By Citizens Of Western Togoland Living In USA
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, on behalf of the Citizens of Western Togoland-U.S.A and on my personal behalf, I welcome you, and say thank you for your prompt response to our call.
Let me add my voice to the millions of people in thanking you for your ever-enduring efforts of digging and searching for the truth through sacrifice and unfading selflessness. Permit me to say from the bottom of my heart without flattering you that, notwithstanding the influx of technology, without Journalists, the world would remain inadequately informed.
Today, as we speak to you, it is our belief that the deaf will know of this day, and the future generations will come to hear of it.
Western Togoland, whose rights have been regrettably violated by United Nations (UN), Britain and Ghana, is seeking his independence from Ghana in order to restore his image. The geographical demarcation of Western Togoland comprises Volta Region, part of Eastern Region, part of Northern Region, part of Upper East Region.
It’s shameful to note that Ghana’s imperialism, coupled with continuation of callous idealism of the first President of Ghana, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah and his neocolonialism, has kept the archaic deplorable era of which people are arrested, imprisoned, and charged by the court before law enforcement agencies go in search for none existing evidence.
UN 1922 RESOLUTION ON WESTERN TOGOLAND
The United Nations adopted the 1922 resolution of the League of Nations, which classified Western Togoland as Class B Mandated Territory to British Trust Territory for administrative purposes only with the aim that Western Togoland would be governed in a way that would eventually lead to self-rule. A league of Nation Mandated Territory had a higher status than a colony.
There came the time when the international bodies exerted pressure on the European countries to end colonialism and grant autonomy to their respective colonies.
When Britain was granting independence to her territories, she made a U-turn with a number of falsehood as reasons why autonomy could not be granted to the Mandatory Western Togoland, but could only have Western Togoland form a Union Government with her Colony, the Gold Coast. In the proposed Union, Gold Coast would subsequently be granted independence by Britain (to legally enable the union formed)
THE UN AND THE FUTURE OF WESTERN TOGOLAND UNDER TRUSTEESHIP SYSTEM.
United Nations became very skeptical about Britain’s new claim, which plugged the United Nations into hesitation, and thus ponder over the future of the independence of the Western Togoland, because Western Togoland’s self-rule was the reason United Nations allowed Britain to remain the care-taker of Western Togoland when western Togoland under trusteeship system from 1946 until self-rule status is reached, as embedded in Chapter 11of Article 73 Cap 2 of the United Nations Charter.
The diabolic collaboration of Dr. Kwame Nkrumah with Britain, mounted undue pressure on the United Nations to approve the collaborators’ demand of Gold Coast’s union with Western Togoland.
The United Nations, reluctantly, without due diligence, granted the Union request with the conditions that, the people (Western Togolanders) must be made to determine their own future, either to be in union with the British colony, Gold Coast, or remain a separate entity. The Union (Western Togoland and Gold Coast), if chosen, must have a governance clearly laid down in a Memorandum of Understanding. A new Constitution for the unionized State must be written and established.
Even though the United Nations reluctantly granted the Union, we were astonished as you may now be, for knowing that the United Nations was unable to realize that Britain had no justification to request a Union for sovereign Togoland without direct involvement of the People (Togolanders) or the Togoland Congress, the political mouth piece of the land.
Dr. Kwame Nkrumah was the Prime Minister and a leader of government business for Britain, where he reported to the Queen directly, and for such a person to team up with Britain to request a union with a free Togoland, was tantamount to a conflict of interest, but the United Nations failed to notice that.
Whether intentionally or unintentionally, the United Nations mistakenly asked Britain to be in charge of both the plebiscite and the establishment of the Union: a referendum that Britain termed Plebiscite.
Just as Britain ignored Togoland Congress and directly made Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, who was alien to Western Togoland, a spokesperson for Togoland, the United Nations also failed to acknowledge the existence of a competent and legitimate Togoland Congress, and thus, woefully failed to involve Togoland Congress in the determination of a political union with the Gold Coast. Was this gross oversight a coincidence? You are the best judges.
THE ISSUES OF 1956 PLEBISCITE
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, we will not bore you with the infamous, undemocratic, dehumanizing, improper, challengeable and questionable referendum/plebiscite that took place on 9th May, 1956 in Western Togoland. It must interest you to note that Sir Charles Arden-Clarke, the British Governor of the Gold Coast in Charge of the plebiscite, in his statement as the overseer of the referendum, in search of suitable words to describe the exercise, is quoted on record saying, “Ghana’s imperialism has won the day.” We are sure this statement might have plugged you in to psychological ecstasy as we intent to walk you through the plebiscite another day.
