History of Togo:
What is now the country of Togo was inhabited by the Ewe tribe people starting in the 12th century. The first Europeans to arrive here were the Portuguese in the 15th century. The area became part of the country important role of the slave trade, with the Togo coast forming part of the Slave Coast.
In 1884, Togo became a German colony. It is one of the best colonies in Germany as it is the only autonomous German colony. In 1914, France and Britain invaded the country and France took control of the country. In 1957, Togo joined the Gold Coast to become the independent nation of Ghana. French Togoland became a separate republic a few years later and became Togoland in 1960. Togo’s first ruler was General Gnassingbé Eyadema. He ruled as dictator for nearly 40 years.
Information about Togo:
|Population||9,091,942 (Source: 2023 worldometer)|
|Major Cities||Lome (capital), Sokodé, Kara, Kpalimé, Atakpamé, Bassar, Tsévié, Aného|
|Borders||Ghana to the west, Burkina Faso to the north, and Benin to the east|
|Gross Domestic Product (GDP)||$8,126,439,481 (2022 worldometer)|
|Currency||Communaute Financiere Africaine franc (XOF); note – responsible authority is the Central Bank of the|
Flag of Togo:
Togo Economy Key Industries:
Togo Major Industries: phosphate mining, agricultural processing, cement, handicrafts, textiles, beverages
Togo Agricultural Products: coffee, cocoa, cotton, yams, cassava (tapioca), corn, beans, rice, millet, sorghum; livestock; fish
Togo Natural Resources: phosphates, limestone, marble, arable land
Togo Major Exports: reexports, cotton, phosphates, coffee, cocoa
Togo Major Imports: machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, petroleum products
The Geography of Togo:
Total Size of Togo: 56,785 km² (source: wikipedia)
Geographical Low Point of Togo: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
Geographical High Point of Togo: Mont Agou 986 m
Climate of Togo: Tropical; hot, humid in south; semiarid in north
General Terrain of Togo: gently rolling savanna in north; central hills; southern plateau; low coastal plain with extensive lagoons and marshes
World Region or Continent of Togo: Africa
Geographical Coordinates: 8 00 N, 1 10 E
The People of Togo & Culture
Togo Government Type: republic under transition to multiparty democratic rule
Togo Nationality: Togolese (singular and plural)
Togo National Holiday: Independence Day, 27 April (1960)
Togo Independence: 27 April 1960 (from French-administered UN trusteeship)
Togo National Symbol:
Togo National Anthem or Song: Salut a toi, pays de nos aieux (Hail to Thee, Land of Our Forefathers)
Togo Languages Spoken: French (official and the language of commerce), Ewe and Mina, Kabye (sometimes spelled Kabiye) and Dagomba (the two major African languages in the north)
Togo Religions: indigenous beliefs 51%, Christian 29%, Muslim 20%
Interesting Facts about Togo:
Togo is a narrow country located on the west coast of Africa. It borders Ghana, Benin and Burkina Faso and has a 51 km (32 mi) coastline on the Gulf of Guinea.
Between the 15th and 17th centuries, Togo was colonized by the Ewe clans from Nigeria and the Ane people from Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.
The name Togo comes from the native language of the Ewe people. It comes from the Ewe words “to” (river) and “godo” (on the other side) meaning “on the other side of the river”.
Initially, this applied to the town of Togodo (now Togoville) on the northern shore of Lake Togo. However, the name was eventually adopted nationwide.
Togo’s first president, Sylvanus Olympio, was assassinated in a military coup in 1963.
Many believe that Togo’s next president, Gnassingbé Eyadema, will kill Olympio. After Olympio’s death, Eyadema took power and served as president of Togo for 38 years until his death in 2005.
At the time of his death, Gnassingbé Eyadema was the longest-serving leader in Africa.
The Togolese flag has three green horizontal stripes, two yellow stripes and a red square with a white star. The (five) strips reflect the country’s five administrative regions, land (green) and labor (yellow). The red square symbolizes love, loyalty and charity, while the white star symbolizes purity.
Togo’s capital Lomé is considered one of West Africa’s most beautiful cities and has been known as the “Paris of West Africa” and “The Pearl of South Africa” for its wide boulevards and cosmopolitan atmosphere.
The town’s name comes from the Ewe word “alotime” meaning “among the alo trees” – trees that once grew around the town’s original location.
Togo has very poor results in terms of gender equality. In the latest report, the country ranked among the world’s 15 worst countries for the relative gap between women and men in the areas of health, education, economics and politics.
Togo has only one UNESCO World Heritage Site: Koutammakou, the land of Batammariba. The site includes houses with terracotta towers – called Takienta – which are now considered symbols of Togo.
Togo has become famous as a major center for the ivory trade. Illegal elephant poaching cartels receive ivory from across the region and transport it to destinations in Asia. However, recent arrests by anti-trafficking teams have improved the situation.
Togo is one of the world’s leading producers of phosphates used in fertilizers. The industry was nationalized in 1974, helping to increase state revenue. However, following the economic downturn of the phosphate industry in the 1990s, refined petroleum is now the country’s main export.
One of Togo’s most famous cultural events is the Evala festival, an important initiation ritual in the coming of age of young men. Every year, hundreds of young men from all over Togo gather in the town of Kara and compete against each other. The festival also has the custom of eating dog meat.
The voodoo religion is widely practiced in Togo. Throughout the region, black magic does not have the negative effects it has in the West. In Togo, Voodoo is considered more than just a belief system as it also extends to culture, philosophy, language, art, dance, music and medicine.
The historical center of voodoo in Togo is the small town of Togoville, on the shore of Lake Togo. This scenic spot is a popular swimming spot for Lomé locals.
Football (soccer) is the most popular sport in Togo with the national team called the Éperviers. In 2006, they qualified for the first World Cup but couldn’t get far, losing all three games.