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Thank God for witches!

Sun, 10 Apr 2016 Source: Kobina Ansah

Do I love witches? Maybe I do. Maybe we all do. I always remember to thank God for their existence. After all, we subtly celebrate them in our society. We inadvertently drag them into every happening!

I once wrote on how Kumawood movies reflected our thoughts as a people. I succinctly touched on how such movies barely end without witches, voodoo or juju having their way in the story. In other words, most of their stories could barely be told without making mention of a witch somewhere being the cause of a character’s challenges. And… that is the typical Ghana!

Like it or not, witches have come to stay in our society. Though I am yet to see one, we all are accustomed to them. We somewhat believe they are the reason(s) we are stuck in our trails as a people.

As long as there are witches we all can, at least, act irresponsibly. After all, the witches are to blame! Maybe… we are overly spiritual; more ‘spiri-chua’ (in a snake-turning bishop’s voice) than even God! We effortlessly give our problems a touch of mysticism. After all, who can see what happens in the ‘spiri-chua’!?

Some of our churches are filled with bitter people (surprisingly often young women) praying some ‘over-the-bar’ prayers because of a supposed witch sitting on their destiny. Our nation, on the other hand, is battling a queue of challenges which supposedly are caused by witches. Oh thou witches, can you let us be!?

I think our witches may not be guilty after all. Besides, those same or similar witches live outside Africa, too. And… we don’t seem to see a significant role they play there. Maybe… they hate us that much. Maybe African witches are just workaholics. They don’t joke with their work. Just maybe.

Was I surprised the Accra mayor earlier this week suggested that we sought ‘spiritual solutions’ to the rampant fire outbreaks at Circle after Vienna City caught fire? No. I am not. I am not the least surprised. He’s expressed the thoughts of a typical African!

Take a stroll down memory lane. Almost every disaster that befell us was blamed on one witch or the other; May 9th Stadium disaster, June 3rd, Kintampo accident, name them. In this part of our world, no disaster happens either naturally or by our own actions/inactions. At all times, our workaholic witches are at work. Chai!

Do I believe in witches? Maybe yes. Maybe no. Maybe the kind of witches I believe in are not as workaholic as the typical African ones.

We play too much as a people. We are quick to hurl blames at others for what we bring on ourselves. We are hasty to apportion blames on witches for the troubles we deservedly drown ourselves in. Poor witches!

In Africa today, everyone is taking advantage of witches. The supposed prophet is selling his ‘favor and protection oil’ at a whopping price to deliver us from their hands. We mess up our lives with our decisions and still go back to the same prophet who would prophetically diagnose the cause of such troubles as one witch somewhere.

In governance/politics (these two mean same in Africa!), the blame trick is not any different. We let all our guards down and cling onto some false hope. We literally live hoping hope would hope not to fail us. We live hoping certain happenings won’t occur because we are not prepared. When such hope fails, the witches are to blame. We choose to prioritize wrongly, leaving our nation to chance. If that chance fails, we have witches to blame!

We think others are responsible for our failures when indeed we are! If you can’t attribute your success to witches, why blame your failure on them!? We are the captains of our own lives; the captains of this nation. Whatever befalls us, whether success or failure, depends on our decisions; our actions and inactions.

We can’t expect to advance any further in development when we’re in haste to blame others for our woes. We can barely make any progress as a people when we are almost always thanking witches for making us supposedly do what we do. Yes!

Do you blame others for your woes, too? Do you think your choices are not to blame but some witches? Really!? Be responsible for your life. Maturity is taking responsibility of every outcome of your life… even your failures. You are the master brewer of your life. What you sow is exactly what you will reap. If you sow carelessness and pettiness, your harvest will be nothing far from failure! Let the witches be.

We need to think rightly as a people. When we begin to think as we should, everything around us would change; our lifestyle, taste of leadership, movies, among others.

Our thoughts reflect everything around us. If we think witches are to blame for every outcome of our lives, our leaders definitely won’t be accountable to us. After all, there would always be an excuse of a witch!

We would be corrupt… and still blame it on voodoo. We would mismanage our economy because little-mindedness… and still believe that some juju made us do so. Our cedi would depreciate… and we would still think some vertically-challenged beings called dwarves are the cause.

We can’t live any beyond our thoughts. We need to dream big and stop being petty. We need to be accountable for our lives (and our nation) and stop giving ‘spiri-chua’ excuses. I believe in Ghana. I believe there’s so much we can offer the world… aside witches. Haha. I believe that we can be spiritually-minded and still make headway in development… not allowing our spirituality to get in our way. Mind you, spirituality is not a synonym of laziness!

For now, try much as I can, I can’t cook my favorite jollof. I think I might just thank God for those witches who have rendered me incapable of doing so. Chai! Have a great weekend folks.

The writer is the Chief Scribe of Scribe Communications, a writing company in Accra. (www.scribecomltd.com)

Columnist: Kobina Ansah