Togo opposition paper suspended for ‘defaming minister’
Togo's media watchdog has suspended a pro-opposition newspaper for four months for allegedly defaming a government minister.
It is not the first time the biweekly L'Alternative has fallen foul of the authorities in the tiny West African state.
The country's communications authority HAAC, which regulates the media, suspended the paper on Friday after a complaint from Housing Minister Koffi Tsolenyanu, who is also a notary.
A report in L'Alternative had questioned Tsolenyanu's administration of the estate of wealthy trader Georges Kudawoo, who died in 1940.
The HAAC said the paper's director had provided no proof of its allegations during a hearing on Friday and had declined to rectify the story.
It said the paper had "defamed and harmed the honour and dignity" of the minister and had failed to respect a professional code of conduct.
L'Alternative was also suspended in March last year after a complaint by France's former ambassador about an article.
Togo is often accused by rights groups of cracking down on opposition politicians and media.
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