The Leading Global Portal for Diplomats!    
    Keep in touch with the community Prepare for your new career Take care of personal affairs Chat with diplomats online      
Home > New Posting > Post Reports
The Host Country

Area, Geography, and Climate Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Togo, a country of 21,853 square miles, about the size of West Virginia, stretches 370 miles from north to south and averages 56 miles in width. It is bounded on the west by Ghana, on the east by Benin, on the north by Burkina Faso, and the south by the Bight of Benin on the Atlantic Ocean.

Lagoons cross the country to the southeast, separating the mile-wide sandbar along the Bight of Benin from the geographical mainland. To the southwest a low plateau gradually rises, followed by a southwest-northeast mountain range that is from 2,300 to 3,300 feet high. Another plateau lies to the north of the mountain chain, and beyond that, high hills rise in the northeast. An open savanna then unfolds and extends to the Burkina Faso border.

Togo has no navigable rivers, but several rivers have the potential for irrigation, which the Togolese are beginning to exploit. The country’s most fertile areas are in and around the mountain range; the northern savannas are the poorest.

Savanna-type vegetation dominates. Large trees, including the baobab, common in the south, are rarer in the north. Mangrove and reed swamps dot the coastal region, and coconut plantations grow along the sea.

Some deer, antelope, buffalo, warthogs, and hippopotamuses roam the north, and hippos and crocodiles can be found in the southeast. Togo's most common animal life includes monkeys, snakes, lizards, and birds.

Chickens, sheep, goats, pigs, guineafowl, and a few other domestic animals are kept in the city as well as the rural areas.

There are protected forest game preserves at Fazoa and Keran, in the central and savanna regions.

The country is divided climatically into southern and northern zones. The southern tropical average temperatures fluctuate between 70°F and 80°F , with February and March the hottest months, and June, July, and August the coolest. Humidity is high (80%-90%) most of the year. The major dry season extends from the end of November to the end of March; August and early September are also sometimes quite dry.

Equatorial conditions in the mountains of Togo support the country’s only rain forest.

Northern temperatures fluctuate between 65°F and over 100°F, and humidity is less than in the south. The northern zone has one rainy and one dry season. In December-January, a cool, dry, dust-laden "harmattan" wind from the Sahara sweeps across the land.

Population Last Updated: 7/24/2003 2:16 PM

The population of Togo was estimated at 4,629,000 in 2000. With an annual growth rate of 2.7%, the population is estimated at 4,999,415 in 2003. Lomé is the capital city. There are other major populated cities: Sokode, Kara, Atakpame, Tsevie, Dapaong, Bassar, Kpalime, Aneho, and Mango.

In Togo, 33% of the population are Animists; 47% are Christians; and 14% are Muslims. For the monotheist religions, in the south, most of the Ewe, Guen, Ouatchi, Akposso, and Ife-Ana ethnic groups are Catholics and Protestants. In the north, most of the Kabiye, Losso, and Lamba are Catholics and Protestants, but the Cotocoli, Bassar, Konkomba, Tchamba, Anoufo, and Moba are primarily Muslims.

The Togolese territory is divided economically into five regions and administratively into 30 prefectures. The five economic regions are: the Maritime region, the Plateaux region, the Central region, the Kara region, and the Savanna region.

Although Togo has some 40 ethnic groups, 3 dominate the population. These are the Ewe, the Kabiye, and the Gourma groups. The Ewe group, including the Ouatchi and Guen subgroups, represents 40%- 45% of the entire population. They live in the Maritime region and a large part of the plateau region. The Kabiye, Cotocoli and Losso groups represent 25% of the Togolese population. The Kabiye, who represent more than 50% of the Kabiye group, are mostly located in the Kara region. The Gourma group represents 14% of the total population of Togo and is dominated by the Moba, followed by the Gourma, the Bassar, and the Konkomba groups.

Togo's prehistory and early history were marked by the migrations of various African peoples: pre-historic Sangoan hunting and gathering clans who settled in central and southern Togo; people from the Sudan-Nile region who came to the north in the 10th-13th centuries; the Ewes and other groups from Nigeria who migrated between the 14th and 16th centuries; the Mina and other people from Ghana; and the Cotocoli and other ethnic groups from Burkina Faso who came in the 17th century. The boundaries of these kingdoms extended beyond present-day Togo.

The Portuguese, the first Europeans to explore the Togolese coast, came in the late 1400s. Between 1600 and 1800, Brazilian, British, and other slave traders raided the coast and later the interior. Togo became part of what was known as the Slave Coast. German traders and missionaries reached Togo in the mid-1800s. In 1884, Germany set up a small coastal protectorate, gradually moved inland, and developed the social and economic infrastructure so successfully that Togo became its sole self-supporting colony. From 1885 to 1914 Lomé was the administrative and commercial center of German Togo (called Togoland), which included what is now Togo and the Volta region ( now part of Ghana).

In 1914, Britain and France jointly invaded and took control of Togo. After World War I, Togo came under a League of Nations mandate and was divided into British and French Togo. The U.N. took over the mandate in 1946. Social and economic repercussions of the British-French trusteeship, particularly the splitting of the Ewe and other ethnic groups and their territories, continue to be felt.

In late 1956, French Togo voted for status as an autonomous republic within the French Union; the British-ruled people of the Volta region opted to join Ghana, which became independent in 1957. On April 27, 1960, French Togo gained full independence from France.

Although Western contact has affected the life and outlook in the towns, much of the countryside remains less affected. Traditional animist culture, and the customs peculiar to it, continues strongly to influence the Westernized population. Polygamy is widely practiced in rural areas and even in Lomé and other towns. As in the rest of Africa, Togolese life centers on the extended family, which includes those far from the immediate family circle. Loyalties reach out beyond the family to the clan. Traditional mudbrick homes and communal wells give way, in urban areas, to more modern housing and facilities. However, walled courtyards as centers of family life, cooking with charcoal or wood fires, and communal piped-water taps with the customary social life they create, are still common. Complex traditional women's hairstyles and dress for both men and women provide interesting contrasts to European fashions.

Western culture and Christianity have had the greatest influence in the south, the area that traditionally has been the source of most government officials, teachers, journalists, office workers, artisans, and traders. Recently, however, more northerners have become civil servants and professionals through an active effort to rectify past disparities.

The literacy rate in Togo is 51%. There are about 50 African dialects spoken. French is the official language, as well as the language of commerce. Some people also speak English and German. The government has a policy of developing two national languages-Kabiye and Ewe as languages of instruction. Some broadcasting (both radio and TV) is done in these languages. The principal native languages are Ewe and Mina in the south, and Kabiye and Haousa in the north.

Public Institutions Last Updated: 7/31/2003 11:19 AM

Togo's first President, Sylvanus Olympio, was overthrown and killed in a coup d'etat on January 13, 1963, in which the current President, General Gnassingbe Eyadema participated. After four years of rule under civilian President Grunitsky, Togolese President Eyadema came to power as a result of a bloodless coup d'etat staged on January 13, 1967. The country's constitution and National Assembly were abolished, and the President ruled by decree. In 1969, the Rassemblement du Peuple Togolais (RPT) was founded as the sole political party, with Eyadema as its president and founder. However, beginning in late 1990, strike actions and demonstrations led by students and taxi drivers began a movement that demonstrated the Togolese wish for a more democratic form of government.

A transitional government was named in August 1991 to lead Togo through constitutional, local, legislative, and presidential elections. The transition process was and has not been smooth. Demonstrations, an opposition-sponsored general strike from November 1992 through July 1993 that severely shocked the economy, and sporadic outbreaks of violence from elements of the security forces and others created an unsettled atmosphere for much of 1991 through 1994.

Progress toward free elections and installation of a government was difficult. A new, democratic constitution was improved in a referendum in September 1992. In a seriously flawed presidential election in August 1993, President Eyadema was reinstated for a 5-year term. The major opposition parties boycotted this election. After extensive negotiations between the opposition and the President's party, legislative elections were held in February 1994. The parties opposed to Eyadema won a slim majority in a poll that was generally held to have been free and fair. That majority was soon lost, however, when some of the election results were contested by the courts in favor of the President's party.

In June 1998, President Eyadema was re-elected for another 5-year term. Because the vote count was aborted, many believe Eyadema was on the verge of being defeated by his primary opponent, Gilchrist Olympio, son of Togo's first President. As a result of the controversy over the presidential election, the opposition boycotted the legislative elections of March 1999. Nevertheless, a formal national reconciliation process began in July 1999 and led to the Lome Framework Agreement under which the next round of legislative and presidential elections was supposed to take place.

Legislative elections, originally scheduled for March 2001, were held in October 2002. Opposition parties boycotted these elections resulting in an overwhelming victory for the ruling RPT. In spite of President Eyadema’s promise to Jacques Chirac in 1999 not seek re-election when his term expired in 2003, he decided to run for the presidency in the 2003 elections. The Constitution was changed and approved by the National Assembly in February 2003 giving the president the mandate to continue seeking presidential terms. Opposition parties failed to agree on a single opposition candidate to oppose Eyadema. Elections were held on June 1, 2003, with seven major candidates. Eyadema was declared the winner with 57.22% but controversy continues to surround the election process and results. Among other irregularities, many voters were unable to obtain their registration cards and there were reports that some ballot boxes had been stuffed with RPT ballots. There was little effort to investigate the irregularities, formal complaints of which were thrown out by the Constitutional Court.

The RPT declared the elections to have been democratic, free, fair and transparent, but the United States and the European Union were not in agreement with that assertion. The new government announced that it would seek to establish a government of national unity by inviting members of opposition parties to take an active role. Parties opposing President Eyadema and the RPT, however, refused to take part in the belief that it would accord the government credibility it does not deserve.

