using soldiers to kill civilians on the streets, as they are throwing tear-gas and shot at protesters, not only in Lome, but across the Republic. This is a crackdown against the opposition in the days ahead of the Referendum to seal the Presidency for Life and also legislative success for the President. As the Opposition has boycotted the elections and haven’t registered themselves for the votes.
Therefore, Gnassingbe are clearly not listening and using illegitimate force, he is sending soldiers and killing people on the street, as they are voicing out their frustration against him and his rule.
Also, the last few days have proven the lack of value of ECOWAS, who let Gnassingbe go off the chains and militarized the streets. As he is planning to rule until 2030. That means he will have had himself 25 years in power. Trying to compete with his father who ruled for 38 years. This because he is changing the Constitution and giving way for 3 more terms this month.
This is really something else and show how Faure plans to grab it all and not give way. That he isn’t the justified ruler or President. He is just the figurehead who orders the military to silence his population. That is what he does.
The Constitutional Amendment shouldn’t be voted over and Faure should resign. Not that either wil happen, but for everyone he kills. Their souls will be forever connected with Gnassingbe, they are his remains and his legacy. They are the stains that pours out every time he writes with his pen. The stains of blood that drips from his hands and blurs his vision. Because their souls will forever cast misfortune over his reign. Peace.
I know, this is hard nut to crack, even as it was again, a successful demonstration in Lome on the 17th November 2018. The Opposition and the public showed with their feet and performance on the street. That they are tired of the Gnassingbe family rule. The Togolese Republic have been a family enterprise since 1967. They have had the second and third President. There has been no other family to control and have the reign in the Republic.
The Second Generation Gnassingbe took power since 5th February 2005 and are planning this 16th December 2018 for a Referendum to extend his rule into 2030. That is because Faure like his father Eyadame, considers themselves as the owners and stakeholders of Togo. They are the ones who has the God-given right to delegate and operate the Republic without interference until death. If Faure has kids, he is surely planning that one of them will take over his time is due.
However, the Togolais, the Togolese are ready for a just republic, a republic with people representing them and not just the henchmen, the appointed cronies of the Gnassingbe family. Which is how it is today.
The Togolese will not be swayed by ECOWAS or the Group of 5. They was on the streets showing solidarity with the cause, with TogoDebout. They where out saying the time of Faure Gnassingbe has to be over. He has to step down and leave the throne. He is not their ruler and overlord. He is not their owner and they are not his tenants. That is how he acts and appears, however, that is not the case.
The Togolese have again showed to the world. That they are ready for another ruler, another system and the end of the Gnassingbe Dynasty. The march yesterday in Lome, showed again the power of the people, their will and determination in a peaceful manner. That they want an end of the 51 years of Gnassingbe.
It is time for justice, freedom and liberation from the oppression from one family. Peace.
“And that question is: ”How old is 15, really?” No, that’s a good question. I’m not saying that a person is as smart as they’re gonna be at 15. That’s not what I’m saying, man. But I am saying, 15 to me… is old enough to decide… whether or not you want to be pissed on. That’s me. If you can’t make a decision like that by the time you’re 15… then just give up, motherfucker, because life is way harder than that” – Dave Chappelle from ‘For What it’s Worth’ (2004)
I know that Dave Chappelle isn’t a politician, but he is a comedian. But I had to start with him, as this here piece will be about age. Because suddenly now Senate President Sotto in the Philippines, wants to make the legal age for prosecution and able to answer for their crimes down to thirteen (13). As of today, it is already fifteen (15). Therefore, the legal age are already low and early to be able to serve time for possible crimes.
I want to ask the politician, if he could change the legal age for other things, as they should not only have possibility to fine, detain and prosecute the youth, but also other things. Because, why is it just the negative aspect and the positive aspect of life that is given to the thirteen year old. Since, if your opening the gates to make them liable, shouldn’t they be able to do more other things too, without concern of the state?
