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Opinions Mon, 26 Nov 2007

Letter from the president: People dragged me out

Countrymen and women, loyalists and opponents as you may have heard, death came smashing (literally!) into my car a few days ago. He came in the form of a drunk, ex-pal of mine, who whiles driving a black Mercedes Benz, ignored the usual “the president is coming so step aside” protocol and rammed into my special car (of all the vehicles in the 10-car convoy). I should have died on that day. But “God moves in a mysterious way” is one of my favourite hymns and so I am very sure that he spared my life for very good reasons. Firstly, to continue with my good works (of which there are plenty) and secondly, to correct all the wrongs I’ve done (of which there are a legacy soiling few). I’ve promised the Man up there that I’m going to do my best.

Let me say that I’ve been overwhelmed by the outpouring of sympathy and goodwill following that freak accident. I’m glad that you still love your president (even though many say I’m fond of increasing petroleum prices and yet many others accuse me of turning a blind eye to ‘waa waa’ ‘chop chop’). I’ve heard many of you say that the accident was a conspiracy to eliminate me. The security people do not think so. But then, what do they know? If they had done their job well, the accident shouldn’t have happened in the first place.

I’m very sure that someone wanted me dead on that day. Why? First, if what happened to me was a mere accident, the drunk’s car should have smashed into some other vehicle in the convoy – not mine. I can’t explain it but that’s how I feel. Secondly, when the accident happened, most of the guys in my security detail were nowhere to be found. I was helped out of the mangled car by a bunch of smelly and tattered ‘atadwe’ and ‘pure water’ sellers who were ably assisted by a group of cars washers and Zoomlion cleaners. If there was no conspiracy, where were the security guys when the accident happened? Believe you me; these guys are always around – even when I don’t need them. So where were they when I needed them most?

The big question, though, is who wants me dead? It’s hard to tell. But my initial thinking was that Jerry Boom was behind it all. When those roadside hawkers and cleaners helped me out of the car and I was holding my forehead, screaming “me wuo, me wuo”, I thought he had finally gotten me cornered and he might be making one of his ‘nationwide broadcasts’ (the type which usually follows his coups). That’s why immediately I was rescued I asked to be sent immediately to the Castle and not to the hospital. I love this job, you know.

When we got to the Castle all my worst fears were dispelled. It was at that moment that the adrenaline wore off and I started feeling the aches and pains associated with an accident. And gosh, did it hurt? The car rolled over at least five times before smashing into someone else’s car and landing on a pavement. Just imagine that. I was really in pain.

My ‘jonku’ hurt like never before. When we called in the doctors to examine me they miraculously told me that I didn’t suffer even a bruise. So after they had applied ‘Olla’ balm to a few vantage points (even in the areas immediately before the ‘langalanga’) I took a seat and decided to reflect a bit on the awful start to my day. It was then that I realised that Jerry Boom couldn’t have been the person behind this accident. Trust me, if there is anything Jerry Boom can’t get wrong, it is the art of deposing rulers. He doesn’t know how to govern well, but he sure knows how to get himself into government by force. Correct me if I’m wrong: but isn’t he the only man in the history of mankind to have staged three successful coups in the same country? He used the first to announce his presence, the second was successful and he used that to rule briefly. As for the third, he succeeded even though he gave more than adequate advance notice. What a coup maker he is?

As I sat on the Black Star stool, caressing the traditional designs on its armrest, I decided that Jerry Boom couldn’t have been behind the accident. This was one hell of a lousy coup attempt and Jerry Boom couldn’t have had a hand in it. I think that at long last, I can rest easy. The man hasn’t got any interest in kicking me out. This realisation was the first bright spot on my day. I smiled to myself and decided to go on with my day. First on the agenda was a meeting with a bunch of chiefs who had come to the Castle with no specific agenda but to just waste a bit of my time (of which, I have a lot to squander). It was after this meeting that I decided to make my own nationwide broadcast and make it known to the nation that I was alright. “Thank God I’m in one piece,” I said in a brief statement to the journalists.

The question as to who might have made that attempt on my life still remains unanswered. But I think it was an inside job. Our elders like to say that “the insect which will bite you is most probably hidden in your cloth”. I am tempted to believe that the vermin who wants me dead is one of the numerous presidential aspirants; most probably one of those who is very unhappy with by reported endorsement of the candidature of Alan Cash. But I’d leave it here (for now) and wait on the Good Lord to reveal who it is to me. I pray that he does so before December 22 – then I’d know whose campaign to sabotage before we go to congress.

For now, though, countrymen and women I remain thankful that I am still breathing and walking. Since the accident, I wake up every day and after giving Mama Tess a ‘good morning’ kiss, I sit at the edge of my bed and reflect on why I’m alive as well as how I could prevent such an incident from occurring again.

