I hope you are doing well and getting into another gear for the festive season. As for me, I'm following Kaakyire Kwame Appiah's 24 song to the tee, I'll be going to Sikakrom to spend Christmas. Even though there is a credit crunch, I still have some money to purchase a ticket from one continent to the other and buy Christmas gifts. It's called 'saving by being chisel and hustle' . I'll be going to meet a Ghana I haven't seen in awhile, a Ghana that is gearing up for an election. That should be interesting. Ghana's election is going to a second round. The NPP and NDC would be going at it. One person who will not be going against anything is sure to be Samia Nkrumah. She's the new member of parliament for Jomoro.
Osagyefo, your daughter is a wonder o! Many people didn't give her a chance to wrest the parliamentary seat from Hon. Lee Ocran, and besides the NPP did have a candidate in the Jomoro race. Your name does do wonders! Samia's opponents were running against your name, the name that rings synonymous with Ghanaian independence. It could be likened to running a long-distance race against an Ethiopian or Kenyan. Maybe Jomoro voters were enthralled by the beauty of Samia Yaba in that ballot box. Fair-coloured woman with an Nkrumah last-name? Done deal. There was talk of her campaign being funded by the ruling NPP government. That didn't break her down. Her brother and your ‘prodigal son’, Sekou, fired shots at her from the camp of the NDC, but that didn't rattle her. I wish Sekou had run for MP too. Imagine if he run against Ellembelle Mugabe? Samia still trounced Ocran and is now the sole CPP parliamentarian.
Statistically women constitute the majority of the population. Whittle it down to lay mans terms and it means that Ghanaian woman are actually the driving force behind the economy, labour, civic duties and daily livelihood and most of all the majority of the electorate. However look closely and what you see is a male dominated society in which the men are more prominent and conspicuous.
The Ghanaian woman is like a Hindi goddess with multiple arms expected and capable of multi-tasking and balancing a host of things yet this same person seems to be relegated to the background.
One wonders if the actual voices of women are being heard in society and their problems addressed from the female perspective and not just that of men.
Forgive my insubordinate self for not keeping in touch. I know my letters have become occasional but it's not because you didn't send me that stimulus package. I will change. But as you can guess, there is an occasion. Coming up in two days is the election in Ghana. Ghana will be electing a new president as Traveller John steps down after two-terms. We know for sure there will be a change in who our first citizen is. Would there be a change in what our first citizen does? The world is looking at Ghana wondering if we'll pass another test in our democracy. We'll be praying for peace and a free and fair election.
Kwame, people are saying Ghanaians are too 'chill' for post-election violence in case some group of people feel there is a stolen verdict. Kenya and Zimbabwe cannot happen in Ghana they say. Some credit you for pushing unity amongst Ghanaians, overseeing the development of our education system which encouraged Ghanaians to leave their hometowns and settle in areas where their mother tongue was not spoken and children attending boarding schools all over the country. Kenya has done similar things so what is so different about Ghanaians? It's because we have seen what happened there and various campaigns have been waged to curtail any violence. I think the presidential candidates should have joined Junior Judas and Traveller John in a short video to preach peace as well. We haven't taken this thing too seriously.
I believe the power of every programming language lies in it's capacity to allow for an ease of expression of once thought explicitly
without laborious coding to solve a problem. Thus two candidates come to mind, Ruby and Python. This two languages would blow u'r mind off, b'cos
they tend to make you think intuitively as if they were your natural dialects.
Thus as an upcoming Ruby programmer I would be happy to see a growing community of Ruby and Python programmers. Anyone, interested in learning Ruby can join the Accra.rb google group.
It's been two weeks since my last post. I didn't see this silence coming when I started blogging. But what you should know is, I got stories, lots of stories. Last Thursday, I attended a meeting regarding a new NGO set-up to raise funds for students in one district in Kenya. One of the founders has been my Swahili tutor for two quarters. To show that I belonged, I started speaking the little Swahili I knew to whoever would listen. "Why are you studying Kiswahili?" This is the question other people at the meeting asked me. I responded "Marafiki zangu 'plenty' wanatoka Afrika Mashariki" which means 'a lot of my friends are from East Africa'. My Swahili tutor went on to say 'This guy is a Pan-Africanist'. That is a cool thing to hear given my love for Kwame Nkrumah, but is it really a cool description? How are Pan-Africanists seen today? People blamed Nkrumah for concentrating too much on other African countries and he eventually began to alienate his own people. Will being a Pan-Africanist thread me on the same path?
What are your thoughts about the government of Ghana embracing the Open Document Format (ODF) for public sector institutions; a process part of the "e-governance" policy.
Thus it mean that soon we will be having all Government Institution migrating to Open Source Application. Is this a step in the right direction, what do you think?
Happy Belated Birthday Osagyefo,
Kwame, some people in this world are old, but as for you, you are grown. What! 99 years! I am struggling with my quarter-life crisis and am dreading the next few years; I can't even imagine a mid-life crisis. Happy belated again sir, and may you find rest and sleep at the same side of the bed you slept on September 20th. Do find that spot again because you smiled at your fans. You must have smiled when you read the news about the national launch of your rejuvenated party's campaign for this year's election. The CPP is back, new, vibrant and attractive.
