Crush them now!

Once upon a time, Germany colonized what is now known as the Republic of Togo in West Africa. A part of that area was referred to as TransVolta Togoland. After Germany lost World War I, it automatically lost its colonies, including present day Togo and ceded same to France and Britain. The colony was divided between France and the United Kingdom by the League of Nations, with France assuming control of Togo and Britain taking over the so-called TransVolta Togoland. The United Kingdom holding trusteeship for the TransVolta Togoland or the British Togoland, and also the colonial master for the then Gold Coast held a plebiscite in 1956 to annex the Trusteeship and the Gold Coast then being prepared for independence. TransVolta Togoland became the Volta Region in 1957 when Ghana achieved its political independence. Even though the Volta Region, like several others in Ghana is not ethnically homogeneous, a substantial number of indigenes in the south and the middle belt are the Ewe speaking people with blood relations and common cultures (language, religion, diet etc) with the people of southern Togoland. It must also be stressed that not all the Ewe speaking citizens in the TransVolta Togoland were citizens of the German Togoland. The areas of North Tongu, Keta and Ketu, among a few other communities were all originally part of the Gold Coast colony.  

As if by design or default, the most debilitating, negative impact of the legacy of colonialism is slicing a political knife through a homogeneous group, that has the tendency of pitting same ethnic group against the other. The eastern part of the Ivory Coast, for instance, has the Baule and other Akan speaking ethnic groups that share similar cultures as the Akan in Ghana in the immediate east.  A nation’s development, could be hampered, stymied or even destroyed when resources are diverted to stem internal divisions and dissentions. This phenomenon has reared its ugly head and is now threatening Ghana. A group of people from the Volta Region has formed what is called the Homeland Study Group Foundation (HSGF) to agitate for political independence from Ghana. On November 16, 2019, HSGF declared independence for an area they themed Western Togoland. In the early hours of September 25, 2020, a well-planned and re-sourced wing of the HSGF stormed some parts of the Volta Region, blocking major highways and seizing police precincts, taking 10 AK 47 assault rifles in the process.

The anarchy has been condemned by several Ghanaians and organizations, including Civil Societies and politicians. On the flip side, others, including some residents in the Volta Region, conspiracy theorists, and politicians, believe government is complicit in the debacle in order to divert attention from more pressurized and pressing political issues.

The group has openly announced themselves and their goals, its leaders has been arrested, released and re-arrested over the years, known to have trained para-military people, held overt and covert meetings, and erected billboard posts to affirm their resolve. We are therefore worried to hell and concerned about the seemingly lackadaisical attitude of the security arms of government that have allowed the group to fester and flourished since its inception. We think at minimum, tabs would have been placed on the leadership of the so-called Western Togolanders to monitor their activities, unless National Security is underfunded and/or under-resourced. Boko Harem of Nigeria, the Tuareg of Mali and such others across the length and breath of Africa and elsewhere, started as small units with few people but grew and expanded exponentially to be a force to reckon with.

It has been suggested by some Ghanaians that it is necessary for government to sit down at the negotiating table with the miscreants for a peaceful resolution. Of course, peaceful negotiations could be the best recourse to peaceful coexistence among the two parties but at what cost? The party very likely to benefit from such negotiations for secession could be Volta Region but history and facts on the ground would not support the region’s acquiescence to such demands by a tiny minority of agitators. Already, the loudest condemnation of the incidence has been heard from the Region’s leaders. Togbe Afede, the paramount chief of Ho, which happened to be one of the six districts that were historically involved in the annexation has issued a strong warning against the treasonous act. Togbe Sri, a paramount chief of the southern Anlos, originally part of the Gold Coast Colony and now sharing Volta Region with the secessionists has also expressed his anger and disgust at the criminal act of the so called Western Togolanders. The logic of the situation does not enjoin the government and people of Ghana to become apologists for a crime against them. Government must be careful to not legitimize this illegal entity by engaging them in dialogue. It should rather clip its wings by cutting off their source of funding, and to vigorously persecute and prosecute the perpetrators before they grow wings and fly at the throat of Ghanaians.

Ghana is gradually making economic progress and is poised for economic liftoff and therefore has no time for distractions; internal divisions and dissentions, ethnicity and regionalism, parochial interests and greed, or insensitive geo-political rhetoric. Treason is clearly defined in the Constitution of Ghana!  Having been able to weather the turbulent storm of insecurity in the West African region so far, we have so much gain to protect our sovereignty with a hawk’s eye. Crush the dissidents now before other regions start to toy with same warped philosophy. Ghana must not disintegrate!

Posted by on Oct 1 2020. Filed under Editorial. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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