Rights group slams graft, fraud and torture in Republic of Congo
CAD group has citied several instances where security officers had arrested suspects and beaten them with hammers.
Republic of Congo’s President Denis Sassou Nguesso in Addis Ababa on February 17, 2023. (Photo by Amanuel Sileshi / AFP)
A rights group in Congo-Brazzaville on Wednesday accused the central African nation’s government of hundreds of abuses last year, running from torture to electoral fraud.
In a report, the Development Actions Centre (CAD) group said it had documented 572 rights violations in 2022.
Cases of torture “remain routine,” it said, citing several instances where security officers had arrested suspects and beaten them with hammers, sometimes to death.
Parliamentary elections held in July were also “the most lamentable in the country’s elective history” and marked by “massive fraud,” the CAD said.
President Denis Sassou Nguesso’s party won the elections comfortably.
This video is no longer available.
Some candidates from his Labour Party won 100-percent of the votes in their districts, according to the NGO.
Nguesso has been president of the Republic of Congo – also known as Congo-Brazzaville – for nearly 40 years.
CAD also drew attention to an affair this year in which an opposition figure from neighbouring Gabon was discovered with his luggage stuffed with local currency to the equivalent of about $1.9 million.
The rights group said the scandal pointed to the “complicity of the highest authorities in the country.”
The Republic of Congo ranks 164th out of 180 in the 2022 Corruption Perceptions Index by the NGO Transparency International.