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Opinions of Friday, 19 December 2008

Columnist: Awuah, John Chap

Menace On Our Road - Politician Beware Of Our Thumb

Ladies and gentlemen, its is ironic and incredible to think that the mind of an average Ghanaian is so infantile as not to reason or perceive between a good and caring leader and a stomach politician. It leaves my researching mind wondering if ever those who volunteer themselves to serve in various capacities so easily lose touch with realities on the ground. Some lose touch with the suffering of the masses until some miraculous escape from political doldrums/coma usher us into second round before the scales (or need I call it myopic lenses) are removed.

This often happens because you can get hundreds of hungry wolves around you who are determined to sing your praises until doomsday. Then all those who praised you and prophesied into your vainglory will desert you.

The ordeal most motorist and passengers go through arising out of potholes, manholes and death traps only God can tell. So I ask, do our MPs/DCEs/MCEs/Ministers use the same dangerous road we are accustomed to? Well, they do but the difference is that while the powerless motorist use 2 hrs to traverse a 6km undulating road, the land cruiser user escorted by police despatch rider heralding the big man with sirens can cover the same distance in 3mins. The 6km stretch from Achimota to Ofankor is being constructed by a Chinese construction company with some funds from the Chinese government. The superiority complex exhibited by some of these Chinese engineers leaves much to be desired as they give rough and jagged bypass full of sharp and big stones on the way. They treat motorist with contempt showing no regard to our dignity. Heavy trucks either breaking down, getting stuck in the mud or somersaulting is a daily routine with the accompanying result of heavy traffic jam. I once dared to speak to one of the Chinese engineers showing him an accident prone manhole, but with impunity he disregarded my piece of ‘too known advocacy’. The following day a heavy truck tumbled with casualties. Then they decided to level it. This is crazy.

Yamoransa-Kumasi road was constructed some years ago. Over time whether due to the lack of ingenuity on the part of construction engineers or due to diminution of our contract money, the road has been jagged by pot, man and elephant holes. There has been maintenance from Yamoransa to Assin Praso but from Adansi Praso to Obuasi junction is an eye saw. The writer running at a speed of about 60km/hr happened to be involved in an accident. There on a straight road is a manhole; ahead of me is an on-coming vehicle - implying no access to the left. The only alternative is the pedestrian lane. In a flash then the sound of a big bang, screeching metal of my two rims scratching the bare road; and a swing to the left (thank God no head-on collision with the on-coming vehicle) then to the right and a forced halt – thank you Jesus! The result was that I had my two tyres burst and torn; front rim broken and front shaft broken in the middle of a looming darkness. Then in few minutes another Benz bumped into same trap with his wheel caps running in every direction– another accident. A Good Samaritan taxi driver who showed up seems to know it all. “It happens everyday at this spot – some with fatal consequence”. Then I asked, are there MP and DCE in this area? Yes! Affirmed by a willing to help driver Akwasi. Just two metres away stands a beautifully excellently positioned bill board displaying a beaming aspiring MP with inscription, “vote for me” – for more accident on the road? I asked myself, do we need president Kufuor to come to every spot with fresh ideas on how we can cover a potential accident-masterminding manhole? Action speak louder than words, instead of wasting so much resource canvassing for vote, they could spend one tenth of that money to develop our areas and the common people will appreciate and confirm with our thumbs that they deserve extension.

But as it is now the swollen headed politician who is drunk with the praises of singers will be sent home – NO RENEWAL OF CONTRACT. GO HOME AND LEARN THE MEANING OF MINISTER/MCE/ASSEMBLY MAN AND COME AGAIN. THOSE WHO SING YOUR PRAISES ARE STILL WAITING TO DANCE YOUR DIRGES.

John Chap Awuah

A Business Consultant Accra