Togo’s parliament considers constitutional reform crucial

Togo’s parliament is expected to begin work on the country’s constitutional reform bill by Friday amid series of protests across the West African nation calling for an end to the 50-year Gnassingbe dynasty.

The head of the country’s national assembly on Wednesday said that government bills will be worked on from Friday despite earlier expectations that constitutional reform discussions would take place on Tuesday.

National Assembly president Dama Dramani said “We are in an urgent situation. That’s why we are going to disregard our procedures to end the session tomorrow (Thursday) and Friday we will look at the government’s bill.”

He called on the constitutional law commission that examines proposed changes to look at the bill and make recommendations as quickly as possible, according to the AFP report.

The United Nation has backed demands for constitutional reforms including term limits for the president to prevent escalation of the current political crisis in the country.

The President of Togo, Faure Gnassingbe is coming under immense pressure to give in to agitations from Togolese protesting against his family’s ruling dynasty.

Opposition supporters have demanded for an end to the president’s family dynasty and the need for a new constitution. Recent protests have been seen as the biggest challenge to the Gnassingbe dynasty in many years.

Faure Gnassingbe took over from his father Eyadema 12 years ago after he died while in power for 38 years. He has since won elections in 2005, 2010 and 2015 but got the two-term limit for presidents scrapped a year ago to allow him to further prolong his rule.




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