A Tribute To Komla Dumor

Komla Dumor BBC Small

Sun, 19 Jan 2014 Source: Kofi Thompson

It is a measure of the high esteem in which he was held in his native Ghana, that so many ordinary people were stunned to hear Komla Afeke Dumor had died suddenly, in his London home - and were saddened by the unwelcome news. Many Ghanaians felt a sense of pride that he anchored the BBC World Service's flagship African programmes.

Komla Dumor's unalloyed patriotism, contrasted sharply with the mean-spirited partisanship of the many Lilliputians, who tried to fill his gigantic shoes, after he left Joy FM for the BBC - as was his quiet self-confidence a world away from their tiresome and loquacious self-importance (not to mention their irritating pretentiousness).

One of the few Ghanaian journalists of his generation that I respected, I admired him for his professionalism, and wrote a number of articles to congratulate him, for some of the award-winning work he did whiles at Joy FM. Indeed, I often thought of him as ministerial material - and hoped that one day he would be a member of a Ghanaian government made up of honest technocrats who would put the national interest ahead of party advantage and personal ambition.

Having reached the pinnacle of his career, by joining the BBC World Service, little did one know that he would streak across the firmament brightly and briefly like a shooting star, and disappear for good, so early in his life. At this tragic moment, our thoughts are with his wife and children in London - and his extended family clan in Ghana. Komla Dumor, who opened doors for many in African journalism, will be sorely missed throughout the continent. Komla, dua eni amanehunu - and may your soul rest in peace.

Columnist: Kofi Thompson
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