Whether Togo is able to make progress toward genuine democracy during the next five years or not will depend on the willingness of the various parties to the political process to engage in dialogue with the government toward that end yet again.

Arts, Science, and Education Last Updated: 8/25/2003 1:32 PM

Public education in Togo is virtually free. In principle, all children must begin school at the age of six, but attendance is not compulsory. In Lomé, the rate of school attendance is high, but the situation varies from region to region. In the coastal and plateau regions, school attendance is 55%. The rate is only 20%-25% in the savannah region. In almost all villages there are primary schools, and in the administrative districts, some junior secondary schools and lycees (secondary schools).

Togo’s one university, the University of Lomé, founded in 1970, has an enrollment of about 13,000. The university has faculties of sciences, arts and humanities, economics, law, medicine, and agronomy, a school of nutrition and food science, a school of secretarial studies, an Institute of Management, of educational science, and an advanced Institute for Industrial Engineering. Many Togolese go abroad to study, usually to France. Some study in Germany and the United States.

Togo’s best-known artist is Paul Ahyi, sculptor, muralist, and painter. His works decorate important buildings from the 1960s and 1970s. There are artists throughout Togo in all disciplines; a fortunate number occasionally exhibit works at Lomé hotels, the Palais du Congres, and the French or German Cultural Centers. The ubiquitous traders in Lomé and in other cities peddle many bronze, wood, ivory and semiprecious stone artifacts. Handicraft making has been boosted by the creation of a craft center in Kpalime, a 90-minute drive from the capital. Craftsmen fashion batiks, hand-carved wood, weave cloth, and produce glazed pottery. Jewelers, sandalmakers, embroiderers, cloth and basket weavers, and workers in wood, ivory, and bone can be found in major cities.

An integral part of Togolese life, in villages and urban areas, are plays and community singing and dancing. Traditional regional festivals are celebrated throughout the year. Some of Africa's best drumming is found in Togo.

The Public Affairs Section (PAS) is located in the American Cultural Center across angle Rue Kouenou and Rue Béniglato from the Chancery building. The direct telephone number is 221-2166. Office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Friday. PAS offers educational exchange programs, cultural programs which include support to English-language teachers, lectures in French and English by visiting experts and artists, and other cultural presentations of the U.S. Government. PAS also sponsors visits of Togolese citizens to the U.S. through the International Visitors program of the U.S. government. PAS circulates the French Wireless File (produced in Washington) to writers and editors of the print media, radio and television, and publishes and distributes 2,000 copies of its quarterly news bulletin, “USA*Togo.” The Cultural Center’s Information Resource Center (IRC) has 1,250 books in French and English available to the public. The IRC also provides reference, referral, Internet research and outreach services. It serves as a source of current and balanced information.

An Embassy-owned telephone system (221-2991 to 94) serves the Chancery and American Cultural Center. Embassy hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday, with a 45-minute lunch break, and 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Friday.

Commerce and Industry Last Updated: 7/24/2003 2:19 PM

Togo’s economy depends heavily upon agriculture, phosphate mining, and regional trade. Togo is among the world’s least developed countries, with a per capita income of $270 and GDP of $1.3 billion in 2001. The majority of the population depends on subsistence agriculture. The agricultural sector accounts for approximately one-third of the GDP and employs over 70% of the population. Principal food crops include yam, cassava, millet, corn, sorghum, and groundnuts. Agricultural production rose to a record high in 1993 due to political disturbances and an 8-month general strike (1992-1993) that forced many unpaid civil servants to migrate from Lomé to rural areas and farms.

Cotton, coffee, soy beans, and cocoa are the major cash crops produced for export. Some attempts are being made to export pineapples, houseplants, vegetables, and palm oil. There has been a greater emphasis in cotton production in the last decade. Cattle, sheep, goats, and pigs are also raised.

Phosphate mining is the most important industrial activity. Phosphates have traditionally accounted for 20%-30% of total export revenues, 10%-13% of total government revenues, and 6%-10% of GDP. Togo has an estimated 130 million tons of phosphate reserves, and the government-owned Togolese Phosphates Office (OTP) has a production capacity of 2.5 million tons a year.

Industry plays a relatively small role in the Togolese economy, usually accounting for less than 10% of the GDP. Much of Togo’s industrial base dates back to the government’s industrialized programs in the late 1970s and early 1980s, which resulted in a number of poorly run parastatals. Demands for higher wages have had a particularly negative impact on domestic industry.

The government has liquidated some parastatals, privatized others, and improved the management of many of those remaining under state control. The government’s privatization campaign has brought foreign investment in several former state-owned companies, including a steel mill, a dairy factory, a cookie factory, a pasta factory, a brewery, a flour mill, a detergent factory, and an edible oil refinery. In 1989, Togo created an export processing zone to encourage foreign investment and export-led economic growth. Although growth has been limited by Togo’s political troubles, there are now over 30 such companies in operation.

Togo has few energy resources of its own and relies heavily on hydroelectric power from Ghana and Benin for its electrical needs. Togo’s energy production capacity, however, increased with the completion of the Nangbeto hydroelectric dam, which was built on the Mono River in central Togo, near the Togo/Benin border. Nangbeto’s production capacity is about 150 million kilowatts of electricity annually. Electricity supplies in Lomé and in several smaller cities are generally reliable, but wide fluctuations are common. Ghana rationed hydroelectric power in early 1998, causing several months of erratic power in Lomé and elsewhere. The purchase of American-built turbines has provided a reliable backup for electricity. All mission residences are now equipped with diesel-powered generators as well.

Regional trade is a very important component of the economy of Togo. In fact, commerce is the single most important economic activity in Togo after traditional agriculture, and Lomé has long been known as an important regional trading center. The commercial sector is dominated by five major trading companies, which control roughly half of the registered import activity. There are also many smaller registered commercial enterprises. Togo has a well-developed banking sector, with five full-service commercial banks. Lomé's position as a regional banking center, however, has been reduced because of the political and economic difficulties of the 1990s.

The modern and autonomous port of Lomé, an extensive paved road network, and an improving telecommunications system all help to make Togo’s infrastructure competitive in the region. The country has over 2,250 miles of paved roads, the most important of which are the north-south road from Lomé to the Burkina Faso border, and the coastal road linking Ghana and Benin. The Port of Lomé, which was inaugurated in 1968 and expanded in 1984, has 10 piers capable of handling a large variety of ships. The port operates daily and has extensive transit and storage facilities. It has a 173-acre free port area and an additional 1,581-acre industrial park, making it an attractive regional base. Some warehousing, assembling, and manufacturing operations receive customs exoneration on imported raw materials and finished exports. Good infrastructure has made Togo an important transshipment center, particularly for goods going to Nigeria, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger. About 25%-30% of Togo’s imports are officially reexported, but actual reexports are probably much higher since many of the goods entering Togo leave the country through informal channels.

Togo’s relative advantages as a regional trading hub have eroded in recent years due to improvements in the business climates in neighboring countries and the political uncertainty in Togo.

Capital and consumer goods in Togo are imported mainly from France, Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, Lebanon, and China. Some 60% of the imports consist of consumer goods, one-third of which is food and beverages.

In the past the Togolese Government put a high priority on developing the country's tourist trade. Lomé has five European-style hotels and many smaller tourist hotels. There is one nice, government- owned hotel in Kara, 430 kilometers north of Lomé. The tourist industry has been adversely affected by the long period of political uncertainty and periodic violence.


Automobiles Last Updated: 7/24/2003 2:04 PM

You can ship a car or buy one of the following locally: Jeep Cherokee, BMW, Hyundai, Isuzu, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Peugeot, Renault, Suzuki, Toyota, Kia, or VW. Local agents will import European and Japanese cars for Embassy officials and employees with duty-free privileges, but this can take about 6 months. Only a small percentage of companies have automobiles available in showrooms. Repair and maintenance services are available for Jeeps, European, and Japanese cars. Maintenance and repair of most American-made and automatic transmission cars are not available. Many Mission personnel arrange with the Mission-employed mechanics to service their cars during off-duty hours.

Although Togolese law requires yellow fog headlights, white headlights are most common.

Regular, super (high octane), and diesel fuels are available locally. Super, which costs 365 CFA per liter, is recommended. Diesel costs 300 CFA per liter. There is no unleaded fuel sold.

Bring extra parts (muffler, tailpipe, heavy-duty shock absorbers, fan belt, starter, oil and air filters, spare tires, etc.) for American cars to post. Road conditions and climate are hard on tires, suspension, and paint. Rustproof and/or undercoat your car (double coat is suggested) and bring extra polish.

All vehicles must be registered. Two types of registration are issued to American officials. Those with full diplomatic status are issued CD plates. Those with administrative status are issued official plates. Fees are assessed in both cases. It is recommended to obtain an international drivers permit before coming to post and use it in conjunction with the regular American license.

Third-party liability insurance must be obtained locally. Other types of car insurance can be obtained from the U.S. or at post. Automobiles imported into Togo by official Mission members are tax-free. One car is allowed per employee tax-free. A duty-free car sold to a person without free import privileges is taxed on the basis of the car's value at the time of resale. If your vehicle will arrive at post ahead of you, send a copy of the bill of sale to the General Services Office to ensure proper custom clearance.

Cars are required to have a safety/technical inspection every 6 months. If your car is stopped and your inspection certificate is out of date, you may be fined and your vehicle impounded.

Cars can be rented with or without a chauffeur from a car rental firm, but prices are high.

