Benin opposition politician goes to African court

Benin opposition politician Sebastien Ajavon on Wednesday took the country’s government to court, demanding nearly $990 million in damages after a string of arrests and prosecutions.

One of the failed presidential candidate’s four lawyers, Julien Bensimhon, told the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights in Arusha, Tanzania, that his client needed its protection.

Benin’s courts “were not in a position to do it”, he said, adding that Ajavon’s right to liberty, property, a fair trial and the presumption of innocence had been infringed, he added.

The damages were for psychological damage and harm to his commercial interests, the court was told, according to a live stream of proceedings broadcast online.

Ajavon’s lawyers said their client had been subjected to “harassment” and a “calculated plot”…

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