Friday, July 30, 2010

Benin Politics : BONI YAYI MAY HAVE TO BE PROSECUTED

Parliamentarians ask for his prosecution. Something unusual may be about to happen in Benin where two members of National Assembly, which is the legislative body of the country, have written a letter to the Speaker asking him to convene the Parliament for a session over the possible prosecution against Boni Yayi. Boni Yayi's Government is alleged to be involved in a financial scandal. 

Since the beginning of his presidency in April 2006 an organization named ICC service, which was suppose to be an NGO, has been promising high interests rate to people in return of collecting their savings. ICC Service is said to have collected billion of CFA francs from Beninese. Many among the civil society and in opposition have always tried in vain to call upon the government to take action. 

However, early this month, the government could not remain insensitive to the growing pressure coming from both the National Assembly and the people who could not be in possession of their savings. The Interior Minister, Armand Zinzindohou√© known to be a close ally of Boni Yayi was thrown out of the government. He was accused of giving protection to the ICC Service executives. Later he was arrested and released but is still held in house confinement. Boni Yayi wrote a letter to National Assembly’s Speaker urging its members to allow the prosecution of the former Interior Minister before the High Court of Justice. This Court is the only body which, according to Benin constitution, is able to prosecute high officials accused of committing wrongdoings during their time in office. Attorney General was also arrested. 

Yet, there is a widespread sentiment that the President Boni Yayi and his entourage have been deeply involved in this scandal and have been doing all they could to survive politically by making some other high officials scapegoats. During a session held by the National Assembly this month, opposition fiercely criticized the government for failing to protect people’s savings and properties and for indulging in suspicious relationships with criminal groups. 

Now, two National Assembly members, Sacca FIKARA and a former ally of Boni Yayi still member of the ruling FCBE, Janvier YAHOUEDEOU write a letter to Speaker inviting him to convene a session on the issue. Both Parliamentarians think that there are enough charges against Boni Yayi for him to be prosecuted by the High Court of Justice. If this request is favorably considered by the National Assembly, it will be the first time in Benin history since the start the democratic process in 1990 that a President comes under charges before the High Court of Justice.

No comments: