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10.05.2005 Togo

Togo should not be a tragedy - Kpo

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Accra, May 10, GNA - African workers on Tuesday said the international community should not allow the Togolese political situation to develop into a tragedy.

Mr Napoleon Kpo, General Secretary of Ghana's Industrial and Commercial Workers Union (ICU), said in that connection the meeting of the International Metal Workers Union in Vienna from May 16 to May 27 will pass a resolution among other things declaring the stand of African workers on that country.

Speaking to the Ghana News Agency in Accra about discussions on Togo at the United Steel Quadrennial Convention in Las Vegas from April 13 to April 15, which he attended, Mr Kpo said Togo's international image had sunk low and workers there could not associate and express themselves freely.

He said trade unions have desks, which monitored political developments in each country and how they affected workers. He said the international workers union had affiliation with the Togolese workers union whose "freedom is in jeopardy". Mr Kpo said, "the greatest legacy Mr Faure Gnassingbe, the new Togolese President could leave his country is for him to carry on extensive constitutional reforms.

"Mr Gnassingbe should introduce constitutional reforms, put in place an independent electoral commission and to ensure freedom of expression and association as well as allowing free trade unionism." Mr Kpo said, "it is only through peace and by ensuring a progressive workers union that Togo's economy could grow to ensure workers' prosperity.

He said military brutalities and attack on members of the opposition should cease.

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