Posted: Wednesday 27th August 2014 at 12:00 pm

And Hon. Chooboi Wept!

I seldom have more than five hours’ sleep a day nowadays. But school being on vacation has afforded me the opportunity to make amends. I now take a nap in the morning after the Fajr (dawn) prayer.

I study till deep in the night for an upcoming ICM (UK) examination, so the morning nap is very important to me. As you already know, one cannot cheat nature.

I was having my usual morning nap last Friday when my ring tone, ‘Destiny’ by Buju Banton, started blaring on my phone. I ignored the call. I did not pick the call on the second ring either; but the persistence of the caller made it difficult for me to resist the desire to know who the caller was. Curiosity took the better part of me so I picked the call on the third ring.

I could not readily identify the voice of the caller. It was after a few seconds of introduction that I got to know it was one of my Form Two students. His question was as intriguing as it was interesting. He wanted to know if the tears ‘the minister’ shed at the previous day’s Commission of Enquiry proceedings were crocodile tears. “Which minister?” I asked with a puzzled mind.

He was surprised to learn that I was oblivious of the previous day’s happenings. “Sir, you of all people not aware that Hon. Chooboi wept at yesterday’s sitting?” he quizzed in a very shocking tone. The mention of ‘Hon. Chooboi’ drummed home the point.

I explained to him that my Octogenarian grandmother was suddenly taken ill that fateful day and I had to take her to the Amasaman Hospital, where I spent almost the whole day; hence my inability to monitor happenings in the media. As to Hon. Choboi’s tears being that of a crocodile, I advised him to wait patiently for the Commission’s report before making any conclusions.

Following the conversation with my student, I quickly requested for the tapes of the previous two day’s sitting from a friend, who readily obliged. It was indeed very revealing!

I don’t weep that easily. The last time I shed tears was some 24 months back, at a close friend’s funeral. But by the time I finished watching the tapes, my eyes were filled with tears. Unlike Hon. Chooboi, I did not have anyone to console or tell me not to be emotional. I did not only feel anger within me, but also felt a gathering storm filled with thunder. I just could not believe my ears were hearing right. The figures mentioned by Hon. Chooboi were simply unbelievable!

Take, for instance, the claim that a whopping over 1.9 billion old cowries were splashed on the presidential ball organised for the players. Much as I tried, I could not make sense of what the minister said. Did they slaughter 10 cows? And even if they did, which is highly unlikely considering the small number of people who attended the ball, the total expenditure cannot be up to one billion old cowries. Massa, the cowries big oo! Apologies to Sheikh I.C. Quaye, aka Agbenaaa.

As I write, I still cannot tell why Hon. Chooboi shed those tears. Some say he was simply emotional. But I ask; emotional for what? Was he emotional because he failed to keep the promise he made to me and my compatriots? Was he emotional because he felt he was innocent and was being lambasted unjustifiably? I would give him the benefit of the doubt, but others wouldn’t. Some cynics were of the belief that the tears-shedding episode was an attempt to attract public sympathy after the mess caused in the organisation of the botched tournament. What do you think, Abusuapanin?

I was one of those who openly voiced their disapproval for the formation of any commission or committee of enquiry following the World Cup fiasco. I thought it was going to be another wasteful venture, but I’ve now eaten humble pie. The Commission’s proceedings have so far been very revealing, to say the least. But for the proceedings, we would never have known that members of the Black Stars’ management team also pocketed 82,000 American green leaves each. We also wouldn’t have known that the so-called ambassadors received two times what the players received as per diem. It is indeed very sickening!

Many were those who criticised Sulley Muntari for using his Kung fu and Shaolin skills on a member of the Black Stars’ management team. They just could not fathom what prompted him to do what he did. But with the benefit of the Commission’s proceedings, most of them now, at least, understand him. Sulley’s testimony to the commission would definitely clear the fogs dangling in our medullas.

I hope the current man in-charge of the Ministry of Youth and Sports is learning valuable lessons from the actions of his predecessor and the repercussions thereof. I say so, having at the back of my mind that this man almost always court’s controversy. I’m sure the tractor saga and the Atlas fiasco ring a big bell.

As for Hon. Chooboi, I do sympathise with him. I, however, remind him that a blow on the head may be painful but it reinforces one’s neck.

See you next week for another konkonsa, Deo volente!

+