« Rock ain’t roll », the electoral fraud starts in Togo with voter registration process

Posted on mars 23, 2013

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In the run up to Togo’s parliamentary elections, the ruling power has initiated a voter’s registration process throughout the country since March 15th 2013. The registration is conducted by a so-called Independent National Electoral Committee (CENI) which was supposed to include members of the opposition but doesn’t. As a matter of fact, the opposition has decided to boycott the CENI because of its unbalanced structure but has however called the citizens to register.

The electoral roll which is a listing of all voters, is together with the electoral card a mechanism to prevent fraud. However, a few days after the voter’s registration started, there are persistent rumors indicating that under-aged citizens and non Togolese citizens are being registered. Regarding that, the president of the CENI has promptly issued a press release stating that citizens should pay attention to the lists and report any issues they may find to them! A kind of « catch me if you can » scenario as everybody knows the commission is responsible for such actions.

snapshot_0003In a video captured at a registration center in Dapaong, a city located in the north of the country, reporters and activists have noticed that some of the very very expensive registration machines provided by the Belgian company Zetes do not work. Computer says « Rock ain’t roll ». Citizens who came to register are confused by such strange machines and just leave. Will they ever return to register? In addition to that, some electoral cards are marked with the signature of the former president of the CENI, Mr. Taffa Tabiou, while the current president is Mrs. Angela Dola AGUIGAH.

Such elements do not contribute to the credibility of the voter’s registration process that is ongoing in Togo right now. Since the advent of multiparty system in Togo in 1992, all previous elections were marred by frauds, political disputes, and police violence against citizens and opposition leaders. Regarding that, « Collectif Sauvons le Togo », a coalition of political parties and human right orgarnizations, is committed to end this « election-fraud-violence-negociation » cycle and had issued an action platform so far ignored by the ruling power of Faure Gnassingbé.

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Posted in: Togo