Despite the desensitized and unconstitutional stigma attached to the plebiscite, it is thought-provoking to know that the United Nations acknowledged the outcome of the plebiscite in favor of Union between Western Togoland and Gold Coast, now Ghana; that reminds us of one of the United Nations’ conditions for misguidedly granting the union request and eventually terminating the trusteeship agreement with Britain, “that the people must vote to determine their political future.
- As to whether they would wish to enter a union with an independent Gold Coast (Ghana) or separate from it.
- The working of the union if chosen should be clearly laid down in a memorandum of understanding.
- A common constitution for the two states should be drawn.
- The Gold Coast should also then be granted independence
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s over sixty-one (61) years now, and the memorandum of understanding has not been written to lay down the working of the union.
In fact, it was only the trusteeship agreement between Britain and the United Nations that made Western Togoland a protectorate of Britain so the termination of the trusteeship agreement for the purposes of the plebiscite, made Western Togoland sovereign state and removed all privileges bestowed on Britain to remain care taker. At this juncture, Britain has no right to act or speak for Togoland, let alone organize and preside over plebiscite for Togoland.
GOLD COAST AND WESTERN TOGOLAND UNIONIZATION ISSUES
While all these is ongoing, Gold Coast is drawn in its colonial status and have no right to go into any political union with independent Togoland, since according to UN and international law, political union can only be made or established among sovereign states. And Gold Coast, at the time, had not been granted independence to qualify to form a political union. Surprisingly, UN once again remained blind folded to these facts.
The 1956 plebiscite was a historic event that had seen many casualties that we will look at when we walk you through the plebiscite in the next session.
It is also significant to note that the majority of the people of Ghana were against the union with Western Togoland as they communicated it unequivocally on 12th July, 1956 through referendum to nullify the 9th May, 1956 union vote, by voting for unitary system of government. Western Togoland chose union with Ghana, but Ghana chose unitary system of government.
The United Nations, delivering on its promise, on 13th December, 1956, passed a resolution recommending that Britain effect the Union of Togoland with Gold Coast upon the independence of the Gold Coast, after which the trusteeship agreement was concealed by the UN in order to facilitate the UNION.
In a letter dated 6th march, 1957, Britain informed the Secretary-General of the United Nations that with effect from midnight 6th 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 independence state of Ghana took place from the same time and date.
THE ILLEGAL STATUS OF WESTERN TOGOLAND IN GHANA
Ladies and gentlemen, Britain referred to Ghana’s Constitution order in council Act, which did not acknowledge or recognize Western Togoland and the union, let alone guarantee fundamental human rights and inalienable rights of citizens of Western Togoland as basis of a Union. A constitution that was keenly criticized by United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC) and was described by both UGCC and Convention Peoples Party (CPP) as imposed document, but Dr. Kwame Nkrumah and his government reluctantly accepted it and replaced it shortly with republican constitution instead of a Unionized Constitution.
Can Britain talk of effecting a union of which she failed to convene a constitutional conference between Ghana and Western Togoland? It is, therefore, imperative to note that it is only a constitutional conference that can bring forth A UNION ACT to give a solid legal backing to the Union. However, is it not contradictory for Britain to boast of effecting a union in which part of British white paper, if not painfully and disrespectfully, reduced Western Togoland to a mere region.
Britain, coming from a civilized continent, knows that an ambiguous plebiscite does not establish a political union.
Notwithstanding the illiteracy rate of the Chiefs of the Gold Coast, Britain forcefully plugged them into signing the bond of 1844, thus bringing their land under British rule for 100 years. We can, therefore, say that Britain knew how important documentations and legal backings were.
How then would Britain effect a union between Gold Coast and Western Togoland without any binding document? You are the best Judges.
No single person from Western Togoland and Ghana is on record to have been the signatories of the Union on behalf of their respective lands.
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, because of the unproven union, section of Ghanaians are ignorantly claiming that our land (Western Togoland) voted in a referendum/plebiscite to assimilate into Ghana. If that is the case, where is the integration document? Where is the integration Act? Who were the signatories of the integration? Where and when was the integration signed and celebrated?
It is only when you harbor imperialism that referendum could mean many things and could even replace acceptable norms.
The above facts and many more are what the good people of the Western Togoland are referring to, and which fuel the agitation for the freedom of the land.
