Dear VF members –
Hello! I am Peter from Togo and I have been in Hong Kong for three years. When I left my country in 2008, because of my political activism, I hoped to find asylum and a new future in Hong Kong. When our political party was violently broken up by the government, some of my colleagues went to Belgium, others to France and Holland. Their stories of persecution and their evidence were the same as mine and other Togolese who came to HK. However, six months to a year after arriving in Europe, my colleagues were accepted by the those governments (through the Immigration Department). Instead, here in Hong Kong not one single Togolese has ever been recognized by the UNHCR – Why?
It is commonly known that Togo was brutalized by President Gnassingbe Eyadema from 1967 until his death in 2005. At his death he was the longest ruling dictator in Africa and that was not thanks to his democratic ideals, but because he was ruthless. There was no surprise when his son continued the ‘family business’ after his death. Faure Gnassingbe’s power is still unchallenged today. In my view, these 44 years of brutality, torture and assassination caused more deaths than the 20 year war in Somalia. Everyone knows Somalia is lawless because there is no government, but Togo is even more dangerous because there is one – an evil government.
This link tells about a student demonstration that was violently dispersed yesterday 14 June 2011:
Citizens are killed every night. For example, the famous political activist Gaston Vidada was shot dead in May in his Lome home. The government said they would make an inquiry into his death. He was shot with a rifle and in Togo only the government has guns. They will cover up this assassination like they have done hundreds before and surely more in the future. Even France, who covertly rule Togo since 1918, cannot control the President’s family, which is why opposition parties win the elections, but are never recognized with the true results. There is no political freedom in Togo. There are no civil rights or human rights. There is no justice and there is no future for ordinary citizens, which is why many seek sanctuary abroad. The world knows what is going on in Togo, but we refugees cannot be recognized in Hong Kong. Why?
CIA World Factbook – Togo: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/to.html