Born in the town of
General Gnassingbé Eyadéma, 1937-2005 was the 5th President of Togo from 1967 until he death in 2005. At the time of his death he was the longest-serving head of state in Africa . He fathered more than a hundred children with numerous women. His son Faure Gnassingbe then took power as his successor as he was one he considered to be more level headed and had been his financial advisor on his business interests.
Like his father Gnassingbe Eyadéma, Faure is a man of very few words. But he does have the fierce loyalty of the West African country’s well-organized and well-equipped military. He is a relative newcomer to politics, entering the political fray in June 2002, when he won a seat in parliamentary elections as a candidate of the ruling Togo People’s Rally in Blitta constituency in central
Later, he was appointed by his father as minister for telecommunications, mines and equipment - a post he held until his Eyadema’s death in February. The Late Eyadema considered political leadership a matter for destiny to decide. The late president once told journalists he would never impose a successor on his people. However, while his son was minister, Eyadema lowered the eligibility age for presidential candidates from 40 to 35 years when the ruling party Rassemblement du Peuple Togolais dominated parliament unilaterally amended the
The African Union described the takeover as a military coup d’etat. International pressure from the United Nations and Togo's opposition to the takeover culminated in riots. In response, Gnassingbé agreed to hold elections in April 2005. On February 25, Gnassingbé resigned as president, soon after accepting nomination to run for the office in April. On
Dynastic succession is reported to be a characteristic of more conservative Francophone African countries, where power is heavily concentrated around the presidency - which in turn is dependent on the backing of the former colonial power,