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The Foment In Dagbon - Fire In Our House?

2005-01-19 15:28:27
This article has been read 1394 times.

First of all I would like to thank all the hundreds of fellow countrymen and women who responded to my previous effort regarding the wholly undeserved excoriation of the Fante as being responsible for the failure of Professor Atta Mills’ bid to win the Presidency (The Fante Vote – A Paradigm for The New Ghana?).
First of all I would like to thank all the hundreds of fellow countrymen and women who responded to my previous effort regarding the wholly undeserved excoriation of the Fante as being responsible for the failure of Professor Atta Mills’ bid to win the Presidency (The Fante Vote – A Paradigm for The New Ghana?). I am most gratified and encouraged by what everyone had to say, especially the young soldiers who felt compelled to anonymously write to indicate that under no circumstance would they aid or abet the “disaster makers”.

If this indeed is the prevailing espirit de corps within the ranks of the current generation of the Armed Forces, then we should as a people be very thankful. Time was when the professionalism of the Armed Forces of Ghana was the envy of Africa and indeed much of the developing world. It could be reasonably argued that the baleful consequences that have attended and followed in the wake of the events of February 24th, 1966 have not only been unkind to the image of the armed forces but that we the people of Ghana have paid an inordinately high price for the actions of the “disaster makers”. May we forever more be spared such odious pother. I hope and pray that our soldiers will come to value and abide the ancient Roman maxim of cedant arma togae – the subservience of the military to the civilian order. When this bedrock tenet of the late republic was overthrown, the glory that was Rome quickly faded into the mists of time and history.

Our mother, Ghana, has given us much that we ought to be grateful for. On the debit side of my own account, I note free education and free healthcare (especially in the tenuous early years of infancy when childhood mortality was an ever present threat) as some of the benefits purchased at considerable strain to her relatively meager purse. We ought not stand idly by when some of her children (misguided though they may be) would seek to add to her already considerable burdens.

We cannot all serve mother Ghana with our feet dusted by her red clay soil. It is perhaps regrettable but yet a present reality that our mother is at the moment not in the position to provide avenues for the aspirations of all her children. Inevitably some of us must leave home to make our way in the world, sometimes to the disadvantage of our mother. This is not the time to cast blame for the relatively slow pace of our economic development since independence. As a nation we have been buffeted and tossed about by ill-winds and fires (some of our own making) and yet we have come out of the crucible with our sense of self undiminished. The true test now is whether we will get up off the ground, dust ourselves off and proceed down the road fully persuaded and confident that we will achieve our destination; remembering all the while that even the tortoise eventually gets to where he is going. Therefore, it is at once imperative and incumbent upon those of us in the diaspora to help better the lives of our brothers and sisters who are back home in Ghana in any and all ways that we can. It is said that charity begins at home. In a larger sense we are all ebusuafo regardless of our ethnic pedigree or provenance.

It is in the light of the foregoing that I, like most Ghanaians, continue to be deeply troubled by the ongoing and seemingly intractable foment and disquiet in Dagbon. The genesis and the facts underlying this unhappy circumstance remain inchoate to most of us. Be that as it may, I appeal to all our governmental, civil, traditional and religious leaders to quickly circle the wagons and find a way to address this festering situation. I am not so naïve as to think that all in the world are our friends and wish us well. The continuous build up of destructive weaponry in the region ought to be of great concern to all of us. The situation is further amplified by the recent public utterances and intimations of WAR. Can we really sit idly by while this situation hurtles unchecked to the edge of the precipice? Without overstating the case or being unduly alarmist, the grass fire that threatens Dagbon today could eventually engulf all of our comfortable urban estates and rural homesteads if we continue to bury our collective heads in the sand and leave “those people to solve their own problem”. The fact, however, is that those people happen to be part of our exquisite and intricately wrought national quilt. Which of the yarns of our national kente cloth are we willing to unravel and dispense with? And would we really have a kente worthy of the name if we allow this to happen?

The events surrounding the killing of the Ya Na requires the attention of all of us for we will all surely reap the whirlwind that could be spawned if this grass fire is left unattended as we sit in self-congratulatory contemplation of our collective navel. Are we going to stand idly by while our home land becomes another in the long line of unhappy countries extant on the African continent? President Kufuor must bring all the considerable powers and goodwill of his office to bear on this matter without delay. I am aware of recent tentative efforts in certain quarters of our government to arrest the situation but it would appear that unless a coordinated national effort is marshaled to confront this issue, it could escape our hands.

To those in the political opposition, please resist the temptation to give yourselves over to enjoying a false and fleeting moment of political ‘schadenfreude’ at the expense of the victors in the recent election – “this is not our problem. Let Kufuor and the NPP clean up this mess”. That may be so but doesn’t this lame and feckless attitude beg the question? Don’t we all live together in this house we call Ghana? Like it or not our individual futures are yoked together. We need your contribution. Be part of the solution not part of the problem.

Please speak up or write to our leaders. A great conflagration requires but a single spark.

Thank you, ebusuafo, for lending me your ears (eyes?). Also shout outs and props to all the good people at Ghanaweb for providing this excellent forum.

God bless.

John Ekow Bedu Woode
St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A

Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of Dagbon Net

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