Countrymen and women, I’ve decided that the time has come for me to stop racing around the country like an African Lewis Hamilton. In other words, the speed with which my convoy travels is too much. I cannot continue to tell citizens to take it easy on the road whiles I allow myself to by driven around like I was in a Formula 1 race. It’s hard to ask these security men to adopt a new strategy but I am trying my best to convince them that it is in our interest to slow down a bit. After all, as president people make way for me to pass by and I can jump traffic lights at will. So why the rush? Why the rush when we are merely moving from Airport to the Castle (a distance of just about three miles)? We really need to slow down. This is not the first time my convoy has been involved in an accident. People have been killed by this convoy. And with each accident, death seems to come closer to me. This was the closest and I pray to God that it doesn’t happen again. And the first step towards preventing a recurrence is to slow the bloody convoy down.

Secondly, I think it’s imperative for the security guys to get their act together around me. As far as I know, the intersection from where the drunken idiot appeared should have been blocked by an outrider. If there had been an outrider at that point, he would have been dead by now and I wouldn’t be complaining about an accident. That’s his job – to get himself killed so that I may leave. The outriders obviously didn’t do their job well and I have ordered a thorough investigation and I’m hoping that some heads roll soon.

Thirdly, I am appalled (to say the least) that when the accident happened I was helped out of the car by bystanders and not my so-called body guards. Where the heck were they? Any of those ‘atadwe’ milk sellers could have been an assassin. The fact that the bodyguards were nowhere to be found is a by-product of the needless speed the convoy races around. They were in a different car, racing so fast ahead of me that whiles my car was rolling on the ground they were still speeding away. They were almost two kilometres away from the accident spot when they realised that there was something amiss – my car wasn’t following them anymore. This should never happen again.

To make matters worse, it was only after the accident that we realised that we’ve been racing around like crazy without a doctor in the convoy for emergencies like this. This must be rectified immediately.

Countrymen and women let me wrap up by saying ‘sorry’ for the anxiety I caused you. I am grateful though for the outpouring of support and goodwill. I can’t thank you enough for your prayers. I’ve heard some of you complain that after the accident, my security detail appears to have adopted some measures, which inconveniences you a lot. The complaint is that sometimes a good thirty minute before I set off, all roads are blocked – leaving you in traffic for so long. Sometimes, they order the roads blocked (manned by gun-totting soldiers) even when I’m still looking for a ‘pieto’ to wear. I am sorry. These security people are fond of knee jerk reactions and I hope that in due course they will come to their senses and things will normalise again.

Finally, let me say that I am not in the least amused by the fact that some presidential aspirants have been speeding around in convoys. As a result, some of these convoys have been involved in accidents (which claimed lives). I am not on talking terms with most of them (lest, I’m reported to be endorsing anyone) so someone should tell them that they are not presidents yet and it is illegal for them to be speeding. Even I, the president, am thinking about reducing my speed. A word to the wise is heeded before calamity strikes!

Countrymen and women, loyalists and opponents as you may have heard, death came smashing (literally!) into my car a few days ago. He came in the form of a drunk, ex-pal of mine, who whiles driving a black Mercedes Benz, ignored the usual “the president is coming so step aside” protocol and rammed into my special car (of all the vehicles in the 10-car convoy). I should have died on that day. But “God moves in a mysterious way” is one of my favourite hymns and so I am very sure that he spared my life for very good reasons. Firstly, to continue with my good works (of which there are plenty) and secondly, to correct all the wrongs I’ve done (of which there are a legacy soiling few). I’ve promised the Man up there that I’m going to do my best.

Let me say that I’ve been overwhelmed by the outpouring of sympathy and goodwill following that freak accident. I’m glad that you still love your president (even though many say I’m fond of increasing petroleum prices and yet many others accuse me of turning a blind eye to ‘waa waa’ ‘chop chop’). I’ve heard many of you say that the accident was a conspiracy to eliminate me. The security people do not think so. But then, what do they know? If they had done their job well, the accident shouldn’t have happened in the first place.

I’m very sure that someone wanted me dead on that day. Why? First, if what happened to me was a mere accident, the drunk’s car should have smashed into some other vehicle in the convoy – not mine. I can’t explain it but that’s how I feel. Secondly, when the accident happened, most of the guys in my security detail were nowhere to be found. I was helped out of the mangled car by a bunch of smelly and tattered ‘atadwe’ and ‘pure water’ sellers who were ably assisted by a group of cars washers and Zoomlion cleaners. If there was no conspiracy, where were the security guys when the accident happened? Believe you me; these guys are always around – even when I don’t need them. So where were they when I needed them most?

The big question, though, is who wants me dead? It’s hard to tell. But my initial thinking was that Jerry Boom was behind it all. When those roadside hawkers and cleaners helped me out of the car and I was holding my forehead, screaming “me wuo, me wuo”, I thought he had finally gotten me cornered and he might be making one of his ‘nationwide broadcasts’ (the type which usually follows his coups). That’s why immediately I was rescued I asked to be sent immediately to the Castle and not to the hospital. I love this job, you know.

When we got to the Castle all my worst fears were dispelled. It was at that moment that the adrenaline wore off and I started feeling the aches and pains associated with an accident. And gosh, did it hurt? The car rolled over at least five times before smashing into someone else’s car and landing on a pavement. Just imagine that. I was really in pain.

