The Togolese government on Thursday banned demonstrations by the opposition coalition.
In a statement cited by AFP, Togolese Minister of Territorial Administration, Payadowa Boukpessi said the protest poses ‘’ very high risk of serious disturbances to public order’‘.
The protest was scheduled between December 8 and 18 against holding of the December 20 legislative elections.
The fourteen parties of the main opposition coalition, which did not submit lists and denounce irregularities, on Wednesday called for new demonstrations to demand halting the electoral process.
According tot the statement, the government fears that the caravans and procession of the opposition coalition will clash with those of the political parties participating in the legislative polls.
The opposition immediately reacted on Thursday morning and assured that the demonstrations will go as planned.
The opposition coalition is calling for constitutional reforms to allow the limitation of presidential and legislative terms,recomposition of the office of the National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI) and the resumption of all activities already conducted by the electoral body.
Togo has been going through a serious political crisis over a year, with massive demonstrations calling for the resignation of President Faure Gnassingbé. Gnassingbé succeeded his father in 2005 who had ruled Togo for thirty eight years.
Evangelical, Presbyterian and Methodist Churches of Togo on Wednesday called for ‘‘postponement of the legislative polls for a few months”, while denouncing the “non-consensual conditions” in which the poll is to be held.