We need tight security in Volta; Tongu Youth for Peace and Development
The Tongu Youth for Peace and Development in the Volta Region has called on the government to, as a matter of importance, do everything possible to ensure that state security agencies protect the people, particularly during the pending general elections.
This was against a call made by the Vice President of the Volta Region House of Chiefs and Paramount Chief of Battor, Togbe Patamia Dzekle VI, on the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to withdraw all security personnel from the region to ensure that the people would not be intimidated and harassed during the elections.
The Tongu Youth for Peace and Development noted that the statement from the Vice President of the Regional House of Chiefs ought to be regarded as a misplaced priority, because the government, religious bodies and civil society groups among others were calling for peace, as well as the need for the country’s security agencies to exhibit high professionalism to ensure peace before, during and after the elections, and for the Chief to have called on government to withdraw all security personnel from the region was very unfortunate.
This, which was contained in a press statement signed by the Convener of the Tongu Youth for Peace and Development, Mr. Sylvester Yevuga, and made available to the media in Ho, observed that it was not, however, clear if Togbe Patamia Dzekle was speaking his mind as the Paramount Chief of Battor, or it was a collective decision by the Volta Region House of Chiefs.
He continued that if the Vice President claimed it was the decision of the House, then it was false, because their findings showed that after election of the leaders of the House, there had not been a committee meeting at the time he made the statement.
Mr. Yevuga said the Tongu Youth for Peace and Development regarded the call from the Vice President of the House of Chiefs as not in the general interest of peace and be treated as personal, since the said statement was insincere, unnecessary and should be treated with the contempt that it deserved, and that any call from a chief or purported to be the view of the House of Chiefs, which would not promote peace, should not be taken seriously.
He continued that the statement rather called for a further tightening of security in the region, as it was suggestive of an agenda inconsistent with the numerous calls for peace and safety.
He further said the police came publicly and announced that there existed many flashpoints in the region, for which they (police) were prepared to promote law and order during and after the elections, therefore, such calls from a chief or House of Chiefs should be disregarded by peace-loving people of the region, and the country in general.
Mr. Yevuga observed that the recent invasion of the region, particularly the Tongu area, by the Western Togoland Restoration Movement was still fresh in the minds of the youth, which Togbe Patamia Dzekle, on the 25th September, 2020, in his capacity as the Paramount Chief of Battor, blamed the government and security agencies for not preventing the invasion.
The Convener noted that the Western Togoland Restoration Movement promised further attacks on the people in the region, and expressed surprise that the House of Chiefs did not regard this threat, but rather the government removing the security personnel from the region during the elections was their interest, without considering the safety of the people in the case of any attack during their absence.
Mr. Yevuga pointed out that the Tongu Youth for Peace and Development wondered how the House of Chiefs would take such a decision, saying double standard was being exhibited when the same House called for peace during and after the elections, and at the same time asking the government to withdraw all state security personnel from the region.
He said the Tongu Youth for Peace and Development was of the view that the call by the chiefs was misplaced, and not the representation of the views of all citizens in the region.
“The statement from our chiefs calling on the government to withdraw state security agencies from the Volta Region was a clear indication to the Tongu Youth for Peace and Development that the VRHC no longer considered the interest of Volta citizens and their subjects as supreme,” he charged.
Part of the statement by the Volta Region House of Chiefs read: “The call from citizens of the region to the VRHC is that the House should demand withdrawal of these security personnel from the region forthwith, so as to reduce the fear of intimidation being exhibited by the security personnel.
“Furthermore, we are demanding on behalf of the chiefs and people of the Volta Region that there should be absolute peace now, during, and after the elections to enable us all lead normal and peaceful lives.”