“Dialogue must remain the preferred option of resolving disagreements between political actors... In the past, we managed to overcome many difficulties thanks to our sense of responsibility,” President Gnassingbé said in his New Year address to the nation.
“I have no doubt that, even today, we are capable of exploring all avenues of dialogue and exchange of ideas, of overcoming the grievances of individuals and circumstances to lift ourselves to the height our country deserves,” he added.
The address comes at a time when Togo is going through a political crisis caused by the mobilization of a broad coalition of opposition parties determined to reform the country’s electoral system.
Referring to these reforms, Gnassingbé advocated the need to achieve this “in accordance with the principles of the rule of law and democracy.”
Speaking of his own initiative on this issue, he recalled: “It is in this perspective that I took last September the initiative to propose to the national representation a revision of the constitution, which now limits to two the number of presidential and legislative mandates and which introduces, for the election of a President of the Republic, a two-round ballot.”
About the referendum, he announced that he will allow Togolese to decide on the possible reforms.
“In accordance with our fundamental law, it is now up to the entire Togolese people, sole holder of national sovereignty, to decide.”