122. Editorial Note

Pursuant to General Assembly Resolution 860(IX) of December 14, 1954, and Trusteeship Council Resolution 1084(XV) of March 14, 1955, a special United Nations mission, composed of representatives from India, Australia, Syria, and the United States, was authorized to consider what arrangements the inhabitants of the Gold Coast desired with regard to their future. India, represented by V.K. Krishna Menon, at the behest of Great Britain and reflecting the friendship of Nehru and Nkrumah, took the initiative in seeking passage of a General Assembly resolution desired both by the British and by the Gold Coast nationalists. The mission’s reports, submitted in October and November 1955 (U.N. docs. T/1206, T/1206/Add.1, and T/1210), recommended a plebiscite to determine the wishes of the people.

In Resolution 944(X) of December 15, 1955, Great Britain was authorized to conduct the plebiscite subject to United Nations observation and supervision. Voters were given the choice of opting for union with an independent Gold Coast or temporarily perpetuating the Trusteeship, apart from the Gold Coast, pending a later determination of their future. The voting took place on May 9, 1956, and resulted in 93,095, or 58 percent, favoring integration with the Gold Coast and 67,492 opposing. In the north, integration carried by the heavy margin of 49,119 to 12,707, but lost in the south by 54 percent, 54,785 to 43,976. With India once again taking the lead, the Trusteeship Council in Resolution 1496(XVIII) of July 31, 1956, voted 13–0–1 (Guatemala) to recommend to the General Assembly that it take appropriate steps, in consultation with Great Britain, to terminate the Trusteeship upon the independence of the Gold Coast. Information on these matters is in Yearbook of the United Nations, 1956, 1957, and 1958.

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The Alternate United States Representative, Frank C. Nash, informed the General Assembly on December 13 that the United States would support the free choice of the population of British Togoland and vote for the termination of the trusteeship agreement and the integration of British Togoland with the soon to be independent Ghana. He urged minority opposition elements to accept democratic principles and to seek change by peaceful means. (USUN Press Release No. 2555) The General Assembly went on record in Resolution 1044(XI) of December 13 (64–0–9) as approving the union of Togoland under British administration with an independent Ghana. When this occurred on March 6, 1957, the trusteeship agreement expired.