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The Ghanaian upbringing, their hospitality, tradition have naturally made them too submissive

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Sun, 20 Jun 2021 Source: Rockson Adofo

What a case of hard talk this article is. It has come the time to tell the Ghanaian the naked painful truth to their face. It hurts, to tell the truth, but in the end it brings comfort. The Ghanaian must know themselves; who they are and how they are viewed by others.

The Ghanaian is brought up from their infancy to respect their elders. Even when the elder is in the wrong, you still have to pay them respect, accepting that it is the child who is rather in the wrong. Being overly respectful and kowtowing to whoever is older than you, not talking back to the elders, has been the standard upbringing of the Ghanaian.

Stringent adherence to the tenets of the Ghanaian upbringing makes one be acknowledged as respectful, obedient and good mannered. Unfortunately, some elders or older people have found a way to abuse the youth. While craftily wronging the youth, voraciously and selfishly availing themselves of what belongs to the entire citizenry to the detriment of the populace and the nation, they still expect the youth to pay them obeisance. They want to be applauded for whatever they do, as illegal and oftentimes irrational such their actions may be. In the name of the proper Ghanaian upbringing, one has to be submissive at all time, even when your balls are being deliberately squeezed very hard in the hope of exciting a ouch negative response from you in order to accuse you of being uncouth.

When you stand tall to be counted, defending yourself from abuse by an elderly person, you are said not to have been trained in the proper upbringing manners of the Ghanaian but to have been reared like a sheep. For the fear of being tagged as ill-mannered, one has to keep quiet or laugh even when their balls are being smashed.

The Ghanaian is very proud of their hospitality. They love strangers but not themselves. They will go the extra mile to render a stranger unqualified service. They will always be on the side of a stranger to prove to them that the Ghanaian is good, even when the stranger is wronging his fellow Ghanaian. This has often led to the strangers they help looking down on them as little minds. For the higher level that the Ghanaian has taken their hospitality towards strangers, even their next-door neighbour, the Nigerians, think they are two inches taller than the Ghanaian. They feel they are more important than the Ghanaian in every aspect of life. They are able to come to Ghana to make their own rules, mark their own territory and aggressively defend them while the Ghanaian still dotes on them, seeing them as indeed very intelligent and superior.

The audacity with which these foreigners, especially the Chinese, do what they want when they like, while the Ghanaian looks on like a fool without sense, all in the name of exhibition of the African or Ghanaian hospitality towards strangers, makes me wonder if the Ghanaian is not after all a subhuman. Why does the Ghanaian knowingly allow a foreigner to take his leniency for a weakness and treat him as such?

When the Ghanaian is taken for a big time fool by a stranger, he thinks to be very hospitable as is required of him. Let a foreigner grease the palm of a Ghanaian with a few Cedi notes, the Ghanaian will be forever ready to do whatever is requested of him/her by the foreigner. Is this not similar to the joke we used to crack when making fun of someone deemed less intelligent, when we say, “3kwasia ano retwea nsuo a, wose 3renum tea”, to wit, “When a fool is drooling, he thinks to be preparing tea”? Oh, the Ghanaian!

The strict adherence to tradition where we have come to overly venerate our traditional chiefs. No matter how a chief behaves, responsibly or irresponsibly, his subjects must prostrate to him. When a chief is offending you, you as the victim, must still plead for leniency, as though you are the one wronging the chief. By this tradition, many a Ghanaian chief or traditional overlord has become a crook. They have devised abusive methods to suppress the people, rob them in broad daylight and threaten to kill them should one dare raise a voice against them. If it were not so, how could the Asante overlord, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, usurp the powers of Kumawu, impose a royal of his choice on Kumawuman as paramount chief and arrange the police to intimidate those challenging his authority over Kumawuman?

When someone like Rockson Adofo, the proud fearless son of Kumawu/Asiampa, challenges him based on facts, conventions and evidence, he is seen not only by Otumfuo Osei Tutu II but also, his ignorant sub-chiefs and sycophantic supporters, as an enemy only worth eliminating. Nonsense! When did telling the truth and defending your rights make you an enemy only good to be murdered?

In the name of tradition, a chief can sell the same piece of land or plot to as many as three people, thus buyers. He will pocket the money. A fight will ensue between the many buyers as to who actually has the title of ownership to the plot. The chief will be left untouched to enjoy his illegally acquired money in peace while the innocent, but duped buyers, battle the case out on the ground and at the court.

The Ghanaian recommended upbringing, hospitality and inviolable observance of tradition even in the face of abuse, must be challenged and altered or else, the Ghanaian will forever be taken for a fool wherever they are or go.

Columnist: Rockson Adofo