The Volta Regional Minister, Dr Archibald Letsa says the country’s security forces were aware of a series of planned attacks by Western Togoland Restoration Front (WTRF), the separatist group seeking secession from Ghana.

According to him, this separatist group, along with 2 others, have been under the radar of the Volta Regional Security Council since 2017.

He revealed that the nation’s security forces had pre-empted the Friday morning attack by securing vital installations in the region from the group, and it was suspected that the roadblocks at the Mepe-Sege road and the Accra-Ho road at Juapong were designed as a distraction to draw the security forces away from those locations.

“We’ve been monitoring them for some time now for over two years, 2017. We were aware that there were going to be some activities last night and we had to protect some vital installation to make sure that the economy of the region is not adversely affected. So we actually were able to prevent some more serious attacks that were planned by this group”.

Dr Letsa further revealed that the WTRF is one of three other secessionist groups in the Volta Region that have sprung from the Western Togoland Study Group (WTSG) headed by Papavi.

However, the WTRF, which is led by Tobgbe Yesu I is more militant than the Western Togoland Study Group.

“They started with the Western Togoland Study Group but since then we have had some separate groups developing. And the Western Togoland Study Group was led by Papavi. But this Restoration group is being led by Togbe Yesu I. And there is another group; so we have 3 splinter groups that we are now dealing with.

“But they are all off springs of the same group but there are some differences amongst them. This group [Western Togoland Restoration Group] appears to be more militant than the previous one and we’ve been trying to deal with them as such,” he said.

Although for security reasons the minister could not go into specific details about the operations of these groups, he revealed that prior to Friday’s incident some members of this group had been arrested and were under police custody, while others were standing trial in court.

“If you can recall, there have been several arrests and trials. As I speak to you right now there are a lot of them in custody and they are standing trial at the Circuit Court in Ho and a few are also on trial in Accra,” he said.

Currently, the secessionists have been quelled and rounded up after a shoot out with the military. They have been transported to the capital, Accra for questioning and investigation by the Bureau of National Intelligence (BNI).