Feature Article of Saturday, 10 May 2014
Columnist: Okoampa-Ahoofe, Kwame
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
He has been able to cozily get away with it because as a people, Akans are less cohesive that we need, and ought, to be. I am not talking about the sort of clannishness or tribalism that hermetically admits of no healthy assimilation of friendly and well-meaning outsiders. What I am talking about here is the proactive need to heartily celebrate our "political" differences even while also accepting the fact that culturally, as clearly defined and articulated by the kinship mortar of our eight clan, or matrilineal, divisions, we fundamentally are one people.
Heaven knows that we, Akans, are perhaps the most hospitable meta-nation of indigenous Africans - spanning Ghana, Ivory Coast, Togo and other parts of the West African sub-region - which is why we are increasingly becoming ethnic minorities in our homelands. Our self-proclaimed and avowed enemies recognize this insidious state of affairs, thus their patently cavalier and even downright disrespectful attitude towards us.
The fact of the matter is that the man vigorously campaigned for President on the platform of Northern Entitlement, as we have scandalously witnessed with the SADA Afforestation scam-artistry; then also, we have witnessed GYEEDA and other regionally biased instances of flagrant frauds shamelessly disguised as accelerated development programs for the northern-half of the country. The guilt trip being mischievously pulled over the eyes of us, southerners, will not wash.
Akans, for such is how southern Ghanaians are homogeneously envisaged by many a northern Ghanaian, have not at anytime, held back the economic development clock, or agenda, of northern Ghanaians and cannot, and ought not, be held in any way responsible for the same. We have simply been more ingenious in putting to maximum use the talents which Divine Providence has availed all nationalities and ethnicities of humans. We are especially envied and pooh-poohed because we have relatively held ourselves to higher standards than most of our neighbors. This has been the theme of the so-called Rawlings Revolution, and of all the other faux-revolutions that have emanated therefrom.
We are, of course, ungrateful for developmental pittances because we are not a self-pitying people. For that matter, the Bole-Bamboi petty chieftain is quite right in suggesting that not even if the National Democratic Congress (NDC) regime were to pave all the streets and highways in Oseikrom with gold, would Asantes/Akans be apt to feel grateful for such "kindly gesture." You see, we have seen and been mining this global symbol of wealth for centuries, and had been doing so for ages before all these other pathologically envious and kleptocratic folks swarmed our lands - from Ancient Ghana to Wagadugu and Modern Ghana.
It is not that we lack any remarkable sense of gratitude, it is just that we tend to think bigger and have been able to deal with our environments relatively and remarkably better than all these other jaundiced souls who seem to equate their prosperity and success with our "revolutionary" liquidation. Anyway, I am glad that the Russian-trained Gonja drum-major insulted the Asantehene and Asanteman in much the same manner that he recently thumbed his snub-nose at the Okyenhene and Okyeman on the apocalyptic tragedy that is Galamsey.
To be frank with the dear reader, I was beginning to be worried silly over his rather deft and suave divide-and-dominate strategy. So far, the game appears to be going great and even producing miracles for the Fante chieftains and their loyal subjects. But even here, it is the proverbial mouse and cat, or cat and mouse, at play. The Fantes have, so far, smartly demonstrated that they know how to play the game of forked-tongues. Talk Galamsey here and spport this patently suicidal venture there. That is the vintage strategy of our "elected" Gonja petty chieftain. And this is also what we, New Yorkers, call "talking a good game and doing absolutely nothing and getting away with the same."
There, of course, will surely be hell to pay in the offing. It is only a matter of time. And if the hawk still despises the "dorky" dance of the fowl, then maybe the fowl needs to learn a trick or two about the genius of kites vis-a-vis synchronized flying. After all, haven't we humans learned to fly with the steely wings of iron hawks and drones? And then again, how does the fowl feel feasting on a bowl of chicken soup prepared for her by the hawk?
________________________________________________________________ *Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D. Department of English Nassau Community College of SUNY Garden City, New York Board Member, The Nassau Review May 7, 2014 E-mail: [email protected] ###