Hopefully, the Blessing
There was a time that among seventeen aspirants from one particular political party from our Republic, there were three men who hailed from the “hilarious profession” dubbed “medicine.” Not many in the population had a favorable opinion on this issue, and many were very, very vocal as such about it. The arguments were varied, and many. In the case of one of the aspirants, some citizens felt his stand to want to be President of the Republic was “tantamount to a betrayal.” And why the harsh word? The opponents felt the nation had invested so much in this individual’s career, and, therefore, deserved to benefit from his activities in that rare surgical discipline, and not in a field in which the prominent doctor had no training, namely, politics! For some citizens, “a medical doctor ought to stay in the field of medicine, and not wobble into politics, period!” The same went for the other two, only less loudly, corresponding to their status in medicine, deemed as not as prominent. The problem solved itself, as the three did not get far when the time for voting arrived. Questions have been raised as to what attracts so many men of the medical profession in Africa to enter politics. Malawi, Uganda, Ghana (quite a lot at various times since independence), North Africa, Latin America, and Dr. Sun Yat Sen in the Peoples’ Republic of China. In the case of Dr. Chuwago of Russia, he had no choice, he was pushed. What makes people want to enter politics at all, especially in Africa, to that extent? Since educated people have been enticed into it (and that should include doctors), why is it that it is again in Africa that the least economic and political progress, especially towards democracy, and economic advancement, have been made since the end of WWII? Someone has raised the issue; “more people have perished at the hands of educated politicians in Africa, than has been the case at the hands of gangsters in the streets.” The question has remained primitively WHY? You would want to know whether the satiation for power and wealth justifies it all. Won’t it be reasonably easy to say, perhaps it does?” For the whole month of September 2012, four articles were published in a series in a Ghanaian daily, “The Chronicle,” that attempted to fill in “the missing dialogue.” Rejoinders from far and near scored some points as a sign of encouragement. Former President J.J. Rawlings was justifiably featured for having continuously been in the show since June 4th, 1979. His appearance at his home with the opposition leader, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on the 11th of October 2012, is definitely going to keep historians and analysts busy for a long time to come, but definitely analysts first. History, which in my opinion should be of interest to everybody, from the cook behind the oven to the theater for sophisticated procedures, where the brain surgeon may have reached the base of the brain, and could afford not the slightest non-gifted movement, if he should safeguard the sanctity and life of his patient, is unfortunately not deemed as important by even “the educated.” Anybody wants to study history? “History, they say, repeats itself, because, nobody listens.” Moments like the event featuring President J.J.R, and aspiring President N.N.A.A.A ought to be kept by all Ghanaians as “never-to-be-allowed to be forgotten.” Nobody is perfect, and we are all human! That applies to us all, as indeed, it does to the two gentlemen, who on the 11th of October 2012, got together and showed the nation THEY ARE CAPABLE OF BURYING THE HATCHET. The future was withheld as more important. For those of you who may have followed the events in the Soviet Union after Leon Trotsky had been eliminated, and the opponents, the Red Army and the White Army, had gotten the chance to meet to reconstruct ONE SOVIET UNION, THEY UNFORTUNATELY MISSED IT. That nation would have been standing today. Some of us must have been asking ourselves why we still weed using the cutlass and so many other nations don’t do that anymore, and they have advanced further than we have. Let’s keep the examples in camera, since we know them all. To me, whoever brought the two men together on that memorable day, to have them stop calling each other names like “tie-tia” and “the coup maker,” deserve medallions. We have antagonised each other within one nation for too long. The time may have come where the nation would benefit more from unity, the way Americans unite under the Stars and stripes, the evening of the 7th of November when the balloting stops. Someone has oftentimes said it openly that he started looking at Flt. Lt. J.J. Rawlings as a nobleman, when he lost the elections in 2000 AD, and “he gave in” to the winner, saying “the people have spoken!” There was an example somewhere else in the world, where a lady had won victory “per landslide,” and the Army, which had held power following a “coup d’état”, had stopped her from taking over. The country was onetime called Burma, and is now called Myanmar. According to this fellow citizen of ours, one could disregard the notion that external pressures must have turned former President J.J. R. The same was not the case in Kenya and Zimbabwe under similar circumstances. Those who adhere to the belief that Ghana was simply lucky would be entitled to their opinion. Someone who believes in luck asserts at the same time that “the harder he works, the more of luck he reaps.” There has not been another world war, since one ended on May 8th, 1945. Its marks are still visible in many places in the world, but where visitors stop and weep, are spots where victims perished in hundreds of thousands, or at times millions, like the Jews in Bergen Belsen and far places in the then Soviet Union. Jews, Germans, Russians, and Poles died for a cause that did not make sense. This is the way one “Ordinarius” in human anatomy expressed it at the John Gutenberg University Medical School in Mainz, Germany, in the 60s. He tried to impress it upon his young students, following the WWII, that “to forget it is the best way to have it not repeated.” The period 1933 till 1945 saw more suffering in Europe and the world than several hundred years put together. Hitler’s Cabinet included a “Propaganda Secretary”, by the name of Goebbels. When the clergy in Germany tried to weigh in with their voice, in the excesses of terror in the Hitler-Dictatorship, Goebbels, who had come from Jesuit tutelage, countered the critics this way: “Churchmen who meddle in politics should be reminded that their duty is life after death!” Goebbels committed suicide together with Hitler on the 28th of April, 1945. The hardships that accompanied everyday life in the post-independence period in the second half of the 20th Century had “seemingly justified” the brutality with which administration was meted out – The time for PEACEFULL REDRESS SEEMS RIPE NOW.
Kofi Dankyi Beeko, MD.
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