THE ONGOING AGITATION
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, we are aware of the sabotaging effort of the government of Ghana and section of Ghanaians to smear this established order and the purpose of Western Togoland, but we will not relent to any political entities, bigotry and suppression. Our intention to rally in peace behind this course until the self-rule purpose of the Western Togoland is realized, remains undiluted and nothing will compel us to compromise it either. Not even under the pain of death.
Democracy and its principles are our number one weapon, and we will employ it to the fullest.
We also want to send a clear message to section of Ghanaians who have been referring to us as Terrorists and dangerous group that we are not a Terrorists and dangerous group. Our fight for Western Togoland is legitimate and does not include sporadic symbolic use of organized violence.
Western Togoland is nurtured by League of Nations, then UN with pioneering purpose of self-rule.
A land that does not honor its heroes is not worth dying for, so we the people of Western Togoland decided to hold memorial service for Western Togoland loyalists who died during the infamous plebiscite. With 9th May remaining a historic day on Western Togoland’s calendar, on that day, Western Togoland will carry out mass education about the land and inform the government of Ghana of their illegal holds on to Western Togoland and the need for divorce.
So, memorial service for the falling heroes were organized, T-Shirts with the inscriptions, “9th May is our day” were worn. This triggered the arrest of three sons of the land namely Mr. Charles Kormi Kudjordjie, Executive Chairman of the Homeland Study Group Foundation HSGF, Mr. Divine Odonkor, Deputy Secretary of HSGF and MR. Martin Asiamah Agbenu, member of HSGF who are the leaders of the freedom movement, and they were slapped with treason charges.
We are law abiding Citizens and we believe in Rule of Law. So, we allowed the law to take its natural course but the Machiavellianism and antagonistic tactics Ghana initiated into the handling of the case is more agonizing than the penalty of the case when found guilty.
It is only the head that wears the crown which knows the heaviness of the crown. We wish to remind you of Dr. Raphael Grail Armaatoe.
Dr. Armaatoe championed the independence of the Western Togoland; he represented the joint Togoland congress at the United Nations and delivered a magnificent speech to the decolonization council in November, 1953. He argued clearly that Togoland is not part of any dominion and does not wish or want to be part of any dominion. He, therefore, challenged the powers that were supposed to see to our independence, but rather became hindrance on our way, to do the right thing. Two weeks after the speech, he was poisoned.
Our Chiefs, who rejected the Ghana’s 6th March, 1957 independence celebration because Western Togoland was smuggled into Ghana without establishing the Union, together with many of their subjects, met their hot death caused by Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s soldiers at Kpando and Alavanyo.
Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s Prevention Detective Acts saw the arrest of our men in the Ghana Army who were against the illegal integration of Western Togoland to Ghana. They were killed, and many fled into exile.
Mr. George Komla Nugba, a Togoland congress member from Anfoega Bume. A German scholar under the German suzerainty, Mr. Nugba was against the plebiscite since it did not give a fair representation and involvement of the indigenous. 9th May, 1956 after the plebiscite, he was chased into exile at Hohoe by a Chief who compromised with Dr. Kwame Nkrumah. It is on records that Mr. Nugba died in exile.
Reverend Michael Kwame Kwawu, another German scholar, an ordained pastor by German Missionary and a member of the Togoland congress, was also chased into exile in Kpalime after the plebiscite, so were Torgbui Kosi Adiko III of Tanyigbe, Torgbui Bonkra III, Torgbui Kwami Dogli, Rev. Ametorwoblah, Otto Awumah, Torgbui Gabusu, Torgbui Howusu, Ashia Kudzordzi, Torgbui Honu, Kofi Dumorgah, Kormi Dumorgah and hundreds of others.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Press, you may feel sorry for our woes but the facts remain; no one feels the pain as the injured.
The above account to the fact that the Western Togoland’s independence fight did not start yesterday, rather, long enough in the life of the collaborators like Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, but the sad news is that, anyone who stood for it is either killed or chased into exile. For how long will the Powers of the world remain onlookers and allow this unacceptable hostility to continue? In this twenty first century?
We are, therefore, calling on UN as a father of our land, in a cogent manner without any political lingering to heed to our wailing and respond accordingly, for no father will hear the cry of his child and refuse to act.
We are also charging UN, that it was its actions and inactions that had pushed us into this neo-colonization. It should put its house together and provide answers to end this neo-colonization and stop asking us to channel our grievances through a member state.
- ALL UN MEMBER STATES
- THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT OF JUSTICE.
- THE UNITED NATIONS.
- AFRICA UNION.