Lome, 02 March, 2020 / 8:27 pm (ACI Africa).
Days after the retired Archbishop of Togo’s Lomé Archdiocese, Philippe Fanoko Kpodzro denounced the preliminary results of the presidential election in the country and called for protests, the Bishops in the West African nation have, in a collective statement, denied claims that they have abandoned their “elder brother.”
“Since the proclamation of the provisional results, the Togolese Bishops’ Conference has not remained inactive in the face of the situation of Archbishop Emeritus Philippe Fanoko Kpodzro,” the Bishops stated in their March 1 statement in which they emphasize that they have “not abandoned the Bishop, their elder brother, to his “sad fate”, as some of the faithful mistakenly think.”
The “sad fate” is in reference to the blockade, which the government security agencies mounted on the roads leading to the residence of the Archbishop, deterring him from leaving the premises to participate in the march he had spearheaded.
The move to block the Archbishop from leaving his residence is “not only a serious infringement of his freedom of movement, but it also prevents the functioning of the health center adjacent to this place,” members of the Episcopal Conference of Togo (CET) decried in their collective statement.
The security barrier also prevented priests “from celebrating the Eucharist in the chapel of the health center for Religious, service personnel and the sick,” the Bishops further bemoan.