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Few surprises expected at parliamentary poll

There will be few surprises Sunday when Togolese go to the polls to elect their representatives in the country’s 81-seat parliament: all but 11 of the 107 candidates are members of the ruling Rassemblement du Peuple togolais (RPT) and allied parties.

Eighty (80) of the parliamentary hopefuls are from the RPT. Two parties considered close to the RPT, the Coordination des Forces Nouvelles (CFN) and the Parti Ecologiste Africain, have put up 11 and five candidates respectively.

Also in the race are one candidate from the Mouvement des Republicains Centristes (MRC) and 10 independents.

Togo’s opposition parties are boycotting the poll and, at a mass meeting on Saturday last in Lome, they called on their supporters to stay at home. The opposition has vowed not to take part in elections until a dispute with the government over the results of a mid-1998 presidential poll is settled.

President Gnassingbe Eyadema was declared the winner of that election, but the opposition rejected the result.

In the outgoing parliament, the RPT had 35 seats, the Comite d’Action pour le Renouveau (CAR) 36, the Union Togolaise pour la Democratie (UTD) 7, the Union pour Justice et Democratie (UJD) 2 and the CFN 1.

This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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