“MANILA — Alarmed by the rise in the number of crimes now being committed by minors, Senate President Vicente Sotto III is pushing for the lowering of the age of criminal responsibility to 13 years old. In filing Senate Bill 2026, Sotto noted that criminal syndicates are exploiting the provisions of Republic Act 9344 of the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 by using minors in the commission of crimes” (…) “In his explanatory note for Senate Bill 2026, Sotto said, “Due to the continuing challenge in the implementation of RA 9344, as amended, the aforesaid law must be further amended to lower the minimum age of criminal liability in order to adapt to the changing times.” “This bill will finally give clarity to the true intention of the law. The amendment to the law will institutionalize the criminal liability of teenagers who committed serious criminal offense,” Sotto said. He added that not only was the law abused by criminals but the innocence of these youngsters were deliberately taken from them” (Philippines News Agency – ‘ Sotto wants to lower age of criminal liability to 13’ 25.09.2018 link: http://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1049043).
With this Senate President Sotto, shouldn’t they be allowed to run for any public office in an election? Why cannot even a thirteen year old vote in the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections? In the recent election the youngest ones to vote in the SK in 2018 was 15 years old. Therefore, they cannot elect anyone or be eligible to get public office. But behind bars is fine and dandy. They have to wait to be 18 to be a candidate for Municipal Councilor, 21 years to be a candidate either for ARMM Regional Assemblyman or Mayor/Vice Mayor of City. To get into House of Representatives, you have to be 25 years old or in the Senate being 35 years old. If you considering to run for the two highest offices you have to be 40 years old, this being Vice-President and President. Therefore, the youths of age thirteen can be criminal liable, but cannot ever consider to run for office, not even in their local SK Election.
That is why Sotto, should consider his approach, as he can criminalize these youths, but they have no initial power. While it coming to work, the DOLE Guidelines of 1st January 2018 of work for minors states: “Under Republic Act No. 9231, children below the age of 15 are not allowed to be employed in any public or private establishment except when they work directly under the sole responsibility of their parents or guardian or when their participation in public entertainment or public information is essential. In any of the exceptions, the employer, parent or guardian should first secure working child permit from DOLE before engaging the services of the child” (Philippines Information Agency – ‘DOLE issues new guidelines on employment of minors in public entertainment’ 09.11.2017 link: https://pia.gov.ph/news/articles/1001624).
The DOLE has such strict rules about a minor, which is a thirteen years old individual, as they cannot work without guardians approval or the DOLE too as well. Therefore, when they need this to work together with parents or their approval for work, why can the same individual be criminal liable? Shouldn’t it be automatic to be working too?
So, we have quickly figured out they cannot vote, not be eligible to elected or work unless DOLE gives them permit. Should they still be able to become outlaws and get a criminal record? Really?
Just to put it further to prove the dire need to question it, is that a person between 18 to 21 needs consent of marriage from either father, mother or legal guardian to be allowed to married in the Philippines. So a person, cannot without consent of their parents get married, but they can get legal ramifications for their actions? Have Sotto even thought of all of this?
That is why I am writing this, because it is natural as a youth, a teen starting life, not fully matured or even considering of the implications of your acts. Shouldn’t be able to do all adulting first, before you get cost of being grown. However, the Senate President thinks otherwise.
Therefore, Mr. Sotto, should you allow them to work, married or even be eligible to get elected into office? Since you propose them to be criminal liable. If they can get punished by the state, shouldn’t they get all the opportunities of the state as well. Peace.
President Faure Gnassingbe whose been ruling the Republic of Togo since 5th February 2005. As his last term is final, he is now planning to revise the Constitution through a Referendum on the 16th December 2018. That is after ruling for 13 years already. As his father Eyadema Gnassingbe ruled from 1967 until 2005. Therefore, the family enterprise of ruling this nation has been lasting for over 50 years and is in their 51st year.
This is apparently not enough for the entitled family of the Gnassingbe, who are determined to change the Constitution, so that he can rule until 2030. That is 12 more years and the length of rule for one single family would be 63 years of one family takes it all. This a blatant disregard of the citizens and their rights to chose their leadership. They are own blue-blooded none-royal family, which has taken over the Republic and never served the interests of the people. Expect in words to donors and the French elite, where they are shopping luxurious items as they pass by the offices of whoever is the current French President at the time.
