The Homeland Study Group Foundation, Saturday, declared political autonomy (independence) for the people of the Volta and Oti Regions.
The octogenarian leader of the group, Mr Charles K. Kudzordzi, with the support of a Ho-based Togolese Pastor, Godsfriend Edem Peter, head of the Believers Chapel International, proclaimed the two regions as Western Togoland.
The declaration of independence for Western Togoland was made at a public gathering at the former premises of the Unity Rural Bank, close to the Ho Police Training School, amid cheers from other members of the group.
However, the regional minster, Dr Archibald Yao Letsa, described the declaration of independence for the two regions by the group as vain and criminal.
He told the ‘Ghanaian Times in Ho yesterday that, “we are on top of the issue and we will pick them up and deal swiftly and ruthlessly with them”.
Dr Letsa said that the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) had already held an emergency meeting over the matter and would meet again over it today to take the appropriate action over the “so-called declaration of independence by the group”.
The minister, who chairs the REGSEC, explained that the presence of patrol teams of the security agencies on the streets of Ho, the regional capital, was meant to assure the safety and not to intimidate anyone.
Dr Letsa said that the patrols would continue for a while and entreated residents to bear with the patrol teams.
According to him, the Homeland Study Group Foundation posed no threat to the state, and urged all and sundry to go about their daily activities.
The group had been demanding the secession of the Volta Region and parts of the Northern, North East and Upper East regions to become the Western Togoland state as soon as possible.
It argues that by the dictates of the 1956 plebiscite, the terms were no longer binding on the parties and that even certain portions of present Ghana were not considered during the referendum.
Mr Kudzordzi and other members of the separatist group were arrested in May this year, and arraigned but were released on bail.
FROM ALBERTO MARIO NORETTI, HO