A Naples attorney leaves today for the West African nation of Togo… where he’ll serve as an independent election observer. Steven Grogoza first traveled to the former French colony when he was in the Peace Corps almost thirty years ago. He’ll return to witness Togo’s April 24th presidential election. Grogoza says, historically, the Togolese government has focused very little on the welfare of its people. This election could change that… assuming all parties accept the results.
“One of the big issues in West African politics is civil war. There is a possibility that civil war could break out in Togo. For example, after these elections, if the losing party doesn’t recognize it, they can go to war.”
During the U.S.’s most recent presidential election, a high-ranking member of the Togolese government actually came to southwest Florida. Minister of the Interior and Security, Francois Boko, applied some of what he observed in the 2004 election to his country’s own process.
Boko and Grogoza became acquainted during Grogoza’s stint in the Peace Corps.
Tuesday, 19 April 2005 01:00