Benin – provisional receipt from the FCEB: Here is what really happened

All opposition political parties were excluded from the legislative elections of 28 April 2019 due to the lack of a conformity certificate. After the installation of the parliament, the concerned parties had to fight to obtain a legal personality. The Fceb, between the hammer and the anvil, finally decided despite some pockets of resistance.

In an exclusive interview with Benin Web TV (the video in a moment), former Minister of National Defence, Théophile Yarou, deeply explained the process that led to the provisional receipt. It all started with the parliamentary elections. Efforts by both sides to get Boni Yayi’s party to participate in the consultations have been in vain. From March 17th, 2019, the party no longer existed. It was necessary to comply with the texts even if they were not digestible. “The law may be bad, but it remains the law,” said Minister Yarou. It was necessary to comply with them in order to have the right to speak and hope for a responsible correction of controversial texts.

It is in this perspective that the party leaders have explored ways out. Some, visibly better informed, wanted to create another party outright. Because,” says Minister Yarou, “some of his comrades have said that the government will never accept to issue them the receipt if the party does not change its name. But, from experience, others have preferred to take the risk of reintroducing the file while taking care to comply with the instructions of the Minister of the Interior. This has paid off.

Pour pas un autre parti politique?

A en croire Théophile Yarou, en créant un autre parti politique, ils ont la chance de perdre beaucoup de militants. Les gens prendront assez de temps pour se familiariser avec le nouveau parti. Pire, les camarades en exil pour “des raisons politiques” ne pourront plus faire partie de la nouvelle formation politique. Or, avec l’ancien parti, non seulement on maintient les militants mais aussi on sauve les leaders qui sont hors du territoire national. Ce sont, selon l’ancien ministre de la défense nationale, les raisons, entre autres, qui ont fondé leur démarche.

Koutché and Djènontin are not excluded

The former members of the national executive board who are struggling with the law, in this case former ministers Komi Koutché and Valentin Djènontin, are not excluded from the party. There have just been adjustments to comply with the interdepartmental order prohibiting the issuance of acts of authority to persons subject to justice. Even if Minister Yarou disapproves of the order, he thinks it should be complied with until things can be taken over. For him, in two or three months, the party will be able to organize an extraordinary congress to reorganize its structures. So, everyone will be able to return to the position they held, Théophile Yarou reassures us.

The executive board will work to calm the heat. It is not the positions of responsibility that will tear the party apart. There is no crisis within the party. It’s just misunderstandings,” says the now National Executive Secretary.

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