By Maxwell Obiri-Yeboah.
A knife does not know who its master is. This is a proverb my Grandmother told me one early morning during my teenage years after I enquired of a dirty scenario which involved one boy I was forbidden to play with in our neighborhood.
As early as the cock crew, he was seen whacking his mother’s head to the wall and using abusive language against her publicly in an uncontrollably loud voice that, it fetched most of the villagers nearby to help calm the situation. The woman was by then bleeding profusely and calling the names of our neighbors for help.
After the situation came under control and our neighbors sent the woman to the hospital, I heard she incurred injuries in her skull that could lead to protracted ill conditions in the future. This woman according to gossips was not rearing her son properly and she now has a goon to deal with – a responsibility she will have to endure due to her lack of proper upbringing. This teenager was later apprehended by the police for further investigations.
It is very sad seeing the way certain bad habits by the youth in this country is being supported and hailed in the dark by the aged when we know we are to bend them down before they are too old to be straightened, yet because of our selfish gains, we are using words to embellish such acts and publicly defend them. One day, we will wake up only to realize what we have watered has grown horns and borne disgusting fruits all over.
It is sad to see some of our trusted institutions full of blemish. Growing up, the people in these institutions were given maximum respect due to exquisite services rendered with their love for the nation made manifest in their dedicated service.
They sung one song only: their love for the nation superseded all other individualistic interests. Today, it is evident that there are lots of punctures coming from their service delivery, bleaching the foundation of the nation.
One prominent evil gradually befalling this nation is the issue of vigilantism coming out of political parties and serving the parochial interest of the groups they represent. In the past few years, many of them have sprung up from the two prominent political parties.
However, after winning political power, majority of them find their way into certain confidential areas, only to hear them regrouping after coming into opposition. We are tickling ourselves and laughing as a people!
Unfortunately, our political leaders especially the legislative and executive arm of government when in opposition, do not see anything wrong with these condemnable actions.
These hypocritical leaders are given room to accommodate this nonsense persisting in their parties. They are happily seen mingling with these hooligans with evidence of photographs and videos circulating on media platforms.
Mr. Ade Coker, Chairman of the Greater Accra wing of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) blatantly said on United Television, an Accra based television station last month that, these vigilante group in the NDC (The Hawks) “are not the violent type”, yet they are formed for “extra security measures”.
In so doing, they will surely be given the necessary artillery to operate and rather get them prepared for the so-called extra security measures, which in actual sense results in acts of national security breaches, a school of thought would have it that he was lying to Ghanaians about their real colors.
This same figure condemned the formation of invisible and delta forces years back. Today, one would wonder why he is justifying the hatching of The Hawks and claiming they are non-violent. What a people we live with!
For now, I am only praying they do not turn against their own ‘masters’ one day, because it will be a bitterly-sweet experience to taste the brood of vipers they have turned the unemployed youth into.
These dangerous groups found in the political parties are believed in certain quarters to have something to do with the recent shooting spree by the police in Kumasi and in Accra where we have some perpetuators allegedly confirming they are linked to the national security.
Yes, they hastily pounce on anything: they are unprofessional, untamed and with a clouded judgment, they see the ordinary civilian as an enemy and want to get rid of anyone preventing them from doing what they want. This canker is sinking deep in this nation. This issue is sinking into the minds of our youth and may sooner or later beget an irreversible consequence if rapt attention is not given to it.
There is this adage that, ‘the branch of the tree that will pierce your eye, we do not chop off that portion, but rather, we uproot it’. This attitude must be strongly attended to and eradicated as soon as possible; I am convinced that it is linked to the widespread fire arms circulating in the system.
These heavily built men roam on our properties and call themselves land guards, rampantly impound and apprehend individuals and make themselves fake state security personnel who are exposed on daily basis in our cities.
A portion of our leaders
If we have no history as a nation to relate such dangerous activities to, it will be prudent to learn from the recent extremism the world is facing today in many countries. They did not just wake up in a day and started behaving the way they do.
It is such similar situations that graduated to the level we see now and after these guys seeing that they are neglected, they are now a problem the world is trying very hard to eradicate, but because of their deep and strong roots, it is difficult to uproot. They are very fortified and poised for action.
We are busily doing whatever it takes for money, fame and power. But as Stonebwoy said in one of his songs, what will we gain after successfully turning our own people against us; causing in-fighting due to some minor differences and make our land a terrible place to live? We have one Ghana and we owe it a duty to help protect and defend the good name of this land and to make it a better place today and for generations to come. It will be good for us to deal with the situation at this juncture than learn our lessons the hard way as some of our African countries did.