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Opinions of Thursday, 23 January 2014

Columnist: Ali, Prince Justice

Donation of machete and a cloth to men and women groups

My brothers and sisters, my attention has been drawn to an article "Ask Your MP" and a picture on a Facebook page that announces some kind of assistance the member of parliament Alijata Sulemana gave to some men and women groups in some selected communities in the constituency. In fact, a bit of better attempt but ill-timed. In the aforementioned article, mention was made of the Hon MP providing each woman and man with a machete and a cloth. The said donations were said to be her assistance towards the reduction of rural poverty.
Though this initiative is somehow better, both the ill-timing and the number of unanswered questions almost negated the seemingly good gesture. In this 21st Century, to say that a machete and a cloth are meant for poverty reduction is absolutely ridiculous. What is the total monetary value of these items? Equally mischievous and surprising is the mentioning of some communities without specifically naming the said communities. Since when did Hon Alijata go to parliament only to forget the names of key communities in her constituency? Anyway, what criterion was used by the Hon, her self-acclaimed spokesman (Gbentie Suleaman Haleru) and other credulous team members to select those beneficiary communities?
At least, common sense suggests that for a MP to donate items to her constituents, the constituency executives and the party executives of the beneficiary communities are usually the first groups to be informed. But to best of my knowledge, my thorough investigation revealed that the party executives were not in the known—a clear manifestation of how miscalculated the event went. Anyway, such divisive tactics characterize the Hon MP. But in this instance, I hardly blamed her because the trivial nature of the donation might be so embarrassing that she didn’t want the aggrieved constituency executives to know.

Tortimmah Ali once said, "As an opinion leader, always leave good footprint and inspiring ideas that are never bankrupt and which people will forever cherish". The Hon Alijata Sulemana’s idea of reducing poverty in the district is both bankrupt and transient. By providing unknown community groups with these insignificant materials is the worst poverty-reduction strategy in the history of our time. Surprisingly, the originator is a lawmaker.

To refresh the memories of readers, I refer you to an earlier action of the Hon. An article was posted on the same Facebook in which the Hon. MP claimed providing schools with exercise books. Reminiscent of this volatile one-machete and one-cloth poverty alleviation programme, the beneficiary schools were never disclosed. Some checks revealed that a lot of schools never got these books. Conspicuously among the schools that never received the books are Bandei, Kulfuo, Wallembelle and others many. The question then and which still remained unanswered is when the rest of the schools will be getting their share of exercise books? At least, I thought the Hon MP would have been consistent enough to complete the distribution of the books before initiation another project. Sorry, do these activities even qualify to be called projects? Fellow District Men and Women, is the Hon MP longing to be remembered for her halfway projects?

Without delay, the Hon MP will do herself some good if kindly specifies the communities that benefited from this latest initiative. With our eyes widely open and our ears directed towards the Hon, declaring the total monetary value of the donated items will equally be worth paying attention to. Not deserving to be mentioned are the modalities put in place by the MP to ensure that all the other communities get their share—when and how will they get theirs?
Executing the above suggestions, the Hon MP will bring equity and understanding to all communities in her constituency. She is at the service of all and not some selected communities in Sissala East. This and many others should be answered by the MP to help calm the nerves of agitating communities. I also entreat the Hon to customize her activities by always specifying beneficiaries.
Thank you!
Written by: Prince Justice Ali