Togo

Eight trade unionists detained, media outlet suspended

In January 2021, several trade unionists of the newly established Syndicat des Enseignants du Togo (SET - Teachers Union of Togo) were detained following a call for a teachers' strike. On 17th January 2021, Essohanam Baho was arrested in Kara, followed by Elie Adekplor on 19th January 2021. The heavy-handed arrests sent shockwaves within the trade union sector, motivating several trade unionists to hide. Read more  |  Read in French

Eight trade unionists detained, media outlet suspended

Journalist detained, newspaper ordered to cease its operations

On 29th December 2020, armed security forces detained journalist and editor of the newspaper l’Indépendant Express Carlos Ketohou at his residence in Lomé and he was summoned to appear before the Criminal Investigations Central Service on 30th December 2020. The journalist was held for 4 nights on accusations of defamation and was released on 2nd January 2021 Read more  |  Read in French

Journalist detained, newspaper ordered to cease its operations

Regional ECOWAS Court of Justice rules that 2017 internet shutdowns violated freedom of expression

On 25th June 2020, the Community Court of Justice of the West African regional bloc, ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States), ruled that the shutdowns of the internet in Togo in the context of opposition protests in September 2017 were illegal, and violated freedom of expression. Read more  |  Read in French

Regional ECOWAS Court of Justice rules that 2017 internet shutdowns violated freedom of expression

Media regulator suspends three media outlets, two HRDs and one journalist briefly detained

On 21st April 2020, security agents detained two members of the human rights network Collectif des associations contre l’impunité au Togo (CACIT; Collective of Associations against Impunity in Togo) in the vicinity of the residence of opposition leader Agbéyomé Kodjo in Lomé. The two HRDs - Kossi Béni Okouto and Degboe Mawuena Doudji - were on a mission to observe the respect of human rights during the arrest of opposition leader Agbéyomé Kodjo. Read more  |  Read in French

Media regulator suspends three media outlets, two HRDs and one journalist briefly detained

Civil society platform's accreditation to observe the 22nd February presidential elections withdrawn

On the day of the elections, access to messaging services such as WhatsApp, Telegram, and Facebook Messenger appeared to be blocked on two networks on the evening of 22nd February. Prior to the elections, an independent civil society platform saw its accreditation as election observers withdrawn, while staff of the National Democratic Institute (NDI) were expelled from the country. Read more

Civil society platform's accreditation to observe the 22nd February presidential elections withdrawn

Activist Folly Satchivi released from prison, three activists denied entry to Togo

On 16th October 2019, activist, youth leader and HRD Folly Satchivi of the movement En Aucun Cas was released following a presidential pardon issued by president Fauré Gnassingbé. A week prior to the presidential pardon, on 10th October 2019, the Appeal Court in Lomé partially overturned the judgement by a lower court for the offense of 'aggravated disturbance of public order' in January 2019, but found the activist guilty of 'glorification of crimes and offences', and sentenced him to 28 months in prison, with 6 months suspended. Read more

Activist Folly Satchivi released from prison, three activists denied entry to Togo

National Assembly adopts law restricting peaceful assembly

On 7th August 2019, Togo’s National Assembly modified the law that regulates the conditions for the exercise of peaceful meetings and protests of 16th May 2011, restricting the freedom of peaceful assembly in Togo. Read more  |  Read in French

National Assembly adopts law restricting peaceful assembly

Several protests banned, one person killed in opposition protest

Peaceful assemblies continue to be regularly banned, while restrictions - such as the imposition of itineraries and/or a heavy presence of security forces - are placed on the rare cases of protests that are authorised by local authorities. Read more  |  Read in French

Several protests banned, one person killed in opposition protest

Heavy prison sentences for HRDs

On 16th January 2019, the correctional court of Lomé sentenced activist and youth leader Folly Satchivi, of the movement 'En aucun cas', to a prison sentence of 36 months, of which 12 months suspended. Read more  |  Read in French

Heavy prison sentences for HRDs

Opposition protests turn deadly ahead of elections on 20th December

On 5th December 2018, Minister of Territorial Administration Payadowa Boukpessi banned all protests in the streets during the duration of the electoral period on grounds of "very high risk of severe disturbance of public order". Despite the general ban issued by authorities, opposition protests went ahead in Togo's capital Lomé and in other cities throughout the country, with several people killed during protest-related violence between 8th and 1oth December 2018. Read more  |  Read in French

Opposition protests turn deadly ahead of elections on 20th December