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Opinions of Saturday, 24 October 2015

Columnist: Brako-Powers, Kwabena

We All Gotta Taste Butter Bread It’s Our Heritage

Kwabena Brako-Powers (G.I.J)

I took my usual 30 kilometers walk to the dark skinned woman who sells my fav butter bread in the wooden shop near the Kasoa traffic light. She smiles anytime I get there as though she relished my presence or so. As I drew closer I realized that activities around have been brought to a standstill. The place was fully armed with police men. No one was moving except me or it looks that way. The cars from the four ends of the road have been stopped. The phone repairers, market sellers, and children selling pure water, rushed to the road in an expectant mood throwing furtive glances anywhere. I saw a lady tossed the question: ‘who?’ on her lips as she chew her gum which look whitish than she first bought it. She bubbled it with the help of her tongue.
I monitored my steps as I drew closer to my favorite seller. She smiles. I saw her right hand reached for her left ear to adjust the headset she had on. I shoveled GHC5.00 out of my pocket to her and called out: ‘3 cedis butter bread. I want the soft one.’ She nodded as though responding to me, but I realized her response was a consequence of what she was listening to on her phone. I was not excited with the one she gave me, at least she saw that herself. It was not the kind she gives me. I felt anger begin to gather in my head for this woman who had no clue what was about to happen to her. I clashed my teeth as she hands the change to me. ‘Thank you’, she said.
As I moved onto the road I saw motorcades riders’ sped towards where I stood heading for Accra. The riders were soon to be followed by seven, as I took the count, black V8 cars burying the president’s car in the middle with the Ghana flag and the flag of the presidency sitting on the front tips of the car. I saw the excitement on the faces of onlookers beamed and tossed to others the way infection spreads. The police men and women were not left in the excitement. They each saluted the Commander-In-Chief of the nation holding their legs together till the president’s car sped past them.
A man who was then seconds away from me took a step closer to me. ‘Occupying a leadership position in Ghana is sweet’, he said. I turned to his direction in acknowledgement of his unsolicited opinion. He smiled. I replied with a smile. He looked at me. He felt he’s found a friend in me or something like that. ‘This is our country, but the poor are left out in the prosperity of the nation’, he continued. He went on to give me some solid analysis to stress his points. As he talked my mind went back to the butter bread seller. The pile of bread she had arranged today looked enticing like a sunny thighs of a lady. Who wouldn’t want a bite?
In similar fashion, building prosperity in this country must be socially engineered to benefit everyone – the poor and the rich alike. We cannot turn to the poor anytime we need their mandate only to abandon them on the way. This is our country. We all deserve a bite. The cake when shared with justice, care, humanness, love, patriotism and future-mindedness would be enough to satisfy the greed of all of us and not some of us. The whole is better and active than the sum of all of us. This country is our heritage.