Italian NGO Founder Under Investigation for Child Sex Abuse


The founder and president of a major Italian NGO operating in Africa has been arrested after allegedly sexually abusing a young boy in Togo.

The alleged abuse is said to have taken place over the span of seven years from 2007 to 2014 and occurred under threats from the NGO head towards the victim, Il Giornale reports.

The paper claims that the victim, who was living in a communal home in Togoville, was told by the NGO head that if he did not accept the sexual abuse that he would be kicked out of the home and put back on the streets without food, money, or access to education.

While official details about the identity of the man arrested by police have remained scarce, some Italian media claimed that the NGO is Italy-based Mama Africa whose social media presence on Facebook disappeared around the same time as the arrest occurred.

The page has since reappeared and confirmed that its founder Enzo Liguoro was under investigation saying that Liguoro would clarify what is alleged in court and that they would not comment on the details of the ongoing case.

The accusations follow similar allegations last year that were directed at workers of the charity Oxfam with aid workers being accused of sexual assaults on children in South Sudan.

The charity’s former global head of safeguarding Helen Evans also warned of potential assaults on children volunteering at Oxfam shops in the UK.

Evans described some of the reports she had been given from 2012 to 2015 saying, “There was one of a woman being coerced to have sex in a humanitarian response by another aid worker, another case where a woman had been coerced to have sex in exchange for aid, and another one where it had come to our attention where a member of staff had been struck off for sexual abuse and hadn’t disclosed that.”

NGOs working with migrants in Europe have also come under fire for alleged sex abuse. The U.S.-based Mercy Corps, which is supported and receives funding from left-wing billionaire George Soros, was involved in a sex abuse scandal in Greece where workers are said to have abused migrants in reception facilities.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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