The Ghana Police service has said that the meeting held by the Homeland Study Group Foundation to declare Western Togoland an independent state was disguised as a funeral or social gathering.
Leadership of the group held a meeting on Saturday, November 16, 2019 to declare the then Western Togoland, comprising Volta, Oti Regions and parts of northern Ghana as an independent state.
Reports say the gathering was held some 100 meters away from the Regional Police Training School and that it was impossible for the police to have no idea of the incident even when it was being streamed on social media.
Public Relations Officer of the Volta Regional Police Command, Corporal Prince Dogbatse, speaking on Eyewitness News explained that they did not zero in on the group because of the disguised nature of the meeting.
“…What happened was that people gathered as though they were going to perform funeral rites or any program of no security interest and it was only later that we heard reports that people published some pieces of videos on social media telling the world that a certain section of the Region has declared independence.”
He further indicated that the failure of the Service to identify and foil the declaration does not mean that they have failed in their duties.
“It is not to suggest that we are not on top of our job in the region. Hitherto, you would have seen the said group display paraphernalia, that is not what happened on the day and so we are on the ground and monitoring the situation. We have made some arrests and we will still arrest some more people who were engaged in this criminal act. I can tell you on authority that the region is very safe and peaceful”.
The Volta Regional Security Council on November 19, arrested 10 members of the separatist movement, Homeland Study Group Foundation.
Five, out of the ten were remanded on charges of treason felony after being arraigned at the Ho District court on Wednesday, November 20, 2019.
The five remanded are Peter Godfriend Edem, Mkpe Tornyi Kudjo, Kofi Agbeko, Agbenyega Akudzia and Ibrahim Tofa.
The five, believed to be members of the Homeland Study Group Foundation, are to reappear in court on December 4, 2019.
Peter Godfriend Edem was said to be the Master of Ceremonies [MC] at the event where the Western Togoland independence was declared.
According to documents from the court sighted by Citi News, Mkpe Tornyi Kudjo admitted to police that he was a Western Togolander and Kofi Agbeko serves as the treasurer of the group.
The Homeland Study Group Foundation, (HSGF), which has been campaigning for the secession of some parts of Ghana into an independent ’Western Togoland State’ declared their independence on Saturday.
Leader of the Separatist movement, Mr. Charles Komi Kudzordzi alias Papavi Hogbedetor while addressing a cheerful group of members of the separatist movement in the native Ewe language, recounted their struggles to restore the independence of the pre-independence Western Togoland territory, a German protectorate which was joined to the then Gold Coast to form the new independent country, Ghana on March 6, 1957 under circumstances he believes were ”illegal”.
Citing the recent omission of roads in the Volta Region from the Critical Roads list in the 2020 budget, Papa Hogbedetor said ” We’ve all witnessed what happened recently when we (Volta Region) were forgotten by the government in its budget. Can a parent forget about their children? We’re not their children, so they have forgotten about us.”
The Octogenarian leader of the separatist movement then declared the ’Western Togo Land’ independent saying ”from midnight of November 16, 2019, entering into Sunday, November 17, 2019, we’re now Western Togoland state.”