Nkrumahists like us cherish your birthday like other holidays in the Ghanaian calendar. Were you called the African Showboy due to the flamboyant parties you threw for your birthday? Were you called the African Showboy because of how you lavished cedis (when they were as good as dollars) on your friends and sympathizers? September 21st is remembered as your birthday but the chapter has been re-written, the 2008 version will go down as the day Paa Kwesi Nduom's CPP launched its national campaign with a rally for the ages and introduced the running mate in the race for the FlagStaff house, the site of the new Presidential Palace. Actually, the Presidential Palace is on hold due to a myriad of problems, so let's call this election the race to be the first citizen of Ghana. Shall we?
Blog entry culled from MightyAfrican's Blog
Many years ago, we used to have movie cinemas in Ghana. When movies were being advertised, they will say - showing at Rex Cinema, Roxy Cinema, among others. These days we don't hear that anymore. When that guy with the loud voice is promoting the new Agya Koo movie and the new Van Vicker flick, you are directed to the same stores that distribute Ghanaian music for you to buy the latest movies. There is everything wrong with this trend, but let's go back to see how we got here in the first place.
When I was in Presec around 2001, Ghanaian movies were up and coming. We had movies like Stab in the Dark, Stab in the Dark part 2, Ripples, Diabolo, You can't laugh, Who killed Nancy, among others. Some of our major actors even joined forces with Danny Glover and Omar Epps in 'Deadly Voyage'. We were encouraged by the productions. We had movie houses like Harry Laud Productions, Miracle Films, Venus Films, among others. Ghanaian movies were lauded, they were interesting and people actually wanted to watch and buy them.
Gone are the days when children would here the song “OBRA” on Sunday nights and quickly rush to find a place in front of the television to watch their favourite Ghanaian series Akan Drama.
Ghana has forgotten the contributions people like Addae, Osofo Dadzie, Maame Dokono, Kofi Abrantee, Super O.D., and Awaakye, Adwoa have made to the film and TV world.
The days when parents would take their children to Rex Cinema, Vision 66, or Orion Cinema to watch the new Ghanaian movie in town are over.
Now, people prefer to enjoy movies on DVDs or video cassette tapes in the comfort of their own homes.
A trip down memory lane proves that most of the Ghanaian movies made in our early years as an independent and developing country are far better than the movies being produced now.
The idea behind the GhanaConscious banner is to represent Ghanaian role models in various disciplines and careers that the youth of Ghana can look up to.
They are as follows
Ken Ofori Atta
Ken Ofori Atta is one of the most respected CEO's in Ghana. He was born in 1959 and grew up in the small town of Kibi, later moving to Accra where he went to Achimota School. He earned a BA in economics from Columbia University (1984) and an MBA from the Yale School of Management (1988).
Ken is the executive chairman and co-founder of Databank Financial Services Limited (Ghana), a full service non-bank financial institution established in 1990, in Ghana. Prior to founding Databank, Ken had worked at Morgan Stanley and Salomon Brothers in New York.
...Sounds on da ground and seens on the see-ins
The other day some friends (Ghanaian and Nigerian) and I were having a regular conversation that followed after watching a regular Nollywood movie. The conversation turned to discussing other things; African music, high school boarding house experiences, education systems, studying for PhDs and hurrying up Masters degrees, gold diggers, wastemen, etc. Eventually, we ended up talking about African leaders, politics and what we needed to do as Africans to develop. The latter issues have been on my mind a lot lately. The emergence of Obama has caused me to think even more about the issue of leadership. It has me dreaming of Kwame Nkrumah. At this point in Africa's lives, it needs visionary leaders, inspirational figures, uniting heads, iron men, super men, super heroes. Who will save us? Wanlov da Kuborlor thinks a 'Supa Chompia' will, and even describes his super powers in his song of the same title.
A lot has happened since I last wrote to you. Chief among them, the Beijing Olympics just ended over the weekend. I share in your disappointment; our beloved country failed to win a single medal. Either our athletes are not good enough to earn our national anthem some airtime on the world stage or we are not investing enough in various sports disciplines so that we can be counted amongst countries with medals. We went there to make up the numbers. But we didn't even have the numbers - our contingent was less than a score (Ha, always wanted to use this expression). In the meantime, our current president handed out a ton of medals recently to about 200 people who have served our nation in various ways. Each 18 carat gold medal cost 33,000 pounds. Here's a good debate Kwame: should we have spent this gold medallion money on our athletes instead to save face at the Olympics? Are the Olympics that important or we should rather cherish celebrating our national heroes?
Here comes my first non-museke/music related blog post, say yay! Post is from my blog (that I just started) - Why so serious - blogs of a MighTy African
The Olympics is totally the biggest sporting event. Some may argue for the World Cup, but even though the Mundial is grand and is centered around the passion of the nation (aka football), all other sports have some different fans who pay attention to the Olympics. For instance, I have a couple of friends who could care less about football but will stop work to watch Michael Phelps and the 100 metre sprint.
I didn't catch the opening ceremony, it's always the greatest spectacle of celebration. Ghana's contingent was very small and they were clad in kente. I've heard people complaining about the choice of attire, about how kente has been accepted by the greater Black community and we can't claim it anymore. Nonsense! People should know we are the originators! :-) The Ghanaian contingent held their own, you can't miss us, we are colourful and we stand out.
How well do you think new technology can be implemented in Ghana? Waiting for new gurus to emerge? You can be part of the design team. Mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
What do you think hampers the patronage of Open Source in Ghana?