All 25 Togolese have been charged after they were arrested at Nima in Accra, for staging an unplanned protest calling for the exit of their embattled President, Faure Gnassingbe.
At an Accra Circuit Court hearing Tuesday, 25 of them pleaded not guilty to the charges and have been granted bail to the tune of 10,000 cedis each with one surety.
One minor’s plea is yet to be taken. The court had to wait for an interpreter after at least six of them said they only understand French or Hausa.
The suspects were picked up at the Kawukudi park by officers of the Greater Regional Command last Saturday.
The protest formed part of series of actions by dissatisfied Togolese to press home their demand for constitutional reforms in the country.
The suspects including two leaders were part some 300 nationals from Ghana’s immediate eastern neigbour, who had converged in Accra early Saturday to protest over the political tension in Togo.
There are fears the situation in the former French colony could degenerate into a full-blown civil war following bloody clashes between armed security forces and civilians protesting the half a century rule by the Gnassingbe dynasty.
Since the first protests on August 18, eight people have been killed, including a 10-year-old child, three teenagers and two soldiers, while there have been about 100 injured.
Amnesty International said at least 28 people out of more than 100 arrested have been convicted in connection with the protests.
Togo’s opposition has repeatedly called for a limit of two, five-year terms for the president and the resignation of Faure Gnassingbe.
Source: Ghana| Myjoyonline.com