AFRICA/TOGO - A legal framework is needed that guarantees peaceful, credible, free and transparent elections

Tuesday, 28 January 2020


Kara (Agenzia Fides) - On the eve of the presidential elections in Togo, the atmosphere between political powers and the Church remains very tense. "As in Ivory Coast, the Catholic Church in Togo is also accused of being in collusion with the opposition. Often it is even called opposition spokesman", said Fr. Donald Zagore, priest of the Society for African Missions (SMA), in the context of the social tensions present in the two African countries.
"In Togo, in a letter from the territorial administration of 16 January 2020, the Catholic Church was accused of lack of impartiality with the consequent obstacle of carrying out an observer role during the next presidential elections in February 2020 - explains Fr. Zagore. In Ivory Coast, after the 114th Plenary Assembly of the Episcopal Conference, the same criticisms were raised about the lack of impartiality of the Catholic Church".
"The fundamental mission of the Church is to defend without any ambiguity the principles of truth and justice, which are fundamental for all men and all peoples - insists the priest. In this commitment the Church must be able to fight with zeal, professionalism and prophetic spirit.
Today the thorny issue of peaceful, credible, free and transparent elections, protected by a legal framework that guarantees criminal sanctions, represents the great challenge not only for the Catholic Church in our African continent, but for all institutions. The Catholic Church cannot exempt itself from defending the right to life by protecting the fundamental principles of truth and justice".
(DZ/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 28/1/2020)