Despite Faure Gnassingbe’s long record of human rights violations, the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) decided to gift Faure with $35 million. Despite the talk about reforms in Togo and improvements in governance, Faure has demonstrated once again the true nature of his dictatorial government. Togo’s MCC Program began recently as the government in Togo is coming under increasing scrutiny over the arrest and interrogation of opposition leaders Brigitte Kafui Adjamagbo-Johnson and Gérard Dodji Djossou. This is the latest example of political repression in a nation that has been under the rule of an oppressive dictatorship since 1967.
Adjamagbo-Johnson is not only a political activist who has been very critical of the government of Togo, but she is the first woman in Togo’s history to run for president. This makes her arrest even more significant because it comes at a time when the regime in Togo has been touting its inclusion of women in government, including the appointment of Togo’s first female prime minister. As is usually the case with the dictatorship in Togo, these apparent reforms are done in an attempt to improve the government’s public image, particularly among the international community. The reality is that the regime in Togo is still as repressive as it has ever been.
The arrest of Adjamagbo-Johnson and Djossou is also a reminder of the fact that despite these ongoing human rights abuses in Togo, institutions such as the MCC are still willing to support and even fund the government of Togo to help further the charade of progress and governmental reform in Togo.
Dwayne is the author of several books on the history and experiences of African people, both on the continent and in the diaspora. His books are available through Amazon. You can also follow Dwayne on Facebook and Twitter.