Lome, 13 December, 2019 / 2:36 am (ACI Africa).
As eligible citizens of the West African country of Togo prepare to participate in a poll slated to take place next February to elect their President, the Archbishop Emeritus of Lome, Philippe Kpodzro has launched an operation to solicit funds to aid a single yet-to-be-identified Presidential candidate in view of ensuring a veritable democratic and competitive contest that would see the beneficiary contender “win this type of election.”
“This Fund, to a range from 04 to 07 billion CFA (US$6.8million to US$11.8million), will allow us for once to set up the appropriate logistics to win this type of election, whose organizers, recognized by their poor history as licensed thieves, have done everything in advance to claim victory, a victory of which they will be the first to feel seriously ashamed,” Archbishop Philippe Kpodzro told journalists at a press conference in Togo’s capital, Lome, Tuesday, December 10.
Titled “Archbishop Kpodrzo Funds”, the initiative is expected to facilitate the gathering of “sufficient resources to support a single candidate from the entire democratic opposition, finance his campaign in a unified dynamic, ensure the representation and full support of his delegates in the 9,000 polling stations.”
The funds, whose collection is set to be through five bank accounts, would also be “used to set up citizen follow up committees around all polling stations in order to discourage any fraudulent maneuvers and ensure the compilation of the results, polling station by polling station, for a clear victory of the candidate,” the Togolese Prelate said.
In May 2019, Togo's parliament approved a constitutional change permitting long-standing President Faure Gnassingbe to potentially stay in office until 2030. This was despite widespread protests calling for the end of his family's decades-long grip on power, Aljazeera news reported.