Local Transportation Last Updated: 8/25/2003 2:11 PM

In-town taxis provide inexpensive transportation (400 to 600 CFA) to any point within central Lomé, although vehicles are often in poor condition. Tipping is not expected, but the fare should be agreed to prior to commencing the trip. Taxis can easily be obtained during business hours however, for security reasons, avoid taxis at night and those that already have other passengers. If the driver stops to pick up other passengers and refuses to continue without them, exit the taxi. Exercise caution while driving, wear seatbelts and have car seats for infants and small children. The condition of motor vehicles on the road is quite poor, so defensive driving is very important as vehcile operators tend to follow their own traffic rules

Bicycles, motor scooters, and motorcycles are numerous on already congested streets. Limited brands/models of bicycles, motor scooters, and motorcycles can be obtained locally. Togolese law requires the wearing of helmets for adequate protection. However, many cyclists do not wear them.

Avoid night driving whenever possible. Many roads are full of large potholes and most are without streetlights. Moreover, many cars do not have proper headlights and taillights.

Most police vehicles are blue and white. Fire department vehicles are red. Official government vehicles are generally black. It is common practice to stop or reroute traffic if a VIP is going to pass. Everyone is required to obey either police or military persons directing traffic.

Most Embassy personnel travel to Togo’s interior by privately owned vehicles. Taxis and minibuses provide regular (if crowded and not very safe) transportation to all towns and are not recommended.

Regional Transportation Last Updated: 8/25/2003 2:14 PM

Togo’s air-conditioned airport officially opened in 1988. Air services to and from neighboring countries are available although delays are common. Air Togo flies four times weekly between Paris and Lomé, making stopovers in Bamako. Air Senegal offers four flights a week between Lomé and Dakar, with stopovers in Abidjan and Bamako. Air Gabon offers four flights a week with stopovers in Douala. Ethiopian Airlines fly two times weekly between Addis Abeba and Lomé with stopovers in Accra and Lagos. Air France has three flights between Lomé and Paris with connections to the U.S. No American carriers serve Lomé.

Togo does not have international rail transport, but the two-lane macadam roads to Cotonou, Benin, and Accra, Ghana, permit automobile travel. All driving within the West Africa region is on the right side of the road. Cotonou and Accra are both about 3 hours by car from Lomé; Lagos, Nigeria, is approximately 2 hours beyond Cotonou, but road travel is not recommended to Lagos for safety reasons. It is possible also to drive to Burkina Faso.

Togo’s roads vary in condition, with many potholes and bad stretches of road. Most country roads are dirt or sand routes. Four-wheel drive vehicles are popular among the American community.


Telephones and Telecommunications Last Updated: 9/4/2003 1:53 PM

France Cable operates a satellite communications system linking Lomé to Europe and the U.S., 24 hours daily. Service is reliable and efficient, especially on the weekends. Current rate is CFA 500 per minute to the U.S. and some countries of Europe, and CFA 300 and CFA 400 for some countries of West Africa. Service to France costs CFA 700 per minute. Telephone connections to cities in Francophone Africa, such as Cotonou and Abidjan, can be made without much delay, but calls to other African cities can be more difficult.

The local telephone company, PTT, has two zones rate on local calls, Lome central is CFA 50 for 2.5 minutes. Lome to other regions is CFA 50 for 45 seconds. PTT has upgraded the satellite communication system. There are two primary providers of mobile phone services, TOGOCELL and TELECELL. The current rate is CFA 50 per 15 seconds.

Post has IVG service to facilitate calls to the Washington, D.C. area. Private telephone accounts, such as AT&T, can be used to connect between the D.C. area and other regions, including international. Toll-free 800 numbers can also be reached using the D.C. connection.

PTT Lomé, in conjunction with France Cable, provides commercial telegraph service 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and 8 a.m. to noon, Sundays and holidays.

The Embassy’s commercial telegraph address is:

Full Name American Embassy Republic of Togo

Telex service to all parts of the world is fair. The Embassy itself has no telex service. The cable is actually sent to PTT Lomé which contacts the Embassy with the message. However, the Embassy has a well-equipped Fax system that operates anywhere throughout the world. The Embassy Fax number is 228-221-7952.

Internet Last Updated: 9/4/2003 1:54 PM

E-mail services are also available between this Embassy and all other U.S. Embassies equipped with this service. The Embassy is now on the OPENNET PLUS system, which allows access to the internet from your office desktop.

Mail and Pouch Last Updated: 9/4/2003 1:56 PM

International airmail service between the U.S. and Lomé can take as long as 1 month. Address international mail as follows:

Full Name C/O American Embassy B.P. 852, Lomé Republic of Togo

Air pouches from Washington take 4-5 days; letter mail arrives about 14 days after its postmark date. Besides letters, only prescription eyeglasses, prescription medicines, and developed film can be airpouched from the U.S. These packages must weigh no more than 2 pounds. But in fact, virtually all packages arrive via air.

Surface-to-air pouches (for magazines, newspapers, and packages over 2 pounds) are normally received at post about 2 weeks after mailing from the U.S. Personal pouch mail packages sent via surface-to-air pouch are limited to a maximum of 45 pounds and 17x18x30 inches in size. Items cannot be registered or insured. Liquids, fragile items, perishables, and explosives are prohibited. Domestic postage rates must be paid. Customs declarations are not required. The Department accepts no responsibility for loss or damage to mailings via pouch facilities. Pouch mail should be addressed as follows:

Official Mail: Full Name 2300 Lomé Place Washington, D.C. 20521-2300

Personal Mail:

Full Name 2300 Lome Place Dulles, VA 20189-2300

Radio and TV Last Updated: 9/4/2003 2:01 PM

There are two government-owned radio stations in Togo, Radio Lomé and Radio Kara. Radio Lomé broadcasts from 5 p.m. to midnight daily, with news broadcast in French and local languages. Radio Kara, in North Togo, broadcasts 97 hours per week. There are 18 FM radio stations in Togo, most of them operating from the Capital, Lomé. The Voice of America (VOA) can be received on FM through a local affiliate station Kanal FM. Radio France International (RFI) and Africa Number One (Africa N°1) operate FM transmiters from Lomé. RFI is also available from Kara, in the North. VOA and the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) transmit short-wave English-language broadcasts to West Africa.

Government-owned TV Togo (one station, one channel) was officially inaugurated in 1973. Programming is in color. Broadcasts are generally in French from 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. weekdays, and from noon to 11:30 p.m. on the weekends. There is a prime-time newscast in French at 8 p.m., which is repeated at 10 p.m. TV fare feature movies, music videos, documentaries, and some American TV situation comedy reruns dubbed into French.

The Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC-TV) can be received with an outside antenna and booster. GBC-TV offers a wider variety of programs than TV Togo. Most programs are in English. They transmit from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. on weekends and holidays. Prime-time news is shown at 7 p.m. and retransmitted at 10 p.m. CNN International is featured from midnight to 1 am. American TV sitcom reruns are shown, as well as feature films.

A cable company in Lomé offers access to CNN International, South African TV and Canal France International for those with special antennas. The company is currently negotiating with several other cable operators, including BET International.

Multisystem TVs and video players/recorders are available locally in the major brands: Philips, Sony, and JVC. They are expensive, averaging $600 or more. Mission personnel should bring TVs and VCRs to post. Multi-system, multispeed equipment is required (NTSC, PAL-B, and PAL-G, SECAM).

The American Employees' Association offers to provide AFRTS connectivity for an intitial refundable deposit and monthly maintenance fee.

Newspapers, Magazines, and Technical Journals Last Updated: 9/4/2003 2:04 PM

The government-owned Togo Presse is published five days a week. Most of the paper is in French with one page (half-page each) in English as well as Ewe and Kabiye, the major Togolese languages. Several independent French-language speaking weeklies can be bought from street hawkers or local bookstores, which also carry the French dailies Le Monde and L’Express, and other French and European magazines. European editions of Time, Newsweek, and the International Herald Tribune are available. Air subscriptions of these publications are available, but they are expensive and arrive with delays.

English-language books can be found on rare occasions in some local shops. Those who have children enrolled at the British School can borrow English-language books from their well-stocked library. English-language videos in the PAL system are also available. There is an annual registration fee of 10,000 CFA. Tapes can then be borrowed by purchasing a video card for 7,500 CFA (10 videos). Those without children attending the British School may borrow tapes by invitation.

Health and Medicine Last Updated: 9/4/2003 2:09 PM

A Joint Peace Corps-Embassy Medical Unit located near the Peace Corps Office provides outpatient medical care. An American Peace Corps Medical Officer (PCMO) either a FNP or a PA, a Western trained Registered Nurse, a full time and part time Laboratory Lab Technician, a secretary and a cook, staffs it. In addition, we have a Post Medical Advisor, a MD, who can be called to the Health Unit to evaluate patients as is necessary.

The Joint Peace Corps-Embassy Medical Unit is open Monday through Friday, from 07:30hrs to 16:00hrs. Walk in is from 07:30-12:15hrs. Afternoons are by appointment only. Please note that Tuesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons are reserved for administrative task. The Medical Unit is closed on American and Togolese holidays. Emergencies are seen at any time.

For medical emergencies out of office hours, the "Duty Medical Officer" should be contacted directly by cell phone number 901-14-88, or through the Marine Security Guard at the Embassy, Post One at 221-29-93 or 04 Ext. 4403. Give him/her your telephone number and the nature of the emergency.

A Health Room, staffed by a Ghanaian trained Registered Nurse, is located on the Embassy Compound. Health information, some vaccinations and treatment of uncomplicated illness and injuries can be obtained there. Office hours are:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 07:30-17:00 Thursday 07:30-12:00 Friday 07:30-12:00

The Department of State Regional Medical Officer (RMO) is currently based in Lagos and makes quarterly visits to Lomé.

The Medical Unit treats day-to-day medical problems, and provides immunizations and limited amounts of medical supplies. It is advisable to bring from the U.S. copies of medical records and medications prescribed for chronic or special conditions.

Bring eyeglass prescriptions with you in case you need emergency replacement. Bring any cleaning solutions/ equipment for contact lenses with you, as you may not be able to find these in Lomé.

