On September 28, 2015, the Ivoirian opposition organised a march against the state broadcaster, Radiodiffusion Télévision Ivoirienne (RTI) to denounce what they called the government’s stranglehold on the state broadcaster.
The opposition march, which was led by former Prime Minister (2005-2007) Charles Konan Banny, ex-Speaker of Parliament Mamadou Koulibaly and other presidential candidates, called on the RTI to give equal access to all the candidates and political parties contesting the October 25, 2015 presidential election.
The MFWA’s correspondent in Cote d’Ivoire reported that the march, which was attended by hundreds of demonstrators, was peaceful with police on duty having no problems with the demonstrators.
The MFWA calls on the government of President Alassane Ouattara to allow the RTI to work independently and to give equal access to all political actors in Cote d’Ivoire. As a public-funded institution, the RTI is obliged to demonstrate neutrality and impartiality towards all political parties and candidates.
The MFWA also wishes to commend the demonstrators, their leaders and the police for the peaceful nature of the march. It is a healthy sign of democratic maturity and tolerance in the West African country. This is a departure from the worrying trend in some countries in West Africa where demonstrations became chaotic as a result of police brutality. Countries such as Guinea, Benin and recently Ghana and Burkina Faso have recorded incidents of police brutality during demonstrations.