There is a reason why there been growing discontent, not only because of the entitlement, but the constant control of the one-party and the family rule, as they are self-serving individuals who are using the army, the national reserves and the rest of state as a given resources to secure them wealth.
That is why the public is discontent, as their rights are violated, their voices are not heard and they cannot decide whose the righteous leader of the Republic. As the entitled first family continues to oppress and occupy the throne. As they have invisible ink written on a deal with the almighty, that only the Gnassingbe family can rule Republic. Because that is how it seems.
This is not how it is supposed to be, as this is just the continuation of an oppressive dictatorship, which is becoming a dynasty. That is lasting and not losing its grip. This new referendum is to change the Constitution to fit the President and his needs. Not to make things better for the Republic. That is what is wrong with Togo and the Presidency at the moment. It is all self-interest and not building a nation. That is why the resistance, the demonstrations and the growing discontent. As they know and rightfully so, that the Togolese Republic is not owned by one family, but is something they all share.
That is why people shouldn’t legitimize the referendum, as it isn’t a choice, but another rubber-stamping the family dynasty and giving Gnassingbe more reasons to stay in power until 2030. Not for the betterment of the Republic. But just for his own selfish reasons, which are of none concern of the Togolese. Peace.
“We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.” – Elie Wiesel
It is now new effort to stifle the voices of opposition against the second generation dictator of Togo. This time the Togolese government is silencing the people, because the President Faure Gnassingbe whose planning his third term and extend the family rule from 1967 until oblivion. The Second Generation Dictator Gnassingbe has held his reign since 2005. Therefore, he has already held power for over 13 years.
That is why he misuses the power, because he has inherited it and doesn’t respect the people, since never had too. This is the reason for the Togolese oppression. Gnassingbe is acting as an entitled brat, who uses power to silence and stop the public from addressing their concerns. That is why the police is arresting and detaining civilians as they protest the injustice of this rule.
That is why this is issued now:
“The government of Togo has banned street demonstrations for the next eight days, during a period when a series of regional activities would be held in the country. The ban will be in effect from Monday, July 23, to August 1. Yark Damehane, Togo’s Minister of Security and Civil Protection, said demonstrations are prohibited “in order to reserve a warm welcome to the illustrious guests and to guarantee the serenity of the work”. Togo will host the first-ever joint summit of the Heads of State of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Economic and Monetary Community of Central African States (CEMAC) on July 30, 2018. This meeting will be followed by the ECOWAS Ordinary Summit the next day” (Newsbreak.ng, 2018).
We can hope that the Togolese demonstrations continues, especially when the ECOWAS is visiting, as the President is the Chairman of the ECOWAS for the moment. It would be humiliating and insulting to his pride, if there was a functioning sit-down strikes, making ghost-towns and also demonstrations in the street. If the police brutality and violence appear during the ECOWAS, this demonstrations will be put on stage world-wide, they will not just be a domestic issue.
That is what is needed, that the Togo Debout is acting up, even as the demonstrations are barred. The Togolese Army will certainly shut it down, just as the police would do too. But it will be humiliating and make the screams for liberation from the shackles of the Gnassingbe family, whose been ruling the Togolese Republic since 1967. That is the reason why the public is tired of being taken for granted.
It is a not a family business, but a republic. A republic that deserves governance and transparency, where the people are respected and ruled by representatives they are picking. Not just the loyalist and cronies of one family.
Faure Gnassingbe and the family doesn’t own, Togo, even if they act like it. Gnassingbe should understand that, but entitlement and arrogance is in the way. The Togolese deserves and has the right to demonstrate for a just society and rulers they picks. Not something you inherit, they should have the ability to elect the righteous leader. Peace.
Newsbreak.ng – ‘Togo Bars Protests Ahead Of ECOWAS Summit’ 22.07.2018 link: https://www.newsbreak.ng/2018/07/togo-bars-protests-ahead-of-ecowas-summit/