Ferdinand Mensah Ayité
Ferdinand Ayité is an investigative journalist and human rights defender based in Lomé, Togo. He is the publication director of the investigative newspaper L'Alternative. L'Alternative is known for reporting on cases of corruption and embezzlement in Togo, calling for increased accountability in the country. On 4 November 2020, he was sentenced to pay a fine, after finding him guilty of defamation under the Press Code. The charge, filed by businessman Fabrice Affatsawo Adjakly, relates to an article published on 9 June 2020 in L'Alternative, uncovering a case of misappropriation of funds of between 400 and 500 billion CFA francs (610 to 760 million euros), related to the import of petroleum products. The article written by Ferdinand Ayité accuses Fabrice Affatsawo Adjakly, a businessman and member of the Committee for Monitoring Fluctuations in the Price of Petroleum Products (CSFPP), and his father Francis Sossah Adjakly of leading the embezzlement scandal, which also reportedly implicates members of the Togolese Government and the Swiss petrol trader VITOL, which has been winning calls for tenders for years.