So I was sitting in a bus on my way to Tarkwa this morning and I kept seeing ants all over; they were on my bag, on my shirt and even on my skin and, sometimes, in pairs or more too. This made killing them over and over again seem a fruitless endeavour but the clueless me just kept on massacring this ant army post each time thinking this is probably the last one. In my head, I kept “blasting” the bus driver and the mate, after each kill, for grooming these tiny predators in their vehicle and made a mental note to avoid them when returning to my city.
After my activities here, an experience which deserves another article on its own, whilst in a taxi, I realized ants were still displaying on my backpack…okay, now where are these guys coming from, I wondered. I had finally had enough of seeing ants on my backpack and decided to turn all “Sherlock Holmes” in the taxi. Well, long story short, I had unknowingly been breeding ants in my bag all this while. Now, I’m sitting in this taxi, mad and furious at the same time (if possible) at this discovery and I can’t help but wonder whose fault it is…
You see, I should have guessed this much earlier as for some time now, whenever I put on my backpack, I saw these little ants all over me and, of course, they always left behind painful stings and swellings but I had always assumed I was sitting at the wrong places and had not put it all together till today (and I’m supposed to be genius). Turns out, in one of the side pockets of my backpack was an unfinished sachet of snacks: needless to say, it was now the comfortable apartment for an army of ants…Again, I sit here wondering about who to blame for this mess…
So why am I confused as to who is to blame?
Well, off head, it’s easy to say it’s my fault and that I should learn to be clean-conscious…point taken BUT, there’s a reason why that snack pack ended up in my bag and nowhere else…
Not too long ago, our nation’s capital was in the news for all the wrong reasons again; the whole place got flooded by a few hours of rainfall and the rhetoric’s of last year’s flooding were repeated for our consumption since, of course, we’re a gullible, “peaceful and understanding” citizenry. After last year’s disaster and the bold declarations of Africa’s “BEST MAYOR” (who gives these awards sef?), the last thing we were expecting was for the EXACT SAME PLACES to get flooded yet again but yeah, it did happen!!
And yeah, it was so predictable that a Canadian who has never visited the country just through a little online research betted the flooding would re-occur this year and won a whopping 10,000 dollars as a result.
Whilst some of us ended up politicizing it, some ‘enlightened souls’ also chose to blame the citizenry as always…“we are unclean, not neat, we eat and drop the wrappers, and so on”, they said but, no one really went to the bottom of the issue…not really surprised that didn’t happen but I was kinda hoping it did.
Before I go to further, let me share an experience a visiting pastor from the USA recently shared with my congregation; so the man came to Ghana with the son and bought the young boy a sachet of Fan-Yogo on a trip to their village. Some days after returning to Accra, the lad’s mum decided to wash his stuff and went through his pockets and alas, there was the sachet nicely folded in there. She, seemingly surprised by this un-American act of putting waste in your pocket, queried the son on why he would do so since that could have bred ants (as in my case). The kid innocently responded, “mum, I’m sorry but I couldn’t find any dustbins where we were…I did search frantically but there simply was nowhere to put it and I was also uncomfortable about dropping it on the ground – I know better – so I decided to keep it and put it in a bin when we got back but obviously it escaped me.”
My question is, why did the kid have to be put in such a situation in the first place?
And do we seriously expect that everyone in this country will be like this kid??
So why do we put people in that position then in the first place?
Walking around in any of our major cities, one thing is conspicuously missing: DUSTBINS!!!
You can walk for miles and not meet a single dustbin yet the citizen is to blame for the uncleanliness and gathering of rubbish in the land??
Of course, I wish everyone had the IQ, moral capacity and decency of the young man (or myself) but why tempt people just to see them fail in the first place?
How can a nation such as ours, in this day and age, be so lacking in terms of common dustbins?
Why should it be so difficult to find dustbins every five (5) metres? Why should it be so impossible to find a place to drop rubbish when in the city?
And even in the rare occasion of there being one somewhere, it is almost always full and overloaded and seldom emptied…why???
Whose job is it to ensure these measures are in place and working?
The elected or appointed officials OR the citizenry?
Ok…so If it’s my job to buy the dustbins for Market Circle…oya, tell me make a buy them na? If not, then why are you not doing your job, Oga MCE/DCE…yes, you! Or una prefer Mayor?
Why do we always have to wait for calamities to then react and try to patch things up?
Why can’t we have proactive leaders for once?
I watched my city centre flood last year and that succeeded in the getting the authorities to get into action; they cleaned the choked gutters but that’s where it ended…THERE ARE STILL NO DUSTBINS ANYWHERE IN THE CITY OF TAKORADI…BELIEVE ME, I HAVE ALSO SEARCHED FRANTICALLY!!!
They forget that not everyone would risk breeding ants like me and not everyone will feel guilty about dropping the plastic bag on the ground…some will even justify it by saying the city should have provided bins so WHY PUT THEM IN THIS POSITION IN THE FIRST PLACE?
Government, for show, instituted a clean-up weekend every month but like every political gimmick, this has failed miserably and, in my view, even worsened the case…WHAT IS WRONG WITH US AS A NATION?
I saw lots of the garbage taken out of the gutters return to them because no one and I repeat NO ONE CAME FOR THEM weeks after being collected. So mostly, it was a garbage out, garbage back in routine every month…WHY?
Are we waiting for another June 3rd disaster so that some pot-bellied official would give us more empty speeches?
Are we gonna remain a mocked folk internationally?
Aren’t we tired of still having cholera outbreaks and deaths in this 21st century?
Aren’t we tired of the malaria outbreaks and deaths already?
Dear Ghanaian, when are we gonna hold our leaders accountable for these simple things?
When are we gonna demand that enough is indeed enough and that our nation must work starting from the simple things?
When am I gonna see dustbins at every turn in my city or is that too much to ask for?
Where is our outrage as a people? How many more must die for the simple things to be done?
Today, I ask that we demand action from our leaders…let’s start with DUSTBINS…this country needs them, our cities need them…and they MUST be provided!!!
I’ve seen youth groups spring up attempting to clean up our cities; groups like Pilolo in Takoradi but what use are their efforts if the cities cannot provide simple amenities like dustbins every five metres?
A wise man once said that one cannot change what one considers to be normal so I’m guessing I’M TIRED OF KILLING ANTS IN MY BAG…I’M TIRED OF FOLDING YOGHURT WRAPPERS AND PUTTING THEM IN MY POCKET…I’M TIRED OF HOLDING EMPTY DRINK BOTTLES WHILST WALKING THROUGH TOWN LIKE SOME HOMELESS DUDE!!!
WHO IS