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The President’s face mask

Thu, 23 Jul 2020 Source: Theodore Dzeble

“But every president’s state of health is an important national concern, especially in an election year. The opposition would always undertake to magnify the minutest abnormality in a president’s anatomy for the purpose of prosecuting political mischief. For this reason, the health secrets of a president is better guarded than the Nsawam Prison.”

For all those who feel they have a bone to pick with the official reasons advanced for the 14-day intensive isolation of the President, I say mind your own business ? “di wu fie asem!”

The Minister for Information who happens to be an old acquaintance of mine (although I am not sure he would remember me vividly now) has provided convincing reasons why the President had to isolate himself for 14 days.

I heard it from his own mouth, when he said that our Commander-in-Chief was exposed to a person who had the virus, and so as a matter of precaution, he had to self-isolate for the mandatory 14-day period in keeping with global standards of self-preservation. I thought this alibi was quite credible and almost convincing. But many doubting Thomases have since opposed this cogent explanation profusely, ascertaining without much proof, that the President might have indeed contracted the virus.

Don’t ask me what such a person of contamination was doing close to the President. Neither am I able to tell thee about the culprit’s gender, or even insinuate, by the smallest margin of success, the location in the House of Jubilee where this illegal transaction took place, nor am I able to hazard the time, whether by day or by night of this unhealthy transfer.

But let’s call spade a spade ? the President’s action deserves abundant applause. His self-quarantine has granted him some well-deserved rest, and fortified him for the action-packed pre-election hysteria of activities awaiting his leadership. And don’t forget that the President’s physical, mental, emotional and even spiritual happiness is a matter of paramount importance to every Ghanaian!

But every president’s state of health is an important national concern, especially in an election year. The opposition would always undertake to magnify the minutest abnormality in a president’s anatomy for the purpose of prosecuting political mischief. For this reason, the health secrets of a president is better guarded than the Nsawam prison.

I remember the famous Airport Declaration by former President Mills several years ago. (May his sweet soul rest in peace). He had just returned home after undergoing some medicals abroad. Thereupon, he was ambushed by the paparazzi at the Airport, and he had to provide presidential sound bites to a barrage of scrutable questions including concerns about the legitimacy of his health!

It was around 7 pm if my memory is to be trusted, and I was driving on the Nima Highway when a question about the state of his health caused my hair to stand on end. The questioner wanted to know if he was in good shape to continue his service to Ghana as president and whether he was in good shape to run for the coming elections on the ticket of the NDC.

He answered the difficult question with some bravado and enthusiasm the way any man who trusted in God would. He even validated his newly acquired strength by doing a little athleticism on the tarmac or somewhere in the perimeter of Kotoka to show his readiness to lead the NDC to victory! But listening to him on radio, there was no doubt all was not well with the good old professor, and that he needed some prolonged rest from all the acrimony and boiling waters of partisan politics. The writing was on the wall!

Thank God Nana’s aggravated cough is no more, but he must wear a face mask. No one has urged, petitioned, even pleaded with Ghanaians to wear a face mask more than the President, yet like Donald the Trump, he scarcely uses one himself. He has never used a face mask in any of the “Fellow Ghanaians” presentations he has made these past four or so months, yet he is the chief proponent of the theory of face-masking in this country.

Nevertheless, I believe my old friend, the Minister, when he says the President tested negative for Covid twice during his discretionary separation. Let those mongering information contradictory to the Press Secretary’s official parody provide ample justification for their mischief or hold their peace in perpetuity!

Columnist: Theodore Dzeble

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