Veterinarian services are available and fairly reliable.

Local dental care is adequate for routine care, such as fillings and cleaning, but you should complete any special treatment (endodontal, periodontal, crowns, or oral surgical problems) before coming to post. However, if restorative work is needed, it can be obtained in Accra or Europe.

The Lomé city hospital is below American standards and is not used for health care by the American community. A small missionary hospital staffed by American surgeons is situated 2-1/2 hours north of Lomé. The hospital has an adequate laboratory, x-ray unit, and a well-equipped operating room. However, Polyclinic Saint Joseph's, a private hospital, owned by German trained Doctor, can be used and has been used in life threatening situations and while waiting for the SOS plane to arrive. Lomé physicians, both generalist and specialist, are European or locally-trained, and are called in for consultation on occasion. Serious medical or surgical problems are evacuated by air to Europe or the U.S. under the direction of the Regional Medical Officer.

Obstetrical and diagnostic services are extremely limited. Prenatal care is substandard, and expatriates are med-evaced for delivery. Pregnant women are at increased risk for malaria.

Medical Facilities Last Updated: 8/25/2003 1:43 PM

A Joint Peace Corps-Embassy Medical Unit located near the Peace Corps Office provides outpatient medical care. An American Peace Corps Medical Officer (PCMO) either a FNP or a PA, a Western trained Registered Nurse, a full time and part time Laboratory Lab Technician, a secretary and a cook, staffs it. In addition, we have a Post Medical Advisor, a MD, who can be called to the Health Unit to evaluate patients as is necessary.

The Joint Peace Corps-Embassy Medical Unit is open Monday through Friday, from 07:30hrs to 16:00hrs. Walk in is from 07:30-12:15hrs. Afternoons are by appointment only. Please note that Tuesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons are reserved for administrative task. The Medical Unit is closed on American and Togolese holidays. Emergencies are seen at any time.

For medical emergencies out of office hours, the "Duty Medical Officer" should be contacted directly by cell phone number 901-14-88, or through the Marine Security Guard at the Embassy, Post One at 221-29-93 or 04 Ext. 4403. Give him/her your telephone number and the nature of the emergency.

A Health Room, staffed by a Ghanaian trained Registered Nurse, is located on the Embassy Compound. Health information, some vaccinations and treatment of uncomplicated illness and injuries can be obtained there. Office hours are:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 07:30-17:00 Thursday 07:30-12:00 Friday 07:30-12:00

The Department of State Regional Medical Officer (RMO) is currently based in Lagos and makes quarterly visits to Lomé.

The Medical Unit treats day-to-day medical problems, and provides immunizations and limited amounts of medical supplies. It is advisable to bring from the U.S. copies of medical records and medications prescribed for chronic or special conditions.

Bring eyeglass prescriptions with you in case you need emergency replacement. Bring any cleaning solutions/ equipment for contact lenses with you, as you may not be able to find these in Lomé.

Veterinarian services are available and fairly reliable.

Local dental care is adequate for routine care, such as fillings and cleaning, but you should complete any special treatment (endodontal, periodontal, crowns, or oral surgical problems) before coming to post. However, if restorative work is needed, it can be obtained in Accra or Europe.

The Lomé city hospital is below American standards and is not used for health care by the American community. A small missionary hospital staffed by American surgeons is situated 2-1/2 hours north of Lomé. The hospital has an adequate laboratory, x-ray unit, and a well-equipped operating room. However, Polyclinic Saint Joseph's, a private hospital, owned by German trained Doctor, can be used and has been used in life threatening situations and while waiting for the SOS plane to arrive. Lomé physicians, both generalist and specialist, are European or locally-trained, and are called in for consultation on occasion. Serious medical or surgical problems are evacuated by air to Europe or the U.S. under the direction of the Regional Medical Officer.

Obstetrical and diagnostic services are extremely limited. Prenatal care is substandard, and expatriates are med-evaced for delivery. Pregnant women are at increased risk for malaria.

Community Health Last Updated: 9/4/2003 2:16 PM

The level of sanitation in Lomé is far below that of cities in developed countries. Water from the public system may be contaminated and must be boiled and filtered. Most of the city is not served by a sewer system. Waste and contaminated water are discharged on the beaches. Garbage and trash are collected irregularly. Local government funds for food inspection, insect control, and disease prevention are extremely limited. Therefore, cook locally butchered meat thoroughly, and soak fruits and vegetables in a suitable disinfecting solution.

Many diseases are present in Togo. Some of these diseases are unknown in the U.S. These include malaria, dysentery, typhoid fever, leprosy, Guinea worm infestation, schistosomiasis, skin diseases, and various intestinal parasites, to name a few. For expatriates living in Lomé and observing ordinary sanitary precautions, most of these illnesses are not a hazard. Rabies is present in Togo and care must be taken to avoid infected animals. Childhood diseases such as measles, diphtheria, polio, and strep infections are common. With the advent of chloroquine-resistant Falciparium, malaria has been a major concern for expatriates. Malaria in Togo is a pervasive, year-round disease. The mortality rate among the Togolese is high. Expatriates are extremely susceptible to the disease, and constant attention to preventive medications and mosquito control is necessary.

Preventive Measures Last Updated: 8/25/2003 1:50 PM

Most Americans remain remarkably healthy in Lomé by following a number of preventive measures that soon become routine: Bring water to a rolling boil for 1 minute and then filter when not using a water distiller.

Wash fresh fruits and vegetables well, and soak in chlorine or iodine solutions for 30 minutes, then rinse with boiled water.

Maintain a clean kitchen; foods spoil quickly here so refrigerate and store foods carefully; ensure that servants are not disease carriers by obtaining a pre-employment medical examination; periodic follow up tests for parasites every 6 months, and chest x-rays every 2 years; also ensure that servants are carefully instructed in sanitary working habits.

Be sure that the entire family has received, and remains, up-to-date on, recommended inoculations. Yellow fever is required for entry into Togo. Inoculations recommended are Hemophilius, MMR, Polio, Meningitis, Hepatitis, Tetanus, Rabies, and Typhoid.

Teach children basic health and hygiene practices. Contact with infected soil causes hookworm infestation and larva migraines. Contaminated food and carriers can be the source of several intestinal parasites.

Machine dry or iron all clothes to prevent larval infestation of the skin. Do not swim in or drink from bodies of water or streams of freshwater anywhere in Togo. Schistosomiasis, carried by snails, is prevalent and enters through the skin. Guinea worm is contracted by drinking contaminated water.

The State Department's Office of Medical Services recommends that all Americans take Malaria prophylaxis to prevent malaria. Mefloquine is an effective prophylaxis regimen in Togo and most other areas where there is chloroquine resistance. Mefloquine is safe and well tolerated when given weekly. Doxycyclen has comparable effectiveness if taken the same time on daily basis. However, those unable to take Mefloquine or Doxycycline for one reason or the-other, may be put on Malarone. Malarone is contraindicated in pregnancy and children less than 25lbs of weight

Dosages for the prevention of malaria when using Mefloquine begin 2 weeks before arrival; continue while in Togo and 4 weeks after you leave. For Doxycyclen, start 2 days before arrival and again continue for 4 weeks after you leave. For Malarone, start 2 days before arrival and continue for 7 days after you leave. While in Togo, screen houses, use mosquito nets at night; use repellents and aerosol sprays as necessary; and control local mosquito breeding areas. Malaria can be diagnosed and treated by the medical unit. Malaria is a life-threatening disease.

Employment for Spouses and Dependents Last Updated: 7/28/2003 9:15 AM

There are usually several job opportunities for spouses and dependents of Americans at the Mission. A good knowledge of written and spoken French is necessary to be employed elsewhere in Lomé. Possible positions include: English teachers at the American Cultural Center, private English tutors, translators, secretaries, and administrative assistants.

The Mission encourages spousal employment and offers six Family Member positions that can be encumbered on part-time (minimum of 16 hours per week) or full-time (40 hours per week) basis. These positions are: the community liaison coordinator (CLO), the GSO assistant, the DCM Secretary, the RSO secretary, the consular assistant/Associate, and the regional information management office administrative assistant. In addition to the above, Eligible Family Members may apply for any other opening at the Embassy if they so desire. Some positions are available in organizations associated with the American community; newcomers may be able to fill positions vacated by spouses of departing Embassy officials or other foreigners. U.S.-certified teachers may be hired at the American International School.

Department of State rules and regulations apply to American spouses and dependents. Department requirements include: Departmental authorization to hire; a vacant established position; completion of pre-employment local and full field security investigation in the U.S.; medical clearance; and completion of various personnel forms.

A summer youth employment program (known as Summer Hire Program) hires dependent children (age 18 minimum) of Mission employees during summer vacation. Request information on employment opportunities before arriving at post.

American Embassy - Lome

Post City Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Lomé, the capital and chief commercial center of Togo, is on the Atlantic coast at Togo’s extreme southwest corner. Part of the city lies on a mile-wide sandbar that rises 15–20 feet above the sea. The center of the city is a 20-minute walk from the Ghanaian border. Lomé shares the climate of Togo’s southern zone, and its sea breeze blows pleasantly all year.

The major central thoroughfares are lined with small shops, occasional parks, and countless street vendors. In the Grand Marché, a bustling three-story building, vendors sell food, cloth (largely wax-print cottons locally made or imported from England and The Netherlands), housewares, small fetish objects, and almost anything else found in Lomé. The railroad, as well as some buildings and roads still in use today, were built by the Germans.

Only main city streets have lights. Some streets are paved; others are of red laterite earth and sand—dusty in the dry season, muddy when it rains, and usually full of potholes.

