Several opposition parties are slated to stage a demonstration in Cotonou on Tuesday, February 26. Opposition leaders claim the government has made changes to the election charter which may prevent them from contesting the legislative elections in April. On Sunday, February 24, local officials stated opposition leaders agreed to reschedule the march initially planned for Monday, February 25, after the Cotonou prefecture threatened to ban the demonstration, indicating organizers failed to give appropriate notice. Demonstrators will march from the Stade de l'Amitié Général Mathieu Kérékou to Place de l'Étoile Rouge on Tuesday morning (local time). A heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions are possible in the coming days, notably on Tuesday. Further such rallies, along with associated opposition protests, are likely in the coming weeks.
The legislative elections are scheduled for April 28, 2019. Opposition parties have reportedly received notices from election officials in recent weeks indicating they failed to conform to new election standards and are at risk of being excluded from the upcoming vote.
Individuals in Benin are advised to monitor the situation, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
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