Oral statement at the UN Human Rights Council 51st Session
(12 September – 7 October 2022)
Palais des Nations
Heavy prison sentences for political opponents Reckya Madougou and Joël Aivo in Benin
CAP/ Liberté de conscience and Human Rights Without Frontiers have been deeply concerned about the ongoing backsliding of democracy and human rights in Benin since President Patrice Talon came to power in 2016.
Political opponents have been victims of arbitrary arrest, fabricated charges and sham trial leading to heavy prison terms.
In December 2021, Reckya Madougou, the leader of the largest opposition party and a presidential candidate, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for allegedly financing terrorism. She had previously been a minister for 5 years.
Her candidacy had earlier been illegally rejected by the electoral commission.
End of last year, Joël Aivo, a law professor who challenged President Talon in the last election, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for allegedly plotting against the state and laundering money.
In May 2021, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights adopted a Resolution in which it declared to be deeply concerned by the restrictions on civic space and the crackdown on demonstrations by the army resulting in loss of lives, abuses and violations.
More information :
9/09/2022 HRWF: Benin under the spotlight at the UN Human Rights Council
29/09/2022 Eutoday : Rogatien Biaou: “I have strong faith that Benin will return to a democratic path”