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FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF A “GHANABA”

The year 2013 began with a lot of misconceptions and fear about the unlucky number 13. Though much went on, a lot seem unachieved. Various drama unfolded, lives gained and some lost, heads of states and leaders died and some assigned into power. Indeed, there were many events that were displayed in the year all thanks to the Giver of life. However, much is needed to be done on the African continent and as a matter of fact, Ghana especially. A drive around town in the nation’s city leaves a lot of questions in one’s state of mind. In this article, I shall attempt to draw focus on a few assets that the nation is lacking.

                 Children playgrounds seem a thing of the past. It is rather appalling that children, the future leaders of the nation, do not have a place in the country prepared specially for them at vantage points. Just a few places have been marked as playgrounds for our children for instance, the Efua Sutherland Park in Accra. However, these places lack recreational facilities that may catch the eyes of the children who visit there. Also, before children could gain access to such places, they mostly have to pay which should not always be the case. A suitable place for children is also well established at the Accra Mall around the Tetteh Quarshie round- about but as usual and typical of Ghana, it is luxurious and rather expensive for parents and children to afford. So what can be done to ensure that children have fun and build their physical and mental well being in the coming years? I leave that to you and I to answer.

                Cinemas are places where good films are showcased for public viewing. It is indisputable that televisions and video electronic gadgets are in use in our homes. However, cinemas will be centers for socialization, outdooring and dissemination of good movies for audiences. Again, the well known cinema house in Ghana, Accra to be precise, is the Silver Bird Cinema located inside the Accra Mall. This place is the maiden name on most minds in the city of Accra. My questions then are, what about those in the rural areas? How many people can the Silver Bird house? Do patrons need to pay large sums to watch a movie which mostly lasts in a short period of time? Ghana needs to rise up in this aspect of entertainment and recreation for its people to enjoy. More cinemas must be built especially in rural areas to showcase educative and cultural movies to citizens, and to provide an avenue for socialization among people.

                Waste bins are an answer to our filthy state. Ghana is noted to be among the filthiest places in the world today. It is not surprising why this is so if you live in a country where little or no waste bins is found in town. Waste bins are seen mostly at homes where individuals have a sense of ownership for the rubbish they make and collect. The case is therefore different when you reach the towns and cities, even sometimes the communities lack waste bins at regular check points. Again, I ask myself why that is so. This condition leaves citizens no choice than to drop waste materials on the ground. The only accessible waste disposal joints are in heaps alongside roads, and are mostly stinky and unhygienic. I strongly believe that this could be resolved quickly to promote a healthy and filth-free environment in the coming year. Zoomlion is making great efforts but they could extend their litter bins into the towns and cities and markets where people mostly meet for transactions, travelling and other purposes.

                Community libraries would not be a bad idea at all. Lack of effective reading and comprehension is killing the current Ghanaian, specifically the child. Ask Ama, a primary three pupil to read a simple sentence and that may be a very big problem. This stems up to the fact that the necessary resources to improve the child’s reading is lacking. Story books and other reading materials are not much available for keen readers because they are either stuffed in the book shops for sale or are just sitting on shelves unannounced about their existence. What I mean is that, quality books must consistently be announced and reviewed to students during forums and conferences. Teachers can also deliberately recommend books such as the African Writer’s Series to their class during lessons. One library I still remember and hope to be checking up on is the George Padmore Library somewhere in Ridge, Accra (though I think it needs some restructuring and restocking). How many books are advertised through our media these days as compared to the liquors and condoms? Is that a mark of a nation seeking after a Better Ghana? Wonderfully, all the answers to our miseries are hidden in these books that we fail to read as citizens.

                Science laboratories and workshops will be another step to greatness. This can be set up at least in the capital towns of each region. By this, people can visit at their own convenience (especially science lovers) so that they can be trained in the practical application of science and experiments involving our physical world. The level and pace at which science is evolving is fast and must be tackled with a lot more experience and research. A resourceful science centre accessible by the large portion of the people may serve a good purpose. Timely workshops can also be set up to educate the people on the usefulness of science and its application in the country. A lot more hands can be pushed into our manufacturing, mining and agricultural industries with the introduction of this initiative. Also, more minds will be broadened to introduce great inventions and to explore unique opportunities in and around the nation.

                I could have gone on and on if only time was on my side. All these notwithstanding, we are making great efforts in other areas such as sports, education, tourism and culture and agricultural development that are highly commendable. A lot more work however needs to be done to relieve ourselves of the greater stress that we are lashed with currently. I take this time to congratulate Ghanaians on their peace and stability, Mr. President for his effortless governance, the Black stars on their remarkable performance, the Miss Ghana on her outstanding qualification, and you reading for your time and interest in this piece. I wish to continue some other time. Kindly leave your comments and opinions below.                

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