Messi Criticised Over Gabon Trip | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Messi Criticised Over Gabon Trip

Posted: Aug 4, 2015 at 12:44 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Barcelona star Lionel Messi has been criticised by the Human Rights Foundation for his trip to Gabon on July 17th after showing “enthusiastic support for the dictatorship”.

President Ali Bongo has been accused of acting as a dictator in the Central African country by the HRF, which claim the Bongo family “has exerted complete control over Gabonese politics, economics, and society since 1967” and that local media has uncovered a diabolical scandal in which “each year children in Gabon are murdered and their organs are harvested for human consumption”.

The most serious of the accusations against Ali Bongo is the alleged facilitation of the mysterious disappearance and ritual murder of children in the country, where it is claimed by the Oslo Freedom Forum that “the rich and powerful in Gabon engage in cannibalism and ritual murders in the belief that it will further increase their influence”.

HRF president Thor Halvorssen said:”In providing PR services to Gabon’s Bongo family, Lionel Messi has seriously undermined the credibility of his own charitable foundation.

Whereas Messi claims to support children’s rights, and even serves as a UNICEF ambassador to promote youth education, he has endorsed a kleptocratic regime that refuses to investigate the ritual murder of children in Gabon.”

Messi was the guest of honour as he layed the first stone at the construction of the Port-Gentil stadium, the main venue for the African Cup of Nations tournament which will be held in Gabon in 2017.

France Football claimed that Messi was paid €3.5million for the trip, though the Argentinian and the Gabon embassy have categorically denied that this is the case and say that Messi has not accepted any payment whatsoever.

President Bongo told reporters last month: “When I was in Barcelona a few years ago, I met Messi who had told me that he would come to visit me in Libreville. It’s a promise he made me. He is a man of honour who just kept his word.”