Togo's women say no sex for 7 days
Aug 26, 2012 / 4:00 pm
The female wing of a civil rights group is urging women in Togo to stage a week-long sex strike to demand the resignation of the country's president.
Women are being asked to start withholding sex from their husbands or partners as of Monday, said Isabelle Ameganvi, leader of the women's wing of the group Let's Save Togo. She said the strike will put pressure on Togo's men to take action against President Faure Gnassingbe.
Ameganvi, a lawyer, told The Associated Press that her group is following the example of Liberia's women, who used a sex strike in 2003 to campaign for peace. "We have many means to oblige men to understand what women want in Togo," Ameganvi said.
The sex strike was announced at a rally Saturday of several thousand in the capital city, Lome. The demonstration was organized by a coalition that is protesting recent electoral reforms which they say will make it easier for Gnassingbe to win reelection in the polls set for October.
Gnassingbe came to power in 2005, following the death of his father, Gnassingbe Eyadema, who ruled the West African country for 38 years. Gnassingbe has not commented on the sex strike, nor has his wife. Earlier this month, two anti-Gnassingbe protests were dispersed by police using tear gas and more than 100 people were arrested.
At Saturday's rally, which ended peacefully, Jean-Pierre Fabre, leader of the National Alliance for Change opposition party, called for Gnassingbe's resignation. Other opposition leaders called for civil disobedience.
But it is the sex strike that has people talking in this small country of 7 million people.
"It's a good thing for us women to observe this sex strike as long as our children are in jail now. I believe that by observing this, we will get them released," Abla Tamekloe said. "For me, it's like fasting, and unless you fast, you will not get what you want from God."
When asked if her husband would agree, Tamekloe said: "It is easy for me to observe it. I am used to it, but I am not sure my husband will accept, but I have to explain to him."
Though the call for a sex strike seemed to please many women, some men, including heads of opposition parties and human rights groups in the anti-Gnassingbe coalition, did not believe it would be a success.
"One week sex strike is too much," said Fabre of the National Alliance for Change, who suggested a shorter period, amid laughter from the crowd at the demonstration. "Let's go for only two days".
Read more World News
- Early results in Iran presidential election
- Newtown, Conn: six months later
- Boston woman pays $560K to park
- 2 found dead from Colo. wildfire
- Chemical plant explosion kills 1, 70 hurt
- Nazi SS commander found in Minnesota
- Syria's Assad used chemical weapons
- Colorado wildfire destroys 360 homes
- 93,000 confirmed killed in Syrian conflict
- 18-inch reptile found relaxing in puddle
- Jellyfish sting ends distance swim
- Fight for lung transplant successful
(Click for RSS instructions.)