If you have been thinking that seceding from Ghana is the way to secure economic freedom and better conditions of life, then you have got it all wrong. This is the caution to the people of the Volta region by founder of the United Renaissance Party, Chuck Kofi Wayo.
Some three ring leaders of a group calling itself Homeland Study Group Foundation (HSGF) based in Ho and seeking to declare the Volta Region, part of the Northern and Upper East regions as the Western Togoland state are currently facing trial for treason.
The attempt to declare Volta region and the other parts of Ghana mentioned above as Western Togoland was based on the claim that the region has been abandoned by successive governments and Voltarians are discriminated against by other regions of Ghana.
But what is the truism to this whole Brouhaha? Please read the brief history below for insight. It will be worth your while.
British Togoland, officially the Mandate Territory of Togoland and later officially the Trust Territory of Togoland, was a territory in West Africa, under the administration of the United Kingdom. It was effectively formed in 1916 by the splitting of the German protectorate of Togoland into two territories, French Togoland and British Togoland, during the First World War. Initially it was a League of Nations Class B mandate. In 1922, British Togoland was formally placed under British rule while French Togoland, now Togo, was placed under French rule.
Following the Second World War, the political status of British Togoland changed – it became a United Nations Trust Territory, although still administered by the United Kingdom. During the decolonization of Africa, a plebiscite was organised in British Togoland in May 1956 to decide the future of the territory. A majority of voters taking part voted to merge the territory with the neighboring Gold Coast, a British Crown colony.
On 13 December 1956, the United Nations General Assembly passed General Assembly resolution 1044 on “The future of Togoland under British administration”. By that resolution the UN acknowledged the outcome of the plebiscite held in the Territory which was a majority in favour of unity with Gold Coast. The resolution recommended that the United Kingdom effect the union of Togoland (British) with Gold Coast upon the independence of Gold Coast.
In a letter dated 6 March 1957 the United Kingdom Government informed the Secretary-General of the United Nations that with effect from midnight 6 March 1957, under the terms of the Ghana Independence Act 1956, the territories previously comprised in the Gold Coast became the independent State of Ghana and that under the same Act, the union of the former Trust Territory of Togoland under British administration with the independent State of Ghana took place from the same time and date. British Togoland’s capital was Ho, which presently serves as the capital of Volta Region. The region includes much of the former mandate’s territory.
According to Chuck Kofi Wayo, what the people of the Volta region should be concerned with is to be wise in the kind of leaders and political parties they vote for. He believes that the secession movement is simply being fueled by some unseen political figures to achieve their parochial political interests.
“Your condition is not different from Akwatia, Obuasi, they are sitting on gold, but they don’t have water to drink. Don’t let anybody fool you!”
“Aveyime rice farm, Kumasi shoe factory, the jute factory, Komendsa sugar factory, who spoilt them? So don’t mind anybody telling you Togoland. If the intelligence of the leader is not good whether Togoland, Momoland or Wonderland you will still suffer the same way. You see Sudan, they separated like that and now thousands of them are dying everyday.
The leaders who are telling you that are doing so just to become big men. That’s all. Have any of them come here to give you hundred Ghana Cedis to solve your problems? We are all Ghanaians. If anything at all, we should be taking Togoland back.”
Kofi Wayo made this admonishment in response to a question by the assemblyman for Tagadzi electoral area seeking the opinion of the U.R.P leader on the secession development. Chuck Kofi Wayo was in the Volta region to tour and monitor the construction of schools and other amenities in the various deprived areas being funded independently by him.
Source: Andreas Kamasah