My ‘jonku’ hurt like never before. When we called in the doctors to examine me they miraculously told me that I didn’t suffer even a bruise. So after they had applied ‘Olla’ balm to a few vantage points (even in the areas immediately before the ‘langalanga’) I took a seat and decided to reflect a bit on the awful start to my day. It was then that I realised that Jerry Boom couldn’t have been the person behind this accident. Trust me, if there is anything Jerry Boom can’t get wrong, it is the art of deposing rulers. He doesn’t know how to govern well, but he sure knows how to get himself into government by force. Correct me if I’m wrong: but isn’t he the only man in the history of mankind to have staged three successful coups in the same country? He used the first to announce his presence, the second was successful and he used that to rule briefly. As for the third, he succeeded even though he gave more than adequate advance notice. What a coup maker he is?

As I sat on the Black Star stool, caressing the traditional designs on its armrest, I decided that Jerry Boom couldn’t have been behind the accident. This was one hell of a lousy coup attempt and Jerry Boom couldn’t have had a hand in it. I think that at long last, I can rest easy. The man hasn’t got any interest in kicking me out. This realisation was the first bright spot on my day. I smiled to myself and decided to go on with my day. First on the agenda was a meeting with a bunch of chiefs who had come to the Castle with no specific agenda but to just waste a bit of my time (of which, I have a lot to squander). It was after this meeting that I decided to make my own nationwide broadcast and make it known to the nation that I was alright. “Thank God I’m in one piece,” I said in a brief statement to the journalists.

The question as to who might have made that attempt on my life still remains unanswered. But I think it was an inside job. Our elders like to say that “the insect which will bite you is most probably hidden in your cloth”. I am tempted to believe that the vermin who wants me dead is one of the numerous presidential aspirants; most probably one of those who is very unhappy with by reported endorsement of the candidature of Alan Cash. But I’d leave it here (for now) and wait on the Good Lord to reveal who it is to me. I pray that he does so before December 22 – then I’d know whose campaign to sabotage before we go to congress.

For now, though, countrymen and women I remain thankful that I am still breathing and walking. Since the accident, I wake up every day and after giving Mama Tess a ‘good morning’ kiss, I sit at the edge of my bed and reflect on why I’m alive as well as how I could prevent such an incident from occurring again.

Countrymen and women, I’ve decided that the time has come for me to stop racing around the country like an African Lewis Hamilton. In other words, the speed with which my convoy travels is too much. I cannot continue to tell citizens to take it easy on the road whiles I allow myself to by driven around like I was in a Formula 1 race. It’s hard to ask these security men to adopt a new strategy but I am trying my best to convince them that it is in our interest to slow down a bit. After all, as president people make way for me to pass by and I can jump traffic lights at will. So why the rush? Why the rush when we are merely moving from Airport to the Castle (a distance of just about three miles)? We really need to slow down. This is not the first time my convoy has been involved in an accident. People have been killed by this convoy. And with each accident, death seems to come closer to me. This was the closest and I pray to God that it doesn’t happen again. And the first step towards preventing a recurrence is to slow the bloody convoy down.

Secondly, I think it’s imperative for the security guys to get their act together around me. As far as I know, the intersection from where the drunken idiot appeared should have been blocked by an outrider. If there had been an outrider at that point, he would have been dead by now and I wouldn’t be complaining about an accident. That’s his job – to get himself killed so that I may leave. The outriders obviously didn’t do their job well and I have ordered a thorough investigation and I’m hoping that some heads roll soon.

Thirdly, I am appalled (to say the least) that when the accident happened I was helped out of the car by bystanders and not my so-called body guards. Where the heck were they? Any of those ‘atadwe’ milk sellers could have been an assassin. The fact that the bodyguards were nowhere to be found is a by-product of the needless speed the convoy races around. They were in a different car, racing so fast ahead of me that whiles my car was rolling on the ground they were still speeding away. They were almost two kilometres away from the accident spot when they realised that there was something amiss – my car wasn’t following them anymore. This should never happen again.

To make matters worse, it was only after the accident that we realised that we’ve been racing around like crazy without a doctor in the convoy for emergencies like this. This must be rectified immediately.

Countrymen and women let me wrap up by saying ‘sorry’ for the anxiety I caused you. I am grateful though for the outpouring of support and goodwill. I can’t thank you enough for your prayers. I’ve heard some of you complain that after the accident, my security detail appears to have adopted some measures, which inconveniences you a lot. The complaint is that sometimes a good thirty minute before I set off, all roads are blocked – leaving you in traffic for so long. Sometimes, they order the roads blocked (manned by gun-totting soldiers) even when I’m still looking for a ‘pieto’ to wear. I am sorry. These security people are fond of knee jerk reactions and I hope that in due course they will come to their senses and things will normalise again.

Finally, let me say that I am not in the least amused by the fact that some presidential aspirants have been speeding around in convoys. As a result, some of these convoys have been involved in accidents (which claimed lives). I am not on talking terms with most of them (lest, I’m reported to be endorsing anyone) so someone should tell them that they are not presidents yet and it is illegal for them to be speeding. Even I, the president, am thinking about reducing my speed. A word to the wise is heeded before calamity strikes!

Lucky to be alive,
J. A. Fukuor
(fukuor@gmail.com)

Columnist: Daily Dispatch