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Opinions of Wednesday, 7 October 2020

Columnist: Kristie Baiden

A true statesman: Ambassador Edward Boateng

No man is a saint but if a man does a commendable deed, be sure to give him his dues.

As a people, we are quick to criticize and condemn our leaders, and blatantly refuse to acknowledge their good deeds. You don’t have to always agree with a person but look at the fruits (works) they are bearing or trying to bear and make an informed and balanced impression of that person.

The Ambassador of Ghana to China, Mr. Edward Boateng, deserves due recognition for the commendable works he has done and keeps doing for the Ghanaian diaspora in China.

Over my 5 years of stay in China, this is the first time I’ve seen an ambassador come low to actively interact with students and participate in activities. Yes, he is appointed to be a father figure for Ghanaians in China and represent the country in a positive light. He chose the role of a responsible father and not a negligent one.

I first met Ambassador in Wuhan. I had no idea who he was. He is a gentle and unassuming man. You wouldn’t know he is the ambassador if you aren’t told. He has no pomposity or ‘air’ about him. A humble and gentle fellow ready to render service when needed. I met him again in Beijing at a Duapa event where he was one of the speakers. From his speech, you could tell this is a man with a purpose. A man with drive. A man who has the youth at heart. A man is interested in equipping the next generation of leaders to take the country and world to greater levels.

During the onset of the Covid-19, he helped organize a series of online events to engage students by inviting prominent speakers who addressed diverse topics ranging from entrepreneurship to nation-building. He duly participated in all events and even invited a few of his colleague ambassadors. I don’t know about the deeds of the ambassadors of other African centuries here in China but should they all have such drive and dedication, I believe Africa is well represented and with time their efforts will immensely contribute to creating a positive image of Africa in China.

I conclude with this statement by Nkrumah which aptly summarises my view of Ambassador Boateng or at least a glimpse of the man I hope he is by the fruits I have seen him bear.

“To this end, Africa needs a new type of citizen, a dedicated, modest, honest, and informed man. A man submerges self in service to the nation and mankind. A man who abhors greed and detests vanity. A new type of man whose humility is his strength and whose integrity is his greatness” ? Kwame Nkrumah, Africa Must Unite.

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