Most buildings are cement over softbrick or concrete blocks. However, traditional rectangular one- or two-room mudbrick dwellings with corrugated metal or palm-thatch roofs built along the walls of a compound are still common. Residential areas with large houses include Lomé proper, the suburb of Tokoin above the lagoons, Kodjoviakope, and a “gated” community located near the University of Benin.

Approximately 480 Americans live in Togo, including Embassy and Peace Corps personnel. Calls by American flagships are rare. Nationals of over 30 countries make up the foreign community of more than 5,000, most of whom live in Lomé.

The larger businesses are, for the most part, controlled by the French, who make up a community of about 2,900. A small but economically important Lebanese population (about 400) also engages in commerce. Lomé has 10 resident foreign diplomatic missions, 12 honorary consulates, U.N. and other country aid organizations, and regional banks.

The Post and Its Administration Last Updated: 7/24/2003 11:47 AM

Lomé is a SEP post and its full-time Americans are the Ambassador, Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM), public affairs officer, economic/commercial officer, consular/political officer, management officer, general services officer, regional security officer, two information management officers, three regional communications technicians, one secretary, Peace Corps director, two American Peace Corps associate directors, Peace Corps Medical Contractor and about 80-90 Peace Corps volunteers. The Marine Security Detachment includes the detachment commander and five watchstanders. Since 1994, when the USAID/Togo mission closed, USAID projects have been managed regionally and through NGOs.

The Embassy has various components. The Executive, Economic, Consular/ Political, Security, Communications, and Management Office Sections are located on the main Chancery compound. The Embassy compound is located in an African market area on the corner of Rue Kouenou and Beniglato Rue no. 15, two blocks from the coastal road and five blocks east of the city’s business center. The offices of the Ambassador, DCM, consular/political officer, economic/commercial officer, and communicators are housed in the two-story Chancery building. The compound has a paved driveway and parking area, and two annexes. Annex I is a two-story building occupied by the Management Office and most administrative support offices such as the GSO office, cashier, and other administrative services. Annex II houses the Recreation Association (AECWAL) office, a small Health Unit, the Self-help Coordinator office, mailroom and the CLO office. Additionally, one of the warehouses and the Regional Information Management Center (RIMC) and a small storage area are located adjacent to Annex I.

The Public Affairs office is located in the American Cultural Center across from the Chancery and has a direct telephone line (221–2166). Public Affairs office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday and 7:30 am to 12:30 p.m. on Friday. The Public Affairs office has educational exchange programs, cultural programs including support to English-language teachers, lectures in French and English by visiting experts and artists, motion picture showings, art and photo exhibits, and other cultural presentations of the U.S. Government. Public Affairs also sponsors visits of Togolese citizens to the U.S. The Cultural Center circulates the French Wireless File (produced in Washington) to writers and editors at all publications and to radio and television and publishes and distributes 2,000 copies of a quarterly news bulletin, USA*Togo. The Cultural Center’s Martin Luther King, Jr. lending library has nearly 4,000 books in French and English available to the public. The Library also provides reference, referral, outreach services and Internet. As one of the few information resource centers in Togo, the Library serves as a source of current and balanced information. The American Cultural Center's Library is open from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9:00 a.m. to noon on Saturday. A video or ABC World News is shown on Wednesday and Friday afternoons and Saturday mornings.

An Embassy-owned telephone system (221–2991 to 94) serves the Chancery and American Cultural Center. Embassy hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Thursday with a 45 minute lunch break, and 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Friday with no lunch break.

The Peace Corps director, associate directors, and staff occupy office space at 48 Rue Kayigan Lawson in the Kodjoviakope neighborhood (telephone 221-06-14). Peace Corps presently supports an annual average of 90 Volunteers who are posted throughout the five regions of Togo. Since Peace Corps began to work in Togo in 1962 it has provided over 1,700 Volunteers. Volunteers' work with the Togolese people emphasizes low-cost solutions that make maximum use of local resources. Volunteers work to provide assistance in the areas of small business development, girls' education and empowerment, natural resource management and community health and AIDs prevention. Secondary projects involve Volunteers in Guinea Worm eradication, community water and sanitation projects, and income generating activities. The PC/Togo Gender and Development committee also supports an extensive scholarship program that encourages Togolese girls to remain in school.


Temporary Quarters Last Updated: 7/20/2004 5:42 AM

The Embassy has quarters prepared for arriving personnel in most cases, although employees may stay in temporary quarters until their permanent housing is ready for occupancy.

Lomé has three international class hotels: the Hotel Sarakawa, the Hotel du 2 Fevrier, and the Ibis Hotel. Other major hotels include the Hotel Palm Beach.

The 2 Fevrier, located in the section of town where government ministries are located, opened in 1980. From its top floor, it offers a panoramic view of both the ocean and the city, and has a gourmet restaurant, buffet, coffeeshop, a 1,000-seat auditorium/banquet room, conference rooms, tennis, swimming pool, telex, and drycleaning services.

The Hotel Sarakawa, which opened in 1979 and was fully renovated in 1999, is situated on the beach about 2 miles from the center of town. It offers an Olympic-size pool, tennis courts, horseback riding, private beach, restaurants, bar and grill, nightclub, casino, boutiques, and beauty shop.

Permanent Housing Last Updated: 7/20/2004 5:45 AM

Housing in Lomé consists of U.S. Government-leased houses located throughout town. Housing is preassigned on the basis of rank, family size and composition, and availability with the approval of the Embassy Housing Committee. The Ambassador’s residence and Marine House are designated residences.

The Ambassador’s residence, a long-term lease property, is located in the section of Lomé housing government offices. The property includes a two-story residence, an enclosed garage and laundry area, separate quarters with shower-toilets for servants, lawns and gardens, gravel driveway, swimming pool, and tennis court. There is a separate guestroom and bath next to the pool. Three bedrooms and three baths are on the second floor of the main residence. The bedrooms and adjoining hallway have adequate closet space. A large living room, a dining room that seats 18 comfortably and 32 maximum, a family room, a small study, entrance hall, lavatories, kitchen, pantry, and storage areas are on the first floor. Adjoining the dining room is a terrace with wide stairs leading down to a large cemented patio in the garden suitable for large-scale entertaining. The upstairs floors are tiled. The reception rooms, stairs, and second floor landing are of marble.

The house traditionally assigned to the DCM is a short-term lease property. The one-story residence has a swimming pool, with shower and changing room, covered garage, three bedrooms, four bathrooms, a study, dining and living rooms, kitchen, large yard with covered bar/reception area for representational functions and separate quarters with bath/toilets for servants. It is located in a residential area near the British School in "La caisse", a 15-20-minute drive from the Embassy.

The Mission currently leases 15 single-family residences. All are comfortable quarters. U.S. Government furniture is provided, including living room, dining room, and bedroom furniture. All houses are air-conditioned.

For more detailed information regarding housing conditions, address questions to the Management officer. Descriptions of all residences are provided to OBO Washington.

Furnishings Last Updated: 7/28/2003 9:09 AM

Except for the Ambassador and the Marine Security Guard Detachment, you must provide your own linens, tableware, and kitchenware. The Embassy will provide dishes, silverware, glasses, cooking utensils, and bed and bath linens until your airfreight arrives. The Welcome Kit must be returned once you receive your airfreight shipment.

Bring supplementary and small decorative items such as wall hangings, vases, ashtrays, small tables, and bookcases. Do not bring antiques, irreplaceable paintings, Persian rugs, ornamental metalware, and other items subject to rust, mildew, or humidity damage, unless they will be kept in air-conditioned areas.

All houses are furnished with carpets, draperies or curtains, and lamps. Additional curtain and upholstery materials may be obtained from abroad or locally, but the selection here is limited and expensive. Some local furniture makers do competent work.

There is limited selection of kitchen utensils, dishes, and glassware from France and Germany available locally. However, they are very expensive. Bring small kitchen appliances such as a blender, food processor, toaster, waffle iron, popcorn popper, ice cream maker, iron, etc. Bring books, a stereo with voltage regulator, records or tapes, TV, VCR, hobby kits, and photographic equipment. Post’s TM2 will provide additional information.

Heavy umbrellas, insulated picnic boxes, grills, Thermos jugs, and canvas or cotton tarpaulins, often available but very expensive in Lomé, are good to use at the beach. Consider shipping these items.

Utilities and Equipment Last Updated: 7/28/2003 9:09 AM

The U.S. Government provides all Embassy homes with stoves, refrigerators, freezers, air-conditioners, automatic washers, and dryers. Water pressure is erratic. The Embassy has installed electric water pumps and reservoirs at all mission houses. Toilet and bath facilities are simple, usually a room with a flush toilet, shower and wash basin, and a bathtub in the master bathroom. Kitchens generally have one shallow sink. The Embassy provides each residence with a water filter or distiller. Bring a large pot to boil water in.

Electricity is 220v, 50-cycle, AC. Although small 110v appliances without motor are usable with stepdown transformers, any 110v appliance with a motor must be 50-60 cycles. Bring transformers for personal equipment of 750 watts or more. The Embassy has a limited supply of voltage regulators and transformers for issue to mission personnel. Transformers for lower power equipment are sold locally but are expensive. Power fluctuations are common and power failures occasionally occur. A 110v voltage regulator, more readily available in the U.S., can be used with a stepdown transformer to avoid equipment damage in case of power surges. Each residence has a diesel powered generator to provide electricity in case of power disruptions from the local electric company.

All local electrical outlets are European and require round-pronged plugs rather than the flat American type. Bring a generous supply of adapters for American equipment.

Clear, bayonet-based bulbs (for wall and ceiling fixtures and locally purchased lamps) are available in Lomé, as are the 220v screw-type bulbs needed for U.S. lamps. Tape recorders, phonographs, clocks, and any other 60-cycle-only motorized, electrical appliances must be adapted to 50 cycles.

