Feature Article of Sunday, 23 September 2012
Columnist: Nkrumah, B. B.
I was asked to use my influence to calm tensions ahead of Ghana’s elections. As a true Ghanaian, I accepted the challenge to do just that; in fact, I was excited that my eloquence and advocacy for brotherly love have been recognized. My effort to honor the President’s request was shown live on GTV as I addressed my fellow Ghanaians.
I remember clearly saying: ‘good evening my fellow countrymen & women, I am humbled to be called upon to talk about the election. My response to the government's invitation should not be misconstrued as partisan lecture, but as an act of citizenship.’ I continued, “we are one people, under one nation although different backgrounds. But we should not forget we have one common goal, and that is a prosperous GHANA.’’ I followed with: “Ghana is plural not a singular term, and that means, it belongs to PEOPLE but not ONE PERSON or SPECIFIC PERSONS. I want to remind all that success is faster and easily achieved often when there are diversity of ideas and corporation.”
My speech continued, “Fellow Citizens, far too often we allow our zeal for one political party to impede our perception, and hence our views about our neighbors. We easily forget that the idea of democracy is to allow all ideas to be expressed freely, both good and bad, without intimidation. Yet our actions in our modern democracy undermine the very process we have all agreed to elect our government functions. It is time for us to prove to the world that we understand democracy, and indeed the people of Ghana are rationale, and caring, and loving, and tolerable. In short, our actions should be worthy of emulation by our neighbors in Africa.” I used this example as a reminder: “Ladies & gentlemen, our unity is best demonstrated when any of our national soccer teams faces an opponent. See how we easily forget about politics and unite in faith and purpose to rally for Ghana to win. That atmosphere and feeling is no different from the aims of democracy. Frankly, that is the purpose of being a Ghanaian. We have inalienable and indirect commitment to disagree to agree without fist fight or bloodshed or insults as PEOPLE of one nation. I added by saying, “let us learn from how the supporters of the two traditional arch rival soccer clubs in Ghana have systematically learned to embrace defeat by their opponent without fight. Not so in the early stages of the history of these clubs. The beauty of Hearts of Oak and Kotoko supporters is the sharing of one stand (roof) at the stadium when these two teams meet, and it cannot be overemphasized” Go Fabulous!
I went on to plead with Ghanaians to see one another as family and never turn their disagreements into fist fight or bloodshed. Ironically, I used myself as an example by telling my fellow Ghanaians that although I am NPP fanatic (I used to be until I became independent), I heeded to the call of NDC government to deliver this speech at NDC’s platform. I am not just talking the talk but I am walking it. In other words, I will do anything to promote peace, unity, and corporation in the supreme interest of our nation, regardless of the political party in power. Wow! Here is the unbelievable part of this speech: It was a dream. When I woke up, I didn't believe all that wasn't real. For a minute, I had to shake myself to confirm what I thought I was doing was indeed a dream. And it was. I never received any call from the President of Ghana, and I did not give any speech anywhere, just for the records. On the other hand, I am happy to share what transpired in the virtual (dream) world with all Ghanaians. Who knows? Ghanaians may be reading, and the dream would be realized any ways.
God Bless The People of Ghana, and God Bless Ghana.
By Bright Nkrumah