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Togo President, Faure Essozimna Gnassingbé Eyadéma in 2005. Credit/BBC

Togo President, Faure Essozimna Gnassingbé Eyadéma in 2005. Credit/BBC

New Law: President Eyadema entitled to rule Togo for 30 years

Going by the new law in Togo, President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbé Eyadéma is entitled to remain in power for 30 years.

Faure Eyadema has been President since 2005. Before assuming the presidency, he was appointed by his father, President Gnassingbé Eyadéma, as Minister of Equipment, Mines, Posts, and Telecommunications, serving from 2003 to 2005

Togo’s parliament has voted to reinstate the two-term limit for presidents, but the change does not apply to the current leader.

President Faure Gnassingbé will be eligible to run in future elections in 2020 and 2025, meaning he could potentially remain in power until 2030.

Opposition politicians wanted the new cap to apply to President Gnassingbé but the ruling party proposal won out.

The announcement was made shortly before midnight after 90 out 91 MPs cast a secret ballot in favour of the constitutional revisions.

The matter has stirred controversy in recent years.

Yet the changes are not so surprising given that two-thirds of the representatives are allied to the governing party, following last year’s legislative election which the opposition boycotted.

During a debate in parliament, several MPs threatened to boycott the vote over a proposal to also extend the presidential mandate to seven years.

In the end, lawmakers voted to stick with five years.

The Gnassingbé family is the longest-running political dynasty in Africa – Faure Gnassingbé succeeded his father in 2005 after his more than 50 years of autocratic rule.

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Editorial Chief, Nigerian Bureau

Kings UBA is a Nigerian journalist and writer. I have reported for major local and international news organisations. I write satire. In 2017, I started contributing stories primarily to Discover Africa News Network. I can be reached on editorkingsuba@gmail.com. I currently manage Discover Africa News social media handles