Focus on Africa: Ghana Volta region 'separatists' to face treason charges
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'Western Togoland' restorationists arrested for planning to proclaim a breakaway state in Ghana’s Volta region are charged with treason.
Ghana’s Chronicle newspaper which reported the arrest of the seven suspects, all members of the Homeland Study Group Foundation, were rounded up in Ho, capital of the south-eastern Volta region last Sunday.
The newspaper reports that the alleged “secessionists” who have a constitution, a national emblem and composed an anthem had been planning to declare the independence of the region on May 9.
The online publication myjoyonline quotes a police statement claiming that that activities of the arrested persons included the recruitment of a militia-style force which was to form the core of their supposed country’s armed forces and police.
“That charge is frivolous and we are not training a militia or any kind of group they are mentioning”, says George Nyakpo, secretary and public relations officer for the group.
Nyako who spoke to RFI from a hidden location claims “the police are just trying to fabricate stories to establish their infantile decisions”.
“If they say we are training people, why didn’t they arrest the people where the training is going on”, the HSGF’s spokesman wondered.
He also claims that police arrested their leader in front of the Foundation’s office as he come out from a meeting. He wonders how an old man aged 85 and using a walking stick could go training militia-style people.
Charles Kormi Kudzodzi, who is the conscience of the Homeland Study Group Foundation, wants the 1956 plebiscite which facilitated the union between the British-mandated Togoland and the Gold Coast prior to Ghana’s independence on March 6, 1957 to be revisited.
Members of the Homeland Study Group Foundation argue that there has been no unionized constitution since then.
“The Foundation’s Secretary claims that over the years, they sent a series of letters to the government which they never responded to, adding that in the most recent they drew Accra’s attention to the need to sit down and discuss “things they had come across which they didn’t like”.
George Nyako says they made it clear in the last missive that if the government failed to respond to their request, by May 9, which marked the 62nd anniversary of the plebiscite that led to the creation of the union, Accra should rule them out as part of Ghana.
The Homeland Study Group Foundation which insists it can achieve Western Togoland’s restoration to its 1922 status, through a mass mobilization of her human and financial resources, lays claim to about 4 million core members drawn from across the so-description Tans-Volga Togoland.
The territory presented by the restorationists as their homeland stretches from Kulungugu in Ghana’s Upper East Region to Keta in the Southern Coast by the Atlantic Ocean covering a surface area of 34,600 square kilometers.