Ousmane Sonko, Senegalese political opponent accused of repeated rapes with threats, by a beauty salon employee, did not refer this Monday, February 22, to the convening of the “ad hoc” commission to decide on the waiver of parliamentary immunity. The deputy had mentioned this immunity for not going to the summons of the gendarmerie on Monday, February 8th.
as reported from Dakar, Théa Olliver
Ousmane Sonko did not appear before the ad hoc committee, which nevertheless met on Monday 22 February. The National Assembly should now decide in plenary whether its parliamentary immunity is lifted or not. The plenary session can take place in the coming days.
However, two members of this commission – from the opposition – had withdrawn on Sunday. The latter questions the sovereignty of the committee and criticizes the urgency of the procedure, which does not respect the presumption of innocence of the Member of Parliament.
The Vice-President of the Assembly and the majority representative – Abdou Mbow – for his part believe that the continuation of the procedure is in no way hindered. In 2017, a committee had already decided to waive the immunity of Khalifa Sal despite the resignation of one of its members.
In the midst of this political struggle, a collective defending women’s rights condemned a debate promoting the culture of rape, a year after voting in favor of criminalization. According to her spokesperson, Maimouna Astou Yade, when the accused is presumed innocent, “the complainant also has the right to seek justice without being offended”.
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