25
MenuWallOpinions
Articles

Oh No! They Are Superstitious As Well

Sun, 31 Mar 2013 Source: Baidoo, Philip Kobina

What will compel a mother who has carried her precious daughter for nine months; then go through the indescribable experience of labour pains to bring her into the world, besides the real job of feeding, caring and dealing with all the emotional trauma of nurturing, and having gone through all that thankless job only to hand her over to some illiterate octogenarian to abuse, and use her as a de facto slave under a system called Trokosi? If you are still struggling let me help you out of your misery; it is superstition. We all know that such a system of abuse still happens in our 21st century Ghana due to lack of knowledge. The victims of this abominable practice, who succumb to their fears and ignorance, are illiterate, poor and destitute, and the beneficiaries do not fare any better. There are still enclaves in our society whose cultural practices are so far behind it will even cause a believer in Trokosi to raise an eye brow.

I am inflicting this load of rubbish, but sad medieval twaddle on you, because of the recent brouhaha about the government organising 200 pastors to go on pilgrimage to Jerusalem to pray for the country and specifically pray for the president. When the news broke I took it with a pinch of salt. Then the story took an orbit of its own. A whole minister had to weigh in to straighten up the records. Even then I didn’t think it was worthwhile writing about it. Then the President made a mess of himself by trying to get the genie back into the bottle, which a contributor on this website caricaturised his effort with a withering sarcasm whether he was a travelling agent.

To say that I was shocked when the President had to make time to address such a trifling issue is an understatement. To rationalise the fact that in the face of the crippling utility problems engulfing the country the President and his cabinet will allocate time to discuss such a trivial indulgence that will bring no mileage to the nation is beyond comprehension. Oh! I forgot; they said the trip is for the pastors to pray for the country and the President. Does anybody believe that? No, I doubt it. This is a smoke screen to create a diversion. Why will any modern leader conceive such an idea? Is Ghana a theocracy or a democracy? Which part of the constitution stipulates such a ridiculous superfluous expenditure to the national purse? I am sorry; they said it is private sponsors. Now, let me play the devil’s advocate. What about the Moslems, should they also not be sponsored to Mecca to pray for the nation. What about the Traditional worshipers, the Buddhist, the Hari Krishna, the adherent of Anton LaVey and what have you? After all, freedom of worship is enshrined in our constitution, and it guarantees equal rights under the law, isn’t it? This is absolute bonkers. Were they experiencing a short circuit in their thinking processes when they issued that letter? Was there no voice of sanity on the cabinet table to point out the crassness of such an idea? What sorts of people are ruling this country?

Politics is a game, and it is a very dirty one. Those with thin skin dare not venture. The last election was without doubt very corrosive, which the cadaver is still under the pathologist scalpel. It embroiled quite a few members of the ecclesiastical order, though some were pushed into the ring, others were actually spoiled for a fight, and did not have enough of it judging with the benefit of hindsight. One thing that pastors who put their heads over the parapet will have to know is that, whenever you get into the ring no matter how skilful you are you will be bruised, and I am certain the smart ones among them know that. So my question is what is haunting the NDC operatives? What are they afraid of? Does it matter if the pastors were told that they are crooks, cheats, brigands and ignorant liars who covert other peoples wives, because that is how majority of them are anyway who invariably needs to be flushed out. Is it because someone called Owusu-Bempah has prophesised that the President is going to die? Now, are they taking cue from the fact that he claimed he prophesised the death of the late President Mills? If that is the case then you have been played like a banjo. Anybody who is reckless and a gambler could have predicted the death of the president based on the deterioration of his physical appearance over the period leading to his demise. Now, for anyone to use that as a clutch and for our leaders to also fall for it is very sad, but shameful to the international image of all Ghanaians.

I thought we were voting into power a new generation of thinkers; not knowing the same non proactive, inside the box, chew and pour myopic thinkers, and the worse of all superstitious believers. How can a whole president who obtained his degree from our prestigious Ivory Tower – Legon, behave like a wimp in the face of wishful piffle? Currently, this is what I will tell the President. If wishes were horses beggars will ride. This is the wish of Owusu Bempah; and if he wants to force the hand of God, then he’s got to solicit the help of .38 calibre. Don’t be a poodle and kowtow to the desires of some insignificant ecclesiastical clown who plays on the fears of the people.

And this goes for him and his ministers. Manna does not fall from heaven anymore if that is what prayer does. It did happen briefly more than 3500 years ago. Through extraordinary feet of divine engineering the Jews were shepherded through the wilderness with a pillar of cloud by day to shield them from the scorching desert Sun, and a pillar of fire by night to augment the moon, and perhaps mimic a tinsel town effect to sway their minds from any figment of nostalgia. And the icing on the cake was the Manna that littered their encampment, but all that ceased when they entered the Promised Land and it has never been replicated anywhere again. If we are waiting for Manna to fall again we will be waiting till Thy Kingdom Come and we will die poor and destitute.

If prayer is what transforms or develops a people Ghana would have been the most advanced country in the world. God’s universe is governed by principles. When you discover those principles it doesn’t matter whether you are a scoundrel or holy man it will work for you. No amount of prayers, even on the hills of Calvary, a rare piece of real estate made more precious than gold, can transform the fortunes of Ghana when politicians cream off the funds that contractors will need to build a road that should last for 15 years only to deteriorate within 5 years. No amount of prayer can make an ignorant poor man rich, save a jackpot on the national lottery, if he does not apply the right principles.

The bible states in unequivocal terms that my people perish for lack of knowledge. I know that some of that ignorant bunch will argue that it relates to the knowledge of God. But the knowledge of God also encompasses all his universal principles is my rebuttal. Francis Bacon rendered the foregone in the language of simplicity that knowledge is power. Knowledge is what transforms. Knowledge is what builds. Knowledge is what lifts people out of poverty and not a trip to Jerusalem that will only fulfil other people’s individual aspirations.

Mr President your next endorsement will not come from what pastors tell their congregants, but the way you manage the economy. And we are watching, and keeping our fingers crossed. We will not be fooled next time.

Philip Kobina Baidoo Jnr. London baidoo_philip@yahoo.co.uk

Columnist: Baidoo, Philip Kobina