Diasporian News of Monday, 22 October 2012

Source: Kofi Owusu-Ansah

Ireland Join Hands To Celebrate A Life of A Dynamic Individual

It was Saturday, 20th October 2012 and the setting was the Crown Plaza
Hotel in Terrelystown in the Republic of Ireland, the venue that had hosted
many important visits of important persons from Ghana in the past and the
occasion this time was to join hands with friends and colleagues to
celebrate the life of a young and dynamic person who has always being there
for the Ghanaian Community. This fine energetic young man has against all
the odds, according to what we have learned from the family from his
background, in the early part of his academic life in the elementary school
was not all that brilliant and as all of us who were educated in Ghana
know, his teachers felt his parents were wasting their money putting him in
a private school, they felt he should be taken to a public school but against
all the odds, he proved that with dedication,determination,hardwork and the
resolve not to live by anybody’s standards and through the Grace of God as
he rightly put it, he is the one we are celebrating today.

Dr. Vincent Agyapong is the brain child of the Association of Ghanaian
Professionals in Ireland (AGPI). As it has always been the case with the
Ghanaian, anything that works need not to be supported so the knives were
out right from the inception of this unique association to make sure the
association never saw the light of day. The Ghanaian in Ireland was so
opposed to the word “Professional” forgetting that we are all
professionals in our own rights but God so good, it is the word
“Professional” in the association’s name which will endear us to our host,
the Republic of Ireland.

The Association has chalked so many achievements including getting the
Prestigious St. Vincent Hospital to team up with the association to sponsor
students in Ghanaian Universities to undertake a tour study in Psychiatry in
Institutions in this country. They have undertaking with the association
that they would send top experts in Psychiatry to Ghanaian universities in
introducing modern methods of caring for the mentally challenged patients
in Ghana, and for the past three years they have been honouring this
undertaking. Even when the Ghana government was enacting the Mental Health
Bill to repeal the one existing since 1838, they consulted Dr Vincent
Agyapong to garner ideals from the AGPI.

When the EU was looking for any minority organisation in Ireland to
spearhead the integration of the minority in Ireland into the mainstream
Irish society, they could not find any credible organisation than the
Association of Ghanaian Professionals in Ireland (AGPI). The EU was not
afraid to work with the AGPI under the able leadership of Dr Vincent
Agyapong for 18 months to educate the minorities in Ireland including
Europeans, Asians, South Americans and Africans in a form of play, “Where
the Rivers Meet” and the play, hosted in Spain was such a success that the
EU has adopted it to be screened in other parts of Europe in the near

I am privileged to have worked first hand with Dr Vincent Agyapong and I am
not ashamed to say that he really is a fine human being, A man not afraid
to speak his mind when there is the need to effect a positive change in a
person’s life. He is not the type who thinks in terms of a person’s racial
background, he cuts across all races and it was not surprising to me at all
when the Deputy Head of Nigerian Mission in Ireland stated that: My first
encounter with Vincent was the day he called the Embassy to request for
assistance for a Nigerian who needed help” Here you are with a Ghanaian,
phoning our embassy that a Nigerian citizen needed help”. The kind of
person who cuts across all racial barriers.
Dr Vincent Agyapong, you have been maligned too much in the Ghanaian
society; there were those little minds who have always insulted you through
Ghanaweb but my encouraging words to you are. “You never give up on your
calling, we are all accountable to our maker but not to man. The Ghanaian,
giving the opportunity will most of the time choose being idle to doing
something to better the lot of others so the more they insult and criticise
you, rest assured that you are doing what your maker has instructed you to
do. You are not seeking glory for yourself, whatever positive thing you do
that inspires, encourages and allows the far-sighted to achieve their
potential, you are keeping the command of Jesus;. “Go ye therefore unto
every nation by preaching the Gospel to the entire universe” and you don’t
need to be a pastor before you can do the work of God, as you help people,
making sure they are integrated into the host society, as you seek help for
somebody from another country, as you make sure a person like me gets a job
to do, as you attend to numerous Ghanaians with their many challenging
issues in this country, you have done it for Christ. You are measured by
God’s standards but not by human standards. My family and I are privileged
to have you as a friend and a colleague. Happy birthday to you and May the
Good Lord continues to bless you and your family.