There is an interesting phenomenon in Ghana that never ceases to amuse me. In fact, it is as laughable as it is serious. Some people have attempted to link this occurrence to what they describe as the “SHORT MEMORY” of the Ghanaian.
It appears that, as a people, we make so much noise about issues that negatively affect us only at the particular times that the problems come up “fresh”. After a while, we all forget about the concerns or pretend that we have dealt with them.
Just recently, before the World Cup in Brazil, a court in Accra found businessman and financial engineer, Mr Alfred Agbesi Woyome, guilty of illegally taking state funds – about GH¢51 million.
All of us started putting pressure on the government, through passionate comments in the press, to literally chase the “rich man” for the money that he had illegitimately taken from the poor taxpayer.
Today, nobody is talking about Mr Woyome and his dishonest money anymore. Not even the media have been able to sustain the pressure on the government to collect the money from Mr Woyome for us, or at least keep us constantly informed about the efforts being made to “bring back the Woyome cash.”
Indeed, just when the Woyome issue became very hot in the media, the national senior soccer team, the Black Stars literally came to ‘save’ him by misbehaving “big time” at the World Cup in Brazil and thus practically pushed Woyome off the media landscape.
The Black Stars team plus those who wasted our money in Brazil, effectively climbed onto the public discussion platform and the talk was all about them.
The issues about the Black Stars became even more interesting when the former Minister of Sports, Mr Elvis Afriyie Ankrah, decided to cry ‘’maa maa maa’’ when he appeared before the Justice Dzamefe Commission of Inquiry, which is trying to find answers to the numerous questions that cropped up during Ghana’s participation in the World Cup.
After crying for no apparent reason, Afriyie Ankrah passed the wailing baton to one of the top organisers of the ill-fated campaign in Brazil, Mr Kojo Adu Asare, who also cried ‘’waa waa waa’’ before the Commission.
Just when Ghanaians were sharpening their mouths to blast Afriyie Ankrah and Adu Asare for their crying antics, the Commissioner of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice, (CHRAJ), the ultra-pretty Ms Lauretta Lamptey, also came to ‘save’ “Ankrah and the Wailers”.
Ms Lamptey shockingly and unexpectedly became the unwelcome subject of public discourse, anger and ridicule when news broke that she had spent more than $200, 000 on rent in three years.
Obviously, the public did not have enough time to discuss the dollar blowing activities of the CHRAJ boss before she was also ‘saved’ by my friend and colleague, Mr Daniel Kenu, who is the Ashanti Regional Correspondent of the Graphic Communications Group.
Mr Kenu had reportedly been assaulted by Mr Baffour Gyan, the elder brother of Black Stars Captain, Asamoah Gyan, following what was described as “bad” questions that Mr Kenu had thrown at Asamoah Gyan during a press conference held in Kumasi before the Ghana-Uganda African Cup of Nations qualifier.
Baffour Gyan was charged with assault and put before court. It may be safe to say that the “whole” Ghana expected the case to go the whole hog and people also anticipated that Baffour would be punished severely to serve as a deterrent to those who think they can attack journalists, who are carrying out their legitimate duties, and get away with it.
Mr Kenu “swerved” everybody and decided to discontinue the case and indeed withdrew it from the court.
His reason? Well, he said the case was making his blood pressure rise too high. He also said his uncle, Efo Kwame, had died in the Eastern Region. Again, he claimed that his family’s name, Kenu, had been in the media too much lately and indeed, there were fears that his mother, who is also hypertensive could drop dead if the case dragged on.
Hmmm! Mr Kenu! Really, what he needs now is for someone to do “something” to take the media searchlight off him in order to save him and the rest of his family from hypertension-related fatalities.
On this note, the best thing that must be done to save the Kenus from the “media scare” is for the government to “bring back our cash” from Mr Woyome, Ms Lamptey and the people who misapplied the Black Stars World Cup funds so that the public discourse will move swiftly away from Mr Kenu to save his name and life!