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Thursday, September 07, 2017

Togo shuts down Internet


In what has become a new vest for African leaders, the government of Togo has reportedly shut down the service of the Internet in its domain, reports ITRealms.

Reports reaching our newsroom showed that Faure Gnassingbé, President of Togo, has approved of the shut down due political protest over his plans to change the presidential term of office.

Reacting to the Togo shut down, yesterday, the Executive Director at Paradigm Initiative, Mr. Gbenga Sesan, noted with dismay that network disruptions cum restrictions and other digital rights violations are increasingly popular among African leaders.

Wondering how citizens and civil society organisations are managing the situation.

“It’d be great to also know if anyone is documenting the human angle stories arising from this shutdown, especially as it’s coming after political protests started,” he lamented.

Sesan pointed out that in Cameroon, people traveled really far to get access, while in Gambia, there was loss of life reported because of lack of access to Internet services that could have helped to save a mother and child.

These are in spite of the economic implications and rights-based arguments around these violations.

Condemning the Internet shutdown in Togo, Sesan called on the government to respect the citizens’ digital right and restore internet services.

In a tweet @ParadigmHQ, Sesan says, his organisation “deplores the internet shutdown in Togo and calls on the government to respect citizens' digital right & restore internet services.”

ITRealms recalls that Togo is a West African nation on the Gulf of Guinea, reputed for its palm-lined beaches and hilltop villages. Koutammakou, inhabited by the Batammariba people, is a traditional settlement of fortresslike clay huts dating to the 17th century. 
Whereas in the capital, Lomé, there are the multistory Grand Marché bazaar and the Fetish Market, offering traditional talismans and remedies relating to the vodun (voodoo) religion.
Togo has a population of 7.606 million, according to the World Bank.
Nonye Dom/GEE 


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