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Opinions of Monday, 27 April 2020

Columnist: Emmanuel Dei Nuamah

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is 'the man in the arena'

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

The president of the Republic of Ghana has shown a leadership role in fighting against the novel pandemic, COVID-19. I will refer to him as "The Man in the Arena", the term which was captured from the speech of the formal president of the United States of America, Theodore Roosevelt, entitled, "Citizenship in a Republic".

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is the first President in Africa who authorised the testing of people from abroad to the country and quarantine all the travellers in the standard hotels. He is also the first President in the continent of Africa to lift the lockdown based on Science and Data available. He has announced free water to all citizens both domestic and commercial purposes and provides raw food items and hot cooked meals for the poor and vulnerable communities, free electricity for the poorest of the poor and 50% electricity for the average Ghanaians and industries for three months. He has again, supported all health workers by given them tax free from their basic salaries and also given the front line workers of the health sector fighting against COVID-19 50% allowances on top of their salaries for three months. He is also the first President in the world to announce of testing all the security personnel’s who involved in the fighting against COVID-19. In fact, he is through "The man in Arena" because he is heavily involved in a situation that requires courage, skill, and tenacity towards this situation at hand, COVID-19.

Citizenship in a Republic is the title of a speech given by the former President of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt, at the Sorbonne in Paris, France on April 23, 1910.[1]

One notable passage on page seven of the 35-page speech is referred to as "The Man in the Arena":[2][3]

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Someone who is heavily involved in a situation that requires courage, skill, or tenacity (as opposed to someone sitting on the sidelines and watching), is sometimes referred to as "The Man in the Arena". Indeed, upon his posture of the to the happenings towards the novel pandemic, COVID-19, President Akuffo Addo is proven to be "The Man in the Arena".