Democratic Values Denied in Equatorial Guinea

Democratic Values Denied in Equatorial Guinea

March 25, 2011
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionEmailEmail

The government of Equatorial Guinea should not deny citizens the opportunity to hold peaceful demonstrations to advocate for the protection of civil liberties and improved social conditions, EG Justice said today.

(Washington, DC, March 25, 2011)—The government of Equatorial Guinea should not deny citizens the opportunity to hold peaceful demonstrations to advocate for the protection of civil liberties and improved social conditions, EG Justice said today. This week the government rejected applications submitted by opposition political parties to hold a public demonstration and a public meeting. Since March 20 security forces have mobilized in the capital and other cities, ostensibly as a show of force to thwart would-be-protestors.

The crackdown on public demonstrations stands in contrast to recent public statements by the country’s president Teodoro Obiang, who became the chair of the African Union in January. In a speech to Parliament on March 17, Mr. Obiang stressed the need to “eliminate the lapses that currently violate the rights and freedoms of individuals, groups, and organs and institutions of our society.” As chair of the African Union, Mr. Obiang has urged Africa to assume a leading role in “the promotion of democracy” across the continent.

“Disappointingly, a gap persists between the ideals that Mr. Obiang professes as the chair of the African Union and his own governance practices at home in Equatorial Guinea,” said Tutu Alicante, executive director of EG Justice. “The constitution of Equatorial Guinea explicitly guarantees the freedoms of expression, association, and assembly, as does the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, which Equatorial Guinea ratified in 1986. To be a credible leader at the African Union and in Equatorial Guinea, Mr. Obiang needs to apply the democratic values of the African Union and enforce Equatoguinean laws designed to protect the democratic rights of citizens.”

EG JUSTICE - is a 501(c)(3) organization.
P.O. Box 57297 Washington, DC 20037 1 (202) 643 4345 Copyright © 2010 EG Justice, all rights reserved.