Write the Embassy to see if local servicing facilities are available for particular American brands of equipment. Service for any type of equipment is difficult and, at times, impossible for brands not represented locally by reputable dealers. Prices for most electrical equipment are high. Repair and maintenance work is generally fair but expensive.

Food Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Lomé has a good supply of fresh foods, although supply can be seasonal. Local vegetables include leaf lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, green beans, sweet peppers, cabbage, eggplant, spring onions, onions, carrots, palm hearts, potatoes, sweet yams, African yams, hot peppers, mint, parsley, and several other herbs. The local fruits available are avocado, lemon, lime, orange, pineapple, banana, papaya, guava, grapefruit, cantaloupe, watermelon, coconut, mango, and passion fruit. Imported apples, pears, kiwi, and a few other European fruits can sometimes be found. Local fruits and vegetables are generally available in open markets throughout the year. Imported fresh fruits and vegetables are sometimes available in supermarkets at high prices.

Fresh meat, imported and domestic, includes beef, veal, pork, lamb and poultry. Locally made and imported French and German sausage, páté, ham, and other prepared meats are available in the butcher section of local supermarkets. Duck, rabbit and guinea fowl are available at the local market, as well as the local delicacy, agouti (bush rat). Fresh fish, shrimp, lobster, mussels, hard-shell crabs and other seafood are sold in season either in the local market or in supermarkets.

Imported fresh foods arrive by air every week and some by ship every 2 weeks. These stocks include meat, cheese, fish, vegetables (artichokes, mushrooms, celery, endive, and lettuce), and fresh fruits. A wide variety of wines, herbs, and spices are imported, as are specialty items like canned Chinese and Lebanese foods. Prices for imported items can be high. Imported frozen foods are available at several locations, including meats, poultry, fish, fruits, vegetables, prepared foods, and desserts.

Imported UHT and powdered milk are readily available, as are puddings and whipping cream. Local milk products such as yogurt and sour cream can be found in the supermarkets. A local Danish-run factory produces ice cream. Some better quality, but very high-priced, imported brands are also available in supermarkets. Many people at post bring their own ice cream makers. Good French breads and fair pastries are made in Lom‚.

Coca-Cola, Sprite, Fanta, soda water, tonic, and a variety of other local soft drinks are bottled here. Good beer is also bottled by a German-established Togolese factory.

Most Americans shop at one or more of the five modern supermarkets in Lomé. In the heart of the business district is a lively congested Grand Marché, a three-story, open-air market where Togolese sell their fresh produce, fish, and other foodstuffs. Clothes, household items, glass beads, wax cloths, and an endless variety of goods can be found. Many intriguing items can be discovered on a walking tour of the central business area, which abounds in small shops selling a wide variety of items. Every “quartier” has its own open market. Many small provision stores, mostly run by members of the Indian community, are located around town. Necessary items are rarely all available in one place and sometimes not at the expected place, so shopping requires several trips and lots of time.

Most Embassy personnel order authorized consumables during their first year at post.

Diplomatic personnel are allowed duty-free import privileges during their entire tour, and nondiplomatic personnel during their first 6 months at post. Catalogs from American companies and from duty-free export houses in Europe are available at the Community Liaison Office. There are also supplies available via Internet. Duty-free imports usually take 3–4 months to arrive by sea. European brands of baby food or disposable diapers are available (French products) in stores. A popular American brand is usually available but is very expensive. Those who prefer American brands should bring a large supply. Fresh formula powders, including Similac, are usually available locally.

Due to the sometimes sporadic supply of foodstuffs, specialty items, and name brands, it is recommended for you to use any extra weight allowance to ship favorite items, toiletries, paper products, baby food, baking items, pet foods, etc.


Men Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

One or two dark suits are needed for official appointments and official functions. Formal clothing (lightweight dinner jacket and black dress trousers) is optional. At “black tie”occasions a dark business suit is acceptable. Sport shirts and slacks or safari suits suffice for most social engagements. Cotton or cotton-polyester blend slacks and short-sleeved shirts are advisable for road travel. Drycleaning services are available and reasonably priced. Clothing wears out quickly due to frequent washing. All synthetic fabrics are less comfortable in the heat and humidity than cotton, linen or cotton-blend fabrics, or tropical wools.

Bring enough shoes for your tour of duty (including sandals and sports shoes), as particular sizes and styles may be scarce. A light sweater, a good supply of shirts, handkerchiefs, underwear, socks, a lightweight raincoat, and an umbrella are needed.

Women Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Simple dresses are worn at daytime and evening affairs. Cocktail dresses are often worn, and more formal long gowns are worn on few occasions. A light wrap or shawl may be useful at night during the cooler rainy season. Outdoor clothing and sometimes a sweater are convenient for trips to the interior.

A limited supply of imported dress materials, as well as an extensive supply of African-style cotton prints, both imported and locally manufactured, are available in the market area. Dressmakers do adequate work with supervision. A few expensive boutiques carry dresses and fancy dresses and accessories. Hats, gloves, and stockings are seldom worn. Lingerie in cotton or the cooler synthetic fabrics is usually not available. Bring comfortable, cool footwear sufficient for your stay in Togo. Walking on Lomé’s sandy streets is easier with sensible shoes. Several pairs of sandals are suggested.

Children Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Bring a good supply of outdoor, hot-weather washable children’s clothes, underwear, and shoes and arrange for future needs through U.S. mail-order houses. Some sandals, underwear, and clothes are sold locally. Local seamstresses do a fair job making children’s clothing.

Bring plenty of suitable sportswear and equipment for the entire family, including tennis or golf clothes and equipment as these are either expensive or not available locally. Extra swimsuits for each member of the family are recommended because they wear out quickly.

Many people order clothing from mail-order merchants and have it shipped through the pouch. There is no APO.

Office Attire Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Dress for men at the office is less formal than in Washington. Safari suits or slacks and shirt combinations may be worn during office hours though jacket and tie is often the norm. Women wear warm-weather dresses, blouses, and slacks or skirts to the office.

Supplies and Services

Supplies Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Consider bringing your own brand of toiletries, cosmetics, medicines, etc., as many American brand products are not available. Also bring wooden or plastic hangers; ice cube trays and an ice chest; strong bottle and canopener; adhesives; rust preventive and remover; tool kit; sewing supplies (zippers, buttons, thread, etc.); shoelaces; extra eyeglasses and sunglasses; electric iron (220v), ironing board, and cover; and transformers for any 110v appliances such as sewing machines, blenders, phonographs, TV and videotape recorders, computers, toasters, coffeepots, etc. Such nonfood items like film (35mm), audio and video cassettes, and personal care products can be purchased locally. Bring a supply of stamps.

Basic Services Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

In general, community services are not well developed, and materials are often not available. American staff members may use Embassy-employed craftsmen (carpenters, electricians, plumbers, auto mechanics) for nonofficial personal services. Work is done on a time-available basis, and labor and materials are charged to the employee.

Drycleaning is reliable at the Hotel 2 Fevrier or Sarakawa, and at one drycleaning shop in town. Laundry is done by household help under supervision. Several beauty shops are recommended, as are several barbers in Lomé. Some Togolese barbers will come to your home for a moderate fee. Shoe repair is satisfactory, but the materials used are usually of poor quality. Tailors or dressmakers do adequate-to-good work, but doing your own repairs and special sewing is sometimes more satisfactory. Wicker and wooden furniture can be made locally and wears well in humid climate. Due to high humidity, mildew is a problem.

There are several Internet providers in Lomé. Service is relatively reliable, although prices are somewhat higher than in the U.S.

Domestic Help Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

New officers often retain a predecessor’s servants. Other domestic help can eventually be found, particularly by asking servants of other Embassy families to recommend friends. The Community Liaison Office (CLO) has a file of persons seeking employment. Domestic help is readily available and cheap, but well-trained servants, especially cooks, are not easy to find. Employees should plan to train new staff members in standards of cleanliness for food preparation and personal hygiene. Servants occasionally speak some English as well as advanced French. Need for servants depends on the employees’ official positions, family size, and needs. A more senior officer with a family might employ a cook, housekeeper, gardener/day guard, and nanny for small children. The average household employs a combination cook-housekeeper, a gardener/day guard, and a nanny if small children are present. Wages may vary according to skill and experience. Because the Embassy provides only night guards at all homes, many gardeners serve as day guards as well.

The employer normally provides white or khaki uniforms for stewards and cooks. For wage information, see Cost-of-Living Report DSP–23 or write to the Community Liaison office (CLO) for a wage scale. Employers must pay Togolese social security benefits amounting to 18.1% of a servant’s basic monthly salary. The employer must withdraw 2.4% from the servant’s salary, which is the servant's contribution to the fund, and submit along with the employer’s contribution at the end of each quarter. The Embassy’s personnel assistant will help Mission employees to register their servants with the Caisse de Compensation (social security) and will assist in making these payments, but the employer retains ultimate responsibility.

Religious Activities Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Baptist, Seventh-day Adventist, Roman Catholic, Church of Christ, Islamic, Lutheran, Protestant, Pentecostal, and Methodist places of worship can be found in Lomé. Most services are in French and Ewe and occasional Protestant services are in English. An English-language nondenominational Christian service meets every Sunday at the Hotel 2 Fevrier and an English-language Roman Catholic mass is celebrated each Sunday at the cathedral in Lomé.


Dependent Education

At Post Last Updated: 7/20/2004 5:47 AM The American International School in Lomé, established in 1967, follows the general academic curriculum for American schools and receives grant support from the Department of State. The private, co-educational international school, encompassing preschool through grade 8, received accreditation in 1999. A correspondence course is also available for high school students. The school had its first high school graduate in 1999. The school year extends from September to June. The school day begins at 7:30 a.m. and ends at 1:00 p.m.

