BRIEF HISTORY OF WESTERN TOGOLAND
Togoland, covering an area of 87, 200 km2, was a German Colony in West Africa.
This peaceful country in West Africa was invaded by the Forces of Britain and France when the First World War broke out in Europe on the 27th August, 1914.
The forces of these two countries, otherwise known as the Allied forces, succeeded to dislodge the Germans from Togoland which was shared into two with the Eastern half going to France and the Western half, having its boundary with Ghana, going to the British for their administration as mandated Territories under the auspices of the League of Nations.
The mandate agreement, under which all territories seized from the Germans were administered, was changed to the Trusteeship in 1946 when the United Nations replaced the League of Nations. Thus, the Trusteeship Council became totally responsible and a watch dog and monitored the performance of the British and the French Governments’ administration of the West and East Togoland.
The French Government used “policy of assimilation” to administer Eastern Togoland, (East Togo as part of France and the people as nationals of France). The British however, administered the Western Togoland side by side with her colony, the Gold Coast under the Governorship system.
Unlike German South West Africa (Namibia) and Eritrea which were placed under South Africa and Ethiopia respectively then for their administration, Western Togoland was not placed under the Gold Coast as administrators because the Gold Coast was still then a colony to the British.
Western Togoland Restoration Congress fill bitter about the way United Nations and the British government belittled the people and destroyed the future of Western Togoland.
When Nkrumah intensified his campaign for independence in the late 1940s and the early 1950s the British Government lost concentration and became jittery. They appointed him to be in charge of government business in 1951 in the Gold Coast and made him the Prime Minister in 1952. This was the appropriate time that Great Britain should have appointed or established an independent interim administration for British Togoland also; knowing very well that Kwame Nkrumah becoming the head of Gold Coast automatically became the head of British Togoland because the two countries were being administered together.
In order to prevent any hostile attitude by Kwame Nkrumah towards the British government and also to avoid him drifting to the Eastern Block during the Cold War, Great Britain was prepared to sell British Togoland to independent Gold Coast.
Meanwhile the debate on British Togoland was raging on in the United Nation with the British government biased demonstration of indecision concerning the type of relationship that should exist between the two nations (The British Togoland and the independent Gold Coast).
The United Kingdom went further to suggest that a Plebiscite be held in the Trust territory to determine the wishes of the people.
In accepting this proposal the United Nations noted the statement made by the Government of United Kingdom in resolution 860 (IX) of 14th December 1954 that: “ the Gold Coast will attain independence in the nearest future and that, in consequence, it will be impossible thereafter for Togoland under British administration to be administered as at present’’ and noting the opinion of the Trusteeship Council and the special report of the visiting mission, at its 556 plenary session of 15th December 1955 adapted a plebiscite to be held to ascertain the decision of the majority of the people of the Trust Territory in respect of:
a) The Union of their territory with an independent Gold Coast or
b) Separation of Togoland under British administration from Gold Coast and its continuance under trusteeship pending the ultimate determination of its political future.
The plebiscite was held on the 9th May. 1956. The South voted massively for separation. However, the ‘union’ won with a margin of 58%-42%. The conduct of the plebiscite with the British being the United Nations plebiscite organizer and administrator left a lot to be desired.
British officials went round the territory and strongly urged the people to vote for the ‘union’. Kwame Nkrumah was allowed to cross border to a foreign Country-British Togoland to influence the people of the Northern part of the territory with gifts like bicycles, machetes, sewing machines and secondhand cloth etc.
Togoland under British administration still had a good chance of becoming independent because the majority of her people voted for ‘union’ and not for annexation or unification as suggested in resolution 860(IX) of 14th December 1954. A union where each of the two Countries, Ghana and British Togoland would have their individual identity as a nation with separate administering authority.
At its 619th plenary meeting on 13th December 1956, the United Nations Organization in resolution 1044(XI) paragraph I accepted the results and approved the union of the territory of Togoland under British administration with the independent Gold Coast now Ghana. The United Nations Organization accordingly invited the administering authority-Britain, to take such steps as are necessary to this end. In other words, they must see to administer the “union”.
In paragraph 3 of this very resolution, the United Nations Organization again charged the government of United Kingdom to notify the United Nations Organization Secretary General as soon as the union of the territory of Togoland under British administration with the independent Gold Coast had been effected.
The United Kingdom indeed did notify the United Nations Secretary General in Document T/1301 in a letter dated 6th March,1957, but by her unique political design, did not comply with the paragraph I (see para.12). The fact is that the United Kingdom government did not take any steps as an administering authority to see to the administration or manifestation of this “UNION” of which the United Nations expresses its approval at its “619th plenary meeting on 13th December 1956.
The United Kingdom aided by the United Nations thus succeeded to create a big political vacuum giving enormous advantage to Independent Gold Coast (Ghana) to annexed Western Togoland.
Today, the former Trust Territory, Togoland under the United Kingdom administration, supposed to be in Union with Independent State of Ghana is no more on the map of West Africa or Africa. It has been gerrymandered by Ghana and completely obliterated from the map of the world. This vacuum again makes it possible for Ghana to enslave the people of Western British Togoland Finally. This very situation empowers the Independence state of Ghana to become the first Black African Nation to colonize a FELLOW LEGITIMATE African Country, Western Togoland as we can see it today.