On Tuesday, Ivory Coast suspended a popular television presenter for 30 days for asking a convicted rapist on his prime-time show to demonstrate how he raped women using a female mannequin.
Announcing the suspension of Yves de Mbella, Ivory Coast’s independent communications council in a statement said the segment used obscene language, condoned rape and attacked the dignity of women.
At one point on the show on Monday, de Mbella helped the guest adjust the mannequin and asked him how he chose his victims, whether he preferred them “slim or fat” and whether the victims “enjoyed it”.
The Nouvelle Chaine Ivoirienne private television station apologised for airing it and cancelled the final episode of this particular show which had been scheduled for Friday.
“I’m sincerely sorry to have shocked everyone while trying to raise awareness,” de Mbella wrote on Facebook. “I made an error.”
“I’m also sorry for everything that was said or done during that sequence of the programme yesterday that hurt,” he wrote. “I beg for forgiveness from all victims of rape.”
The segment was swiftly condemned on social media platforms in Ivory Coast and across West and Central Africa.