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Eulogizing Patrick Darko-Missah the outgoing Director-General of Prisons.

DGP Patrick Darko Missah Patrick Darko-Missah

Fri, 13 Aug 2021 Source: Emmanuel Boateng Agyemfra

“As a leader, I am tough on myself and I raise the standard for everybody; however, I am very caring because I want people to excel at what they are doing so that they can aspire to be me in the future”- Indra Nooyi.

During the very early days of the Ejura Camp Prison, where I was part of the first eleven officers sent there to build, we had a message of the Director General’s visit to the infant prison facility, and deep inside me, I was elated and saw it as a never to be forgotten memory.

It was also going to be my first time seeing a DG or walking with one! When the man arrived in Ejura Nkwanta; instead of driving straight to the facility, he made a stop over at the farm, came down from the car, and asked for his wellington boots. He proceeded to sit where I sat with the inmates and had a friendly chat with us all.

After his tour in the farm, led by now Supt. Dickson Owusu Ameyaw, he came to the facility and had a durbar with officers. At the durbar, he sat with us on the bench and asked for roasted corn; I was like is this a joke or something but no, he meant it. He enjoyed the corn to our admiration when the meeting was ongoing.

Attitude

Wofa, “Uncle” as he's affectionately called, is a leader who by the quote above, opens his doors to all and sundry, listens, and works on them. I don’t know the history behind the alias, ‘Wofa’ but what I know, for every elderly person to be referred to as Wofa by all the people he has worked with means, he's a father figure and never stopped being one.

Mr. Darko-Missah gave me the true definition of Humility when he visited us at the Ejura Camp Prison! He wasn't too complex to approach and didn’t also see us, Junior officers as too small to talk to.

During the Ejura durbar, I tabled a request on the need for a Signboard, and his response got us all laughing. He said, “ahhh Agyemfra, but you're situated right by the road, so why the need for a signboard”, he then requested for another roasted corn.

Works

I know very well he has touched so many lives as he rose through the ranks from ASP to a Nobel DG. His days at the Sekondi Central Prison saw some sort of crisis but as the leader he is, he became the Christ to save the crisis that day. His name is still written in gold at the Sekondi Complex.

His rich background in Agric also played a major role in the service farms.

The plan to decongest our prison facilities sent him liaising with the Church of Pentecost and saw the building of the well-resourced Ejura Camp Prison with the same thing being done at Obuasi, Kpando, Damongo, and Nsawam.

Decoupling of the Agric Unit from the OPS was one of the hurdles a lot of officers have been expecting for so long to be removed. Thanks to visionary Wofa who saw the need for a Health Directorate and made it come to pass.

Y

ou will be remembered for making sure non-salary allowances were not paid on ‘table tops’ but through the banks.

I joined the noble service in 2016 and came to meet non-commissioned officers who had stayed on the Assistant Chief Officer rank for 11 years instead of 4 years. It was Wofa, who came to break the cycle and brought smiles to the faces of all these aggrieved officers.

Sir, you will be remembered for the smooth and innovative manner Officer Cadet Courses were done. This was done to appreciate long service, dexterity, and academic qualification.

I cannot close this eulogy chapter without mentioning the tremendous job done in increasing the staff strength of our noble service with over 6 recruitment and Cadet Courses. Great man, I give you a standing ovation.

Appreciation

He couldn’t have done all but at least his Midas touch on some aspects have been of benefit to officers. Some of us young officers appreciate his exemplary leadership and wish him well as he transits into civility with honor.

Wofa, I convey to you the warmest farewell I could give to a fantastic Director-General. I wish you all the success and happiness.

The writer is a Lance Corporal with the Manhyia Local Prison, Kumasi, and can be contacted on agyenfra43@gmail.com/0249542342.

Columnist: Emmanuel Boateng Agyemfra