Togo’s President Faure Gnassingbe was inaugurated on Sunday for the fourth time as Togo’s President at a ceremony that was minimized to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Some 200 guests – all wearing face masks and practicing social distancing – attended the ceremony.
President Faure Gnassingbe of Togo sworn in for the fourth time as President.
With borders closed, it was only attended by diplomats already in the country.
The televised ceremony was shortened to just over 80 minutes, without the usual pomp and ceremony.
Gnassingbe, 53, won by a landslide in February, extending his 15-year reign by another five years.
The inauguration went ahead despite measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic in the small West African country, which has recorded 123 cases and nine deaths, according to the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.
Gnassingbe was sworn in despite the objections of his political rival, former Prime Minister Agbeyome Kodjo, who won 18.37 percent of the votes.
Military police detained Kodjo in April after he declared himself president-elect.
Faure’s father, Eyadema had ruled Togo for many years.
Togo, a West African nation on the Gulf of Guinea, is known for its palm-lined beaches and hilltop villages. Koutammakou, inhabited by the Batammariba people, is a traditional settlement of fortress like clay huts dating to the 17th century.
In the capital, Lomé, are the multistory Grand Marché bazaar and the Fetish Market, offering traditional talismans and remedies relating to the vodun (voodoo) religion.