…Muntari was there to assist
By: Kofi Owusu Aduonum
Like the Biblical Messiah’s triumphant entry to Jerusalem, so was Michael Essien’s “second coming” to his land of birth, Awutu Breku, a village about an hour’s drive from Accra, last Tuesday.
Lovers of the iconic midfielder lined up along the street from the Awutu Breku junction to the park in the township to catch a glimpse of him, when the Chelsea star, in the company of a powerful entourage, led by a police escort, hit the junction.
The crowd multiplied when he (Essien) in a red Lacoste interlock, with “A day with Michael Essien” inscription, and designer sunglasses to match, hit the playing grounds. Children, the youth and the elderly had come to the playing grounds to fraternize with their ‘son’.
A few minutes to the commissioning of the borehole, Essien’s team mate, Sulley Muntari, emerged in his ‘military’ jeep, and helped Essien with the exercise. Thereafter Essien joined his pal in his jeep to the playing grounds, and stayed till the end.
Beginning his address in the Awutu lingua franca generated intense screams from the crowd. And after identifying himself to the citizens of the land, he said it had been his dream and inspiration to come back home to support the community.
The program, “A day with Michael Essien” forms part of activities lined up by the Michael Essien Foundation (MEF) to commission a borehole and a ten-seater water closet toilet facility.
He revealed in an interview, that the “A day with Michael Essien” program would be annualised.
And according to the Chairman of the MEF, Mr. Mike Gizo, the commissioning of the projects was a foretaste of the many basic social amenities the Foundation had purposed to spread around the Senya Breku communities.
The day also saw the Chelsea star, with support from his London-based club representatives, in a book launch code-named “Reading Goals,” which is an initiative of the Foundation to inculcate basic reading habits in children with the introduction of kids’ books, as well as a book about Essien.
The head of communications, Chelsea, Emma Wilkinson, praised Essien profusely for the work of the Foundation, saying, “Essien is a great player; his Foundation is doing well, and creating opportunities he never had in his hometown, is a clear demonstration that he has Ghana at heart.”
The Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, Nii Nortey Dua, commended Essien for the project.
Telecommunications company MTN threw its weight behind its icon, with a £25,000 cheque.