Instruction is in English. The school is housed in a large two-story building, and has a library, science room, and music room. For the 2003-2004 school year, enrollment was 45 students with 3 full-time teachers and 7 part-time teachers. Class sizes ranged from 6–8 students. In addition to basic academic subjects, AISL’s curriculum includes French, art, music, drama, P.E., and health. Annual tuition fee is $5,000 (preschool is $2,000). A one-time enrollment fee of $500 is also charged.

None of the several Togolese primary and secondary schools in Lomé is recommended. Lomé has one very good French government-supported lycée. The school ranges from kindergarten through the end of secondary school and prepares students for French high school. The school program is identical to that of schools in France. Instruction is conducted in French; inability to speak the language presents a major drawback for all levels except grade 1. Several privately run French-language nursery schools for 2–5-year-olds are open most of the year.

In addition to the American and French schools, the privately owned International Primary School offers an accredited American-based curriculum in English for children 2–12. The British School of Lome‚ offers 3–16-year-olds instruction in English following the British system and prepares high schoolers for the international baccalaureate.

Away From Post Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM Some high school-aged children attend boarding schools. Consult the Office of Overseas Schools (A/OS) for specific information.

Higher Education Opportunities Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

A number of intellectual opportunities exist at post. Computer training for Word Perfect, Excel for Windows, and Word for Windows is offered at the Embassy in the afternoons. Reasonably priced French lessons at varying levels of proficiency are also available. The American Cultural Center hosts programs on local and political issues.

Recreation and Social Life Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Lomé is a generally pleasant place and offers the opportunity for year-round sports activities. Many Americans enjoy touring incountry and taking short trips to the several neighboring cuntries which can be easily and quickly reached by road.

Sports Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Swimming is possible in hotel pools. Due to the heavy surf and a dangerous undertow, saltwater swimming is limited to certain beaches. The sea and lagoons offer limited fishing. Lac Togo, located about 30 minutes from Lomé, has sailing, windsurfing, and pedal boating. Be advised however, that there is a possibility of contracting schistosomiasis (a parasitic disease found in fresh water) although there have been no confirmed cases.

Several tennis clubs, including hotel clubs that Americans can join, are available, as well as volleyball, badminton, and table tennis facilities. The golf club has a nine-hole course about 8 miles from Lomé. There is a riding club at the Hotel Sarakawa, and another near the airport. There are several fitness centers offering karate, weightlifting, bodybuilding, aerobics, and sports therapy massage.

Soccer is the principal spectator sport. Tennis, basketball, volleyball, and handball are other sports that are enjoyed by both Americans and Togolese. Bring sports equipment and supplies with you. Sporting stores are few and merchandise that is available is expensive.

Touring and Outdoor Activities Last Updated: 7/20/2004 5:50 AM

In Lomé itself, tourist attractions include the National Museum and the Village Artisanal Center where handicrafts are made and sold, and the voodoo fetish market

Outside of Lomé, you may join tours of Togo and Benin arranged by hotels for their guests or by the Bureau of Tourism. Most in-country touring is done individually by private car. A main road extends from Lomé northward over the Burkina Faso border. The road is paved and suitable for motoring, but the driver must be alert for animals and people on the road. Avoid night driving in the countryside.

The paved coastal road between Ghana to Benin provides a continuous view of beaches, coconut palms, and small, scattered fishing villages. About 18 miles east of Lomé and a short distance inland is Lac Togo, a lagoon with a hotel, restaurant, bar, swimming pool, and boat dock next door. Residents visit the lake for a mild change in scenery; visitors from neighboring countries appreciate its French cuisine. On the hillside bordering the lake is Togoville, a village that was the site of the first permanent German settlement in Togo. It can be reached by car or pirogue.

An automobile trip to Kpalime and its environs can include the Centre Artisanal in Kloto, the Blind School and the Chateau Viale, which offers a mountain view and an occasional glimpse of Lake Volta.

Two hours beyond Kpalime brings you to the Akowa waterfall, just 7 miles from Badou. The Akowa waterfall, 35 meters high, descends vertically from an underground spring. It is accessible to the reasonably hardly. Following an animal trail, under vines and over rotting logs, one must hike for nearly one-half hour before reaching the allegedly therapeutic falls. The scenery is beautiful. Guides must be hired at the village. The trip can be made in one long day, or visitors can stay at a hotel in Badou.

North of Atakpame, you journey more deeply into Togo’s traditional culture. Acceptable but very modest hotels at Atakpame and Sokode provide overnight lodging. Many visit the game park at Fazao in central Togo, which suffers from a lack of wildlife at present, however. The hotel at Lama-Kara offers good accommodations and a swimming pool. Farther north, the traditional African-architecture accommodations in the Keran reserve are adequate.

Places of interest in the neighboring country of Benin (also French-speaking) are within easy driving distance from Lomé and include: Ouidah, the center of voodoo and the site of an old Portuguese fortress whose museum houses relics of the slave trade and illustrates cultural exchanges between Brazil and Africa; Cotonou, Benin’s administrative capital and major city; the villages of Lac Nakous and Ganvie, housing 25,000 people and built on stilts in the middle of the lake; Porto Novo, 19 miles from Cotonou, which has a museum of handicrafts; and Abome, a day’s drive from Lomé and the seat of the ancient kingdom of Abomey (1600–1900), with an interesting historical museum in a former palace.

Film, including Polaroid, is available but expensive. Developing of both black-and-white and color film can be done in Lomé, but many people send film out of the country for processing.

R&R paid travel is to a designated city within the United States.

Entertainment Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

For those who like to dine out, Lomé has a number of good restaurants offering French cuisine as well as Chinese, German, Italian, Lebanese, Ethiopian, Vietnamese, and traditional Togolese dishes. Restaurants are comparable to those in U.S. cities. Lomé has many nightclubs and discotheques, including those at the major hotels. Saturdays are disco nights in Lomé, and discos are generally crowded and lively, with a variety of music and atmosphere. The Hotel Palm Beach, the Sarakawa, the 2 Fevrier, and the Hotel de la Paix all have casinos with tables for Blackjack and Roulette.

The American, German, and French Cultural Centers are active in Lomé, offering scheduled monthly activities, as well as occasional special programs such as jazz and classical music concerts, art exhibits, and other cultural offerings.

Foreign films and a few American films (with the soundtrack dubbed in French) are shown at three cinemas. Sound equipment, projectors, seats, and overall cleanliness could be better at some.

The Marines show Navy Motion Picture Service films at the Marine House when available. A small video club at the American International School of Lomé has a selection of VHS NTSC tapes.

The Embassy has a small lending library of donated paperbacks in the CLO office. The American Cultural Center library, which is open to the public, is well stocked with American periodicals, books in French and English, and some recordings of American music. The German Cultural Center has books available for public use. The British School has a large book and video (PAL system) library available for those who have children enrolled in their school or otherwise sponsored. Bookshops in Lomé are well supplied with French books and periodicals but quite limited in English-language periodicals and books. Avid readers should bring a supply of reading material and arrange to receive subsequent mailings from one or two book clubs.

Other activities available in Lomé include dance classes and lessons and the International Choir.

Since both Accra and Cotonou are within three hours of Lomé, Americans often visit these cities for a day or weekend of shopping and sightseeing.

Social Activities

Among Americans Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM For most personnel, the home is the center of evening activities such as cocktail parties, barbecues, dinners, and card games. Other social activities may also include several dances a year, occasional concerts, and national day celebrations.

Party supplies such as card tables and chairs, patio lights, flatware, dishes, and glasses may be borrowed from the Embassy.

International Contacts Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM China, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Nigeria, Libya, all have embassies in Lomé, and several countries are represented by Honorary Consuls. The U.N. has a resident representative and personnel from various nations working in Togo. The Commission of the European Union is represented by a large mission. Several nations have technical assistance teams. Rotary, Lions, Zonta and Soroptimist Clubs are active. A newly formed International Women’s Association provides opportunities to make friends quickly with women of other nationalities and engage in charitable work.

Official Functions

Nature of Functions Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Official functions in Togo are often sit-down dinners and cocktail receptions, but informal luncheons, receptions and buffets are occasionally given. Officers may expect to participate in dedication ceremonies, seminars, opening sessions, memorial speeches, arrival and departure ceremonies for visiting dignitaries, etc. Usually dark suit or conservative dress is worn.

Because of the small size of Lomé's diplomatic community, junior officers and staff personnel may expect to attend functions at which the highest officials of the government are present.

In spite of a certain reticence to reciprocate invitations, the Togolese are pleasant, friendly, and easy to meet. Ability to speak French considerably enhances social contacts.

Standards of Social Conduct Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Bring 100–200 calling cards for formal calls on government officials. Additional cards with your local address, etc., can be printed locally, but are expensive. Spouses should bring a modest supply of personal name cards. “Mr. And Mrs.” cards and informal notes are also useful. Invitation cards may be printed locally and should be in French. Obtain engraved cards and invitations before arrival at post.

Special Information Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Send shipments to post through the U.S. Despatch Agent and address to:

The American Ambassador American Embassy (your initials) Lomé, Togo

The Embassy will handle customs clearance and delivery on the receipt of bills of lading. Waterproof and steelband all shipments, be sure crates are solidly built, and keep liftvans under 5,000 pounds to avoid damage and to facilitate handling. Automobiles are now shipped unboxed and have been received with minimal damage.

Insure all goods against damage and theft. A floater policy on personal and household belongings is advisable.

Post Orientation Program

Newcomers are met on arrival in Lomé. An orientation tour and interview are conducted soon after arrival. New arrivals are escorted to various Mission activities and will meet all Mission members socially within a few days. All newcomers/families are assigned a Mission sponsor who will assist them in settling in. The CLO assists all newcomers and provides welcome packets and any other necessary information they may need.


