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Opinions of Sunday, 29 July 2018


Meet Hon John Osei Frimpong, the wittiest MP in Ghana

K1 – Koo, do you know who is the wittiest MP in our Parliament, and for that matter, probably the wittiest MP Ghana has ever had?

K2 – Koo, you are the one with the grey beard. So how can I answer your question? YOU should provide the answer. After all, you were a parliamentary correspondent for Radio Ghana when the ‘Motion of Destiny’, asking Britain to grant Ghana her independence, was moved by Prime Minister Kwame Nkrumah, were you not?

K1 – I was there! Oh what a day it was!

And you were there on the night of 5th March 1957, when independence was actually declared, were you not?

Eii Charlie, you have studied my career, have you not?

Shut up! You were in the House when Joe Appiah renamed Krobo Edusei as “Dr. Savundra!” were you not?

I was!

And you were there when Komla Gbedemah made his last speech before going into exile, were you not?

Oh ok! If you are going to list everything, then let me do it myself. But I warn you we shall never leave this pub if I start! For starters: the day the Preventive Detention Act was passed and Ghana emerged as a full-scale dictatorship; the day P K K Quaidoo, a former Nkrumah minister, made a speech against Nkrumah; when the Tolon-Na crossed the carpet….

What about the day YOU made a speech in the Constituent Assembly (as the elected representative, in the 1978-79 Constituent Assembly, of the Ghana Journalists Association) demanding that a fair cocoa price be guaranteed in the Constitution that was being drafted and you went as far as providing a mathematical formula for working out a “fair price”?

You followed all that? You’re not as young as you look, then? Listen to who’s talking? But I’ll let that pass. The thing is….

I also followed your crazy attempt to put in the Constitution, a guarantee that no journalist should ever be forced by the courts to reveal his source! You anticipated the “whistle-blower” paradigm a good forty years ago!

And much good has it done to me! Have you seen my name in any book describing the political evolution of Ghana? But I did ask you: who do you think is the wittiest MP we’ve got at the moment?

And I said I didn’t know!

OK, let me tell you. You probably have never heard his name before, but he is Hon. John Osei Frimpong, MP for Abirem, in the Eastern Region! You can find his bio-details at: What did he do?

Hmmm – that you haven’t heard about it illustrates the absence of good journalism in Ghana. There are supposed to be journalists covering our Parliament, but all they are interested in is “NDC is at the throats of the NPP! (again)!”; “Okudzeto Ablakwa bares his fangs at Akufo-Addo”; and “Kennedy Agyapong blasts his own side!” (again) and that sort of thing.

Well, what else is there apart from MPs’ housing problems and MPs’ cars…. Okay, pay attention. If you heard the following question in the House, would you think it was worth writing about it or not:

QUOTE: I rise to ask the Minister for Energy whether the Ministry has any plans to provide off-grid electricity to the following communities in Abirem Constituency which are difficult to connect to the national grid: Kyriahantan; (MPS LAUGH: YIEEEEEE!);

Tw*nwinso; (MPS: YIEEEEE!”)

Etw* nim nyansa; (MPS YIEEEEEE!)

“K*te ye aboa!” (MPS: YEIIIIII!)

H*oa ye mmobor (MPS YEEEEEIIIII!)

You’re joking?

I am not. In fact, after the MP had finished enumerating the peculiar names of some of his Constituency’s communities, another MP got up and found a clever way of repeating the names after him: “Mr Speaker” (said this MP) “I now understand why My Honourable friend comes from those I call ‘The Happy Lot’. For if he comes from a constituency where there are communities called —-etc. And again, the MPS yelled YIEEEEEE! every time they heard each peculiar name called a second time.

Okay! Okay! But suppose I was there and didn’t speak Twi, how would I know why those names created so much mirth among the MPs who understood what the names meant?

Do you think I’d let that pass? That I would fail to tell you what the funny names meant? No I wouldn’t do that.

Okay, so what do they mean?

Kyiriahantan means “Arrogance is abhorred!”

“Tw*nwinase means “Under the pubic hairs of a woman!”;

*Etw* nim nyansa means a woman’s private parts are very clever!);

“K*te ye aboa!” means ”a man’s ‘member’ is as stupid as a beast” and “H*oa ye mmobor” means the testicles are always the cheated lot!



Apparently, whilst the MP was speaking, some people from his constituency were in the public gallery, listening. They were a chief, a queen mother and a miserable looking elder. One MP was quoted as saying later that “We quietly said the Chief was the ko*te ye aboa, the queen mother was the etw* nim nyansa and the miserable looking elder, the h*oa ye mmobor!

Are you are kidding me?

No. In fact, I have something to say but I won’t say it right now. Give me a few days.

Well, already I have laughed so much that I agree entirely with you that the Hon John Osei Frimpong is the wittiest MP we ever had.

As the Frenchman would say, D’accord! (agreed)