Head of state and government Thomas Boni Yayi
Death penalty abolitionist in practice
Population 8.9 million
Life expectancy 61 years
Under-5 mortality (m/f) 123/118 per 1,000
Adult literacy 40.5 per cent
Several demonstrations were banned. At least one person died in detention reportedly as a result of illtreatment. Prison conditions remained poor due to overcrowding. At least five people were sentenced to death.
Freedom of assembly
In May, the authorities banned public gatherings in two departments in the north of the country for alleged security reasons. In July, the authorities banned several demonstrations organized in Cotonou by trade unions protesting against corruption and the rising cost of essential goods.
Torture and other ill-treatment – death in custody
- In February, Adam Yessoufa, who was arrested by the gendarmerie of Karimama in the north of the country, died in custody reportedly after being beaten by security forces. The case was brought before the local prosecutor but the results of any inquiry were not made public and no one was charged.
Prisons remained overcrowded. The prison of Abomey in the centre of the country reportedly had six times more people in detention than its capacity, resulting in harsh conditions for prisoners.
In November and December, at least five people were sentenced to death in their absence by the Parakou Court of Appeal. The last execution known to have been carried out was in 1987.