Tuesday, December 30, 2008

See You Next Year

On the eve of New Year, I still have got tons of stuff I want to blog about.
However, I have decided to hold until after the New Year Celebrations.
Whereas my mind is persuading me to blog about the recent happenings around me, my heart is arguing otherwise. I think there is a measure of wisdom in waiting until after the season of contra-rhythm has passed. I suppose I need the time to chill out and also to allow the issues I want to write about to crystallise into concrete and articulable shapes.
Let us therefore hang up the boots for a while and make time to detoxify our souls and spirits, recharge our batteries as well as overhaul our systems so that we can come back much more stronger, balanced, and reloaded for what lies ahead in 2009.

Wishing you a Super Prosperous New Year!
Lots of Love to y'all.!!
Stay blessed!!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays and Goodwill to All in 2009

I want to take the opportunity that Christmas and New Year offers to wish all the readers of this blog a fulfilling and joyous season. May your portion be blessed beyond your wildest expectations in the year ahead.

To my fellow bloggers: thanks for your ideas, thoughts and expressions that have challenged, inspired and informed us all for the better. The intellectual stimulation has been worth while. May you all be refreshed and energised for a more fruitful 2009. Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Super-prosperous New Year!

To our beloved Ghana, I say: the best days of Ghana are about to begin big time .
For all of us, Ghanaians, still harbouring doubts about Ghana, let me encourage you to allow hope to reign in your hearts. Let us all learn to cultivate positive thoughts about ourselves as a people and about what lies ahead of our beloved Ghana. It shall be well with Ghana.

To all Family and Friends: let us continue to uphold one another in the days ahead. I sense a tremendous relief in my spirit. I don't know what it implies, but I believe that something extraordinary is around the corner.
Love you all so much. Mwa-mwa-mwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!


Monday, December 22, 2008

On the Road to Ntabankulu

Not that long ago, Madam Superior and I received an invitation by SMS from a family friend.
The type of friend who was, then was not and now is. You know what I mean? We had not heard from that beautiful soul for a great whale of time. Having vanished from our space and life without any 'goodbyes' and 'see you laters', the SMS came as a shock. Here was an opportunity for MS and myself for a retrospective analysis of who our re-connecting friend had meant to us.
Born and raised up in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa, she had come to the city of gold, Jozi, to see the world for herself and evidently get her hands on the cash growing on the trees all over the place.
Somehow, we found her in our space and soon after in our life and home.
We got to know a bit about her for about two years. A pure Xhosa girl she was and she possessed all the marching physical features to prove her unmistakable identity! I still remember her for the unignorable presence, the warm personality and the profusely disarming smiles.
MS was a great helper and mentor for her. So she was the one who kept on asking others about her. One day MS got to know that she was now working in Port Elizabeth. With that information, we managed to move on with our lives.
By the SMS, our friend was inviting us to come and grace her wedding as Special Guests. The traditional wedding is taking place on 27 December in Ntabankulu, about 15 hours drive from Johannesburg.
So to Ntabankulu we go! Hope we will have some time to look around this beautiful part of South Africa and of course perform our duties as Special Guests honourably.
Will keep you posted on the wedding.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Yuletidinal Blues

The saying " it does not rain, it pours" is a pretty apt description of the multifaceted avalanches that have conspired together to unleash cruel blows on some of us during this season of Christmas. Ouch!!
The global recession, the insane increase in the cost of utilities, the unannounced spike in insurance premiums and the hike in the costs of food and clothing are some of the elements of this brutal gang, robbing us big time of our right to make merry.
As usual, the malls are pulsating with enticingly hypnotic schemes and mouthwatering deals to get us to swipe the credit cards.
Those of us who, until now, have been keen celebrants of the commercial side of the season of merriment have had to learn quickly the art of avoiding the malls of Johannesburg like a plaque. They are not going to ride on my back, laughing, all the way to the bank!
I have an incredible stamina when it comes to holding unto my ever-tinning purse, but I can't say the same thing about you know who, so, in Kwaku Ananse's style, I am ever devising creative ways to avoid going to that house of pain.
As a properly-raised Ghanaian I am a believer in the noble art of avoiding unaffordable consumption! I am teaching some of my non-Ghanaian friends how to cut corners in order to provide, at least, a semblance of normality in their homes.
So not only are the usual suspects going to receive smaller scales of the boxes under the tree, the tree itself will be a much-cheaper Chinese version.
By the way, where is Santa Claus when you really need him? Or, perhaps, he also is cutting down on his expenses this time around. Hohoho!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Frayed Emotions: Ghanaians Need Psychological Detoxing

Just today one of the guys in the office told me I was looking stressed and drained like someone with a hangover after an all-night drinking marathon.
The fact is I don't do alcohol, so the comments, at first, seemed out of place. Then I remembered how I had almost crashed into two cars yesterday, and it all started getting clearer in my mind. The cliff-hanger elections and the fact that we have been deprived of the knowledge of the final picture must have had some effect on me.
Now I am beginning to realise that the national psyche of Ghana can suffer a profound damage if the Electoral Commission of Ghana does not step in this afternoon with the much-anticipated results.
The tear and wear resulting from the emotional roller-coaster of the current general elections, in my opinion, requires some form of therapeutic management. We must admit the campaigns and the waiting have been bruising to every one of us.
Ghana has an Auditor General, an Attorney- General and a Statistician General. All these Generals carry out very important national agenda. Perhaps we also need a Psychologist General to take care of our psychological well-being. Someone who can channel the entire Nation of Ghana into lalaland every time(which is almost every second) someone drives us nuts like they are doing to us right now!
So if, all of a sudden, you begin to experience panic attacks, insomnia, intemperance, lack of concentration at work etc, it is possible that you may be suffering from post-election anxiety disorder(if there is such a medical condition).
Oops! We are not yet in the post-election season. We are being told to prepare for a second-round. Who needs a second round of emotional crucifixion? I am not particularly happy with second rounds, except in one particular sphere of life which involves the release of a good measure of endorphins which I am told are good for one's health.
Not only are Ghanaians going to be exposed once again to a second round of intolerable political dribble, but we are also going to have our Christmas stolen from us on the alter of electing a political saviour!

