Opinions Thu, 14 Dec 2017

Brother Kennedy Agyepong is damned right; 'Ghana is sick'

he Akans have thought-provoking saying closely translated in English that perchance a frog emerges from the stream and informs the land dwellers about the death of the crocodile under the water, it is almost impossible to doubt the credibility of the news. In our situation, though, many of us already know the crocodile is long dead or it’s on life support at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) somewhere in Ghanaian political, economic, and socio-cultural milieus. We just need confirmation from the insiders.

At any rate, here is the catch, since considerable number of us is “land dwellers” or lives abroad, nothing that we write or say will make many of our brothers and sisters in Ghana sit up; and have dispassionate reflections on the true state of the moral decay entrenched in the country. So, when the MP for Assin Central, Brother Kennedy Agyepong, correctly stated on the ADOM TV recently that “Ghana” as societal unit “is sick,” the NPP’s nonsense lawmaker was acting as the proverbial messenger the frog out of the water.

More significant, not only was the MP bearing the cold truthful news that the “crocodile is dead” and its putrefying effects all over the place, but also the firebrand legislator’s candid assertion gave many of us who strongly share similar sentiments of the nation’s sickness a protective cover to express ourselves openly, too. The cover cushions us against frivolous claim that Ghanaians in diaspora don’t know much about their homeland they have left behind to offer any constructive critique regarding its prevailing political, economic, and socio-cultural contours.

The MP from Assin Central is damned right, Ghana is gravely sick and it is getting worse every day. Clearly, someone needs to be bold and honest enough to tell it like it is. It doesn’t matter where one resides, the world of the Internet/social media has just about eliminated far distances among international borders. What happens in one part of the world instantly becomes known/old news in the other far corners of the world.

Yes, many of us live far away from Ghana, but we know and strongly agree with Mr. Kennedy Agyepong that the Ghanaian society is sick like a dog, as the Americans love to say. Most Ghanaians are the people who eat their bread voraciously and the same time expect to have it back. They complain constantly about not having free education. Now, here comes the introduction of the free SHS under the aegis of Nana Akufo-Addo’s administration, and what many of us are witnessing is deliberate sabotage of the Free SHS initiative. The country is sick, indeed.

It’s incredibly depressing, considering the high-level of average Ghanaian’s self-destructive attitude toward everything Ghana. Many Ghanaians profess their undying love for the country, yet they corruptibly suck the nation to its bare bones. It is common knowledge that besides the police force and the nation’s ports of entry, Ghana education service, including the secondary schools, are the legendary Petri dishes for the incubation of public corruption rooted in ghost names.

Critics are quick to point out inadequate funds and lack of other logistical support for, including how “unsustainable” the newly implemented Free SHS would be. But, they quickly forget to talk about the severe impact of the systemic corruption perpetuated by those tasked to run our public education. The headmasters, bursars, matrons, and other officials of the public educational institutions are mismanaging and stealing daily from their schools and the same time busy shifting the entire blame on the government of the day.

The recent news about a senior matron caught or suspected of stealing large food supplies intended for students at GHANASS in Koforidua, was not only shamefully nauseating but also the behavior spoke ominously to the overall unethical tendencies prevalent within the social fabric of the Ghanaian society. The question is how many high schools’ head matrons like the one at GHANASS does the country have?

Evidently there are countless crook matrons and headmasters with no iota of moral shame yet claim every day to be God-fearing Christians and good Muslims in the position of public responsibility. Many Ghanaians fill up church pews almost each day, speaking in perceived “spiritual tongues” and right after their religious services they find crooked ways to demean the values on which the only country/Ghana they have, stands.

For a sizable group of us, when the MP from Assin Central Mr. Agyepong rightly articulated that “Ghana is sick,” we understood exactly where he was heading with that lamentation. In other words, a country that has many of its public officials entangled in the occultism of corruption; where majority of its citizens do not have respect for its environment because of greed and selfishness; or, in a society where people can urinate or “answer nature’s call” in the street corners and other open places, where these human wastes possibly run into the water supply; certainly, that nation is sick.

In short, when people intentionally throw or dump garbage into gutters blocking them such that whenever there is heavy downpour of rain it often causes flooding in the cities and towns sewerage system with its attendant loss of lives and properties; also, where there are no enforceable or absence of public decency laws to contain the excesses of the latter-day illiterates/semi-literates “celebrities” running amok at public events almost naked in the vague name of entertainment; or, a country where people never die naturally unless the so-called juju or witchcraft is behind it, that society is definitely sick. These are some of the reasons the honorable MP Mr. Ken Agyepong is damned right that “Ghana is sick!”

Bernard Asubonteng is United States-based writer; send your comments to: detrio03@aol.com
Columnist: Bernard Asubonteng