The call for a sovereign state made up solely of Ewes is something that began years ago and was spearheaded mostly by persons in some parts of the Volta Region.
Though there have been recent calls for separation by the Homeland Study Group Foundation led by Charles Kudzordzi, also known as Papavi Hogbedetor, what many may not know is the fact that not all Ewes are included in this demand.
In an exclusive interview with GhanaWeb’s Wonder Hagan, Spokesperson to the King of the Anlo State, Togbi Sri III explained the intricacies of the issues as they happened.
“Togoland was a mandated territory. The French and British Togoland were one under the Germans. When Africa was partitioned in Berlin in 1884, Togoland was given to the Germans but during the first World War; 1914 to 1918, Germany was defeated and the colony was taken from them.
Because it was a colony taken out of war, it was divided into two; French and British Togoland.” he explained.
According to him, not every ewe speaking group was under the then German colony, hence not every group was required to vote for or against the union. It is for this reason he says, the Anlos, for example, cannot be added to the list of persons demanding for a separation because though they had huge numbers, they were NOT, under any circumstance, part of the demands. They, were already a part of the Gold Coast.
“…The boundary does not include Anlo. Anlo became part of the Gold Coast in 1874. But the first World War came in 1914, so we were already part of the Gold Coast. Just Kpetoe area, to Kpedze, they were the former German colony now called British Togoland. So Papavi Hogbedetor including Anlo as part of Western Togoland is not correct.
“We were never part of German colony, the Germans never ruled us. The only thing is that they brought education and church; the E.P is a German church and the church also opened schools. That was how far they went. The boundary is in Lome – Aflao so we were never part,” he added.
Togbi Kumassah further noted that “They were mixing Western Togoland with “Eweto”. “Eweto” is an organization comprising all the Ewes, from Ghana, Togo, Benin and Badagre; they are all Ewe-speaking people. Our elders, Sylvanus Olympio; the first president of Togo who was assassinated, they were the brain behind the “Eweto” but we are not part of the Western Togoland.
“When they did the plebiscite on May 9, 1956, it was the Ho, Kpando and Kete Krachie people from the Volta Region. Anlos were not part. If we were part, there should be another plebiscite here,” he stated.
According to Togbi Kumassah, the other groups aside Kpando and Ho which were part of the voting leading to the plebiscite, may have chosen to join the then Gold Coast because most of their kingsmen and ‘brethren’ were already in the Gold Coast, hence they felt more comfortable joining. He believes the Ewes who wanted a separation may have wanted to do so because of their affiliation to the Ewe-speaking Togolese.
“Sometimes they justify it by saying that if you add our number to Kpando and Ho, they would have won because the decision was based on majority, the reason being that we the Anlos, Ewes, majority of us are in the Togo territory, and the North; Dagomba and others, majority of them were in the Gold Coast,
“When they voted, either to join their brothers in the Gold Coast or to remain, naturally, they will like to join their brothers. We have our brothers in Togo, so if you asked, they would like to join their brothers in Togo, so that is why you find the Ho people, majority of them saying, they didn’t want to go to the Gold Coast. Kpando people also. But Kete Krachie people, because most of them were at the Western side of the Volta region and majority of them were Akans, they decided to go by the Gold Coast,” he further explained.
Secessionist group, Homeland Study Group Foundation (HSGF) has, since Friday dawn, been in the headlines after ceasing Juapong, a town in North Tongu District of the Volta Region.
The group also captured three personnel of the Ghana Police Service after attacking the Aveyime and Mepe Police Stations.
HSGF claims that Western Togoland was an independent state before it was forced to join Ghana after the 1956 plebiscite.
Per their demands, Volta and Oti regions, parts of Northern Region, North East region and Upper East Region will become part of a new Western Togoland state.
However, the ripples of the security situation in the Volta Region has been travelling beyond Ghana, grabbing the attention of some international media.