Oh what a saviour we have in Atta Mills and Nana Akuffo Addo!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

What the Hell is Happening!

I had really hoped to catch the release of the final tally of the presidential election live on the web. Alas, my zeal is gradually turning into annoyance, thanks to Afari-Gyan and his team.
Having begun with the patience of Job, I must confess that the Electoral Commission of Ghana has single-handedly managed to turn the euphoria associated with the elections into one of total disenchantment. The silence from their quarters is stupefying.
It is simply not funny any more and the earlier the officials at the EC woke up from their provocative slumber the better it will be for everybody.
By their obfuscation, they are giving ample ammunition into the hands of those prone to bizarre utterances to unleash mayhem and anarchy.
For goodness sake release the results NOW!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Ghana 2008 Elections: The Expected Outcome?

If everything goes according to the plans of the Electoral Commission of Ghana, as expected, the whole world will be celebrating with all peace-loving Ghanaians another milestone in our democratic system by Wednesday, 10 December 2008.

With the heightened preparedness of the security apparatchik , the appeal by most of the political parties to their supporters to conduct themselves honourably coupled with the acute awareness of most Ghanaians of the need to the keep the peace, I really see no reason for alarm bells as far as the legitimacy and fairness of the 7 December elections is concerned.

On the scale of probabilities, I perceive that the ALPHA SCENARIO in my earlier blogpost is the most plausible outcome after the elections albeit with some variations because of the on-going global economic recession. This notwithstanding my qualms about the absence of a transformational leader in the midst of the contenders for the post of CEO of Ghana Inc. as posted here.

While it is statistically possible to compute the expected outcome of any future event at any time before the actual event itself, the situation of predicting the outcome of the presidential election in Ghana is severely compromised by the dearth of reliable data on the ground.Another problem has been the subjective manner in which some of the polling of the 2008 elections has been carried out. Read this, this and this and also this.

Whispers from the ground reaching my wide-opened ears are( Caution: this has nothing to do with my personal preference ) that the presidential candidate of the incumbent party will be given the nod by Ghanaians to rule after the elections.
Whilst it is not yet conclusive whether there will be a re-run, it is believed by guys I talk to here that, Nana Akuffo Addo and the NPP have a few percentage points ahead of Prof. Atta Mills and NDC in the final home stretch of the political game. True/False? Anyhow, that is what I am hearing!
Wishing Ghanaians, home and away, and the friends of Ghana a free, fair, peaceful and memorable elections on 7 December 2008!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Shock Therapy: Dealing With The Madness On The Roads

How unbelievably fast the days roll in and out these years!
I cannot bring myself to believe that we are already in December. The year is coming to an end and with that a new year is about to begin. Time indeed waits for no man!
The much-celebrated festive season, Christmas and New Year, is around the corner. However with the on-going global recession, not many people will be able to splash out on gifts for family and friends. Some folks are very happy that this Christmas will be a real one and not a commercial one.
Whatever way you look at it, it appears that Wall Street has become the Grinch who stole Christmas!
Talking about the festive season, it is also the time when many people take time off for holidays as well as visit family and friends all over the place.
Unfortunately with the increase in the number of vehicles on the roads, there is always a spike in road accidents, resulting in deaths and economic losses running into billions of rands every year during the festive season.
With the horrible road death statistics of South Africa as it stands, I was not the least surprised to hear a program on a talk show radio station focusing on whether or not shock therapy should be employed to curb the behaviour of drivers caught breaking the rules of the road.
By shock therapy, callers were advocating for pictures of the most horrendous accidents in all the gory details to be shown to offending drivers on top of the conventional severe fines.
I say, shock therapy is fine by me , provided it will lead to a lasting change in the behaviour of those who don't give a hoot for their own lives and that of other road users!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Slavery: The Story So Far!

Today is the commemoration of international day of the abolition of slavery.

2 December, 1949 was the day of the adoption, by the General Assembly, of the United Nations Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others. Again by resolution 57/195, the General Assembly on 18 December 2003 proclaimed 2004 the International Year to Commemorate the Struggle against Slavery and its Abolition.
Also on 28 November 2006 by another resolution, the Assembly designated 25 March 2007 as the International Day for the Commemoration of the 200th Anniversary of the Abolition of the Transatlantic Slave Trade. These resolutions, in my opinion, have served no purpose other than the mere publicity and awareness generated in the corridors the United Nations.

Despite the untold anguish, humiliation and deprivation that millions of men and women from Africa and elsewhere went through as a result of the slave trade, today we can not claim to have ridden the world of this evil. Child trafficking, forced prostitution and many other forms of slavery are still prevalent in many corners of the world.
In Mauritania and Sudan, the crudest form of this abominable practice still goes on. And again it is the dark-skinned man and woman who are being held in slavery, wasting away their God-given lives in the service of some bigoted monsters.

Let us remember all the current victims of slavery as well as all those who, for the past 201+ years, lost their lives, worth and freedom. At least on this day, let us keep them in our prayers and collective memory. After all, they were human just like us!.