Parking is available on site although not necessarily within the compound.

Notes For Travelers

Getting to the Post Last Updated: 8/25/2003 2:15 PM

Air travel to Lomé is the only feasible transportation for visitors traveling long distances. If advance notice is given, incoming official visitors are met by Embassy personnel. As a reminder, Country Clearance is required for all official visits to Togo.

Travel by car from Accra, Cotonou, or Lagos is normally possible. Official visitors coming by road from Ghana or Benin can be met if an estimated time of arrival at the border with Togo is given. The Embassy routinely coordinates with Embassies Accra and Cotonou to arrange the most efficient transportation plan to support official travelers visiting one or more of these posts. Local transport facilities are not recommended.

Whether your arrival is by air or road, advance notification to the Embassy will facilitate customs and immigration clearance. If you arrive after office hours, the Marine Security Guard will be able to contact the duty officer.

Customs, Duties, and Passage

Customs and Duties Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

All Mission members are entitled to import personal articles duty free within the first 6 months after arrival. Diplomats are entitled to duty-free privileges during their entire tour.

Passage Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Visas for Togo are issued by French consular offices in countries with no Togolese diplomatic mission. A visa and proof of yellow fever vaccination are required for entry into Togo.

Pets Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Dogs and cats being imported into Togo must have a current rabies vaccination and a certificate of good health issued within 48 hours of departure. If possible, avoid traveling through other African countries en route to Togo with your pet as Togo requires special permits, which are difficult to arrange. It is suggested that pets should be sent by air directly to Lomé. Although available locally, pet supplies are very expensive. Plan to ship these items if possible.

Firearms and Ammunition Last Updated: 7/24/2003 2:20 PM

Post recommends that you do not bring firearms or ammunition to post. No clubs for sport or target shooting exist. Should an individual wish to bring firearms to Togo, please contact the Embassy well in advance of arrival, and be prepared to provide the make, model, and serial number for any weapons he proposes to import and the quantity of ammunition. If the Embassy concurs with the proposal, the information will be provided to the Ministry of Interior. Upon arrival the items will be confiscated for verification against the provided information. The owner will be required to complete paperwork asking for permission to retain the weapon in Togo. If granted, the owner will receive a permit, and if not, the weapon will have to be exported. Decisions are made on a case-by-case basis.

Hunting is legal with an appropriate permit from the Ministry of the Environment. A hunting permit can be sought after approval of a weapons permit.

Ammunition is not readily available for purchase in Togo.

Currency, Banking, and Weights and Measures Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Togo's currency is the CFA franc (Communaute Financiere Africaine) which is fixed at 100 CFA to one French franc, and fluctuates in relation to the U.S. dollar. The official rate of exchange in 1999 ranged between 570 and 650 CFA francs to the dollar. The Embassy’s Budget and Fiscal Section has exchange facilities for officials. All local payments must be made in CFA francs.

Commercial banks in Togo include: Ecobank, Union Togolaise de Banque (UTB), Banque Internationale pour l'Afrique Occidentale (BIAO), and Banque Togolaise pour le Commerce et l'Industrie (BTCI).

Societe Nationale d'Investissement (SNI) also accepts commercial deposits. The Banque Centrale des Etats de l’Afrique de l’Ouest (BCEAO) is the Togo branch of the seven-nation, money issuing bank and does not accept normal commercial deposits.

Commercial banks provide checking facilities, sell travelers checks, and will accept currency, drafts, and travelers checks. Banks charge for service when a deposit in dollars is made to a franc account and do not return canceled checks with periodic statements. Persons assigned to Lomé should open a checking account with an American bank having “bank-by-mail” services.

The metric system of weights and measures is used.

Taxes, Exchange, and Sale of Property Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM


Restrictions on using and selling automobiles in Togo are discussed under Transportation. A wide variety of European and Japanese cars can be purchased locally. However, they will not meet U.S. environmental-protection import requirements for shipment to the U.S. when tour of duty ends.

No ceiling is imposed on the amount of CFA francs you can legally import. The CFA franc is freely convertible into French francs. However, permission must be obtained from the Togolese Government to convert CFA in dollars, except in the case of official personnel to whom the privilege is extended automatically.


Mission personnel are paid through RAMC Paris with their salaries deposited to a U.S. bank account. American officials do not pay personal income taxes to the Togolese Government.

Embassy permission is necessary to dispose of personal property valued at more than $180 and imported duty free.

Recommended Reading Last Updated: 12/31/2001 6:00 PM

Few specific descriptions of Togo in English are available to the public. Most public libraries have the standard selection of recent books on formerly British Africa that may have some pertinence to Togo. Writings on formerly French African territories often contain a section on Togo. The French Embassy and information Services have published excellent pamphlets.

Consult the American Association of Foreign Service Women (AAFSW) in the Foreign Service Lounge and the Overseas Briefing Center at the National Foreign Affairs Training Center.

Articles in various news magazines, such as Time, Newsweek, and The Economist have carried the events of the past few years.

General Cornevin, Robert. Histoire du Togo. Editions Berger-Levtault: Paris, 1969. General history of Togo with interesting chapters on early Togolese history, a long selection on the colonial period, and details of colonial administration.

Decalo, Samuel. Historical Dictionary of Togo. Scarecrow Press: Metuchen, New Jersey, 1976.

Francois, Yvonne. Le Togo. Karthala, Paris, 1993.

Knoll, Arthur J. Togo Under Imperial Germany, 1884-1914. Hoover Institute Press: Stanford, 1978.

Levtzion, Nehemia. Muslims and Chiefs in West Africa. Clarendon Press: Oxford, 1968. The Dagomba, Mamprusi, and Gonja areas of northern Ghana, the Chokossi State centered around Mango in northern Togo, and another part of the Kotokoli of north central Togo.

Packer, George. The Village of Waiting.

Piot, Charles. Remotely Global: Village Modernity in West Africa. Chicago University Press, 1999. A recent ethnography of the Kabiye.

Reindorf, Carl Christian. The History of Gold Coast and Asante. Panther House: New York. Early Togolese history including the arrival of the Mina to the Aneho area.

Rosenthal, Judy. Possession, Ecstasy, and Law in Ewe Voodoo. University Press of Virginia, 1998.

Yagla, Wen'saa Ogma. L'Edification de la Nation Togolaise. Librarie- Editions l'Harmattan: Paris, 1978.

Other Books Aithnard, K.M. Some Aspects of Cultural Policy in Togo. UNESCO: Studies and the Documents on Cultural Policies, 1976.

Carey, Joyce. Mr. Johnston. Harper & Row: New York. An English administrator’s frustration and a young Nigerian employee’s bewilderment and disappointment on a bush road development scheme.

Carpenter, Allan and James. Frostman. Togo. PLB: Enchantment of Africa Series, 1977.

Conton, William. The African. This novel, by a Sierra Leonean, depicts the path from village hut to dominant politician’s villa.

Drowder, Michael. West Africa Under Colonial Rule. Hutchinson & Co., Ltd.: London, 1970. Africa in the mid-19th century, subsequent imposition of colonial rule, and local efforts to resist various colonial powers. Includes a section on Togo.

Decalo, Samuel. Army Rule in Africa: Studies in Military History. Yale University Press: New Haven.

July, Robert W. A History of the African People. Faber & Faber: London, 1970. A well-written, accurate, and up-to-date history of Africa with good maps, pictures, and excellent bibliographies.

Laye, Camara. The African Child. (L'Enfant Noir, also The Dark Child). Fontana press. A warm and moving autobiography of the youth of a well-educated Guinean under French colonial rule.

Oliver, Roland and J.D. Fage. A Short History of Africa. Penguin African Library: Baltimore, 1966. Paperback. Excellent introduction to African history.

Piraux, Maurice. Togo Today. Editions Jeune Afrique: Paris, 1977. Good touristic summary. Many photos, maps, and suggested road tour itineraries.

Stride, G.T. and D. Ifeka. Peoples and Empires of West Africa. West Africa in History 1000-1800. Thomas Nelson and Sons, Ltd.: London, 1971. Paperback. One of the best books on precolonial African history. Excellent maps and detailed discussions on the various empires and state in West Africa including Ghana, Mali, Songhai, Kanem-Bornu, Hausa, Benin and Ashanti.

Unger, Sanford J. Anger. Simon & Schuster: New York, 1985. Discusses the complexity, beauty, tragedy, importance and fascination of the whole of Africa. It is a journey through virtually all the African nations and their bursting cities. He traces the emergence of the second largest continent from its post-colonial era. Includes section on Togo.


Africa Report. Monthly of the African-American Institute. Excellent coverage of events and outstanding personalities. Book reviews. Cultural, political, economic, and sociological subjects examined with careful historical perspective. Exchange visitors and special projects reported regularly.

Foreign Affairs. Serious discussions by scholars, administrators, and African politicians, plus a bibliography.

Jeune Afrique. French-language weekly that covers African news and current events. Published in Paris.

National Geographic. West, Central, and sub-Saharan Africa at their most photogenic, with usually accurate observations in the text.

Local Holidays Last Updated: 7/17/2003 12:35 AM

The Embassy generally observes all U.S. and Togolese holidays. Shops are closed on local holidays and only the most essential work is done. The following are Togolese holidays:

New Year Jan. 1 Togo National Liberation Day Jan.13 Tabaski TBD (variable date) Ramadan TBD (variable date) Easter (variable date) Independence Day Apr. 27 Labor Day May 1 Ascension Thursday May (variable date) Pentecost Day May (variable date) Feast of Assumption Aug. 15 All Saints Day Nov. 1 Christmas Dec. 25

Adapted from material published by the U.S. Department of State. While some of the information is specific to U.S. missions abroad, the post report provides a good overview of general living conditions in the host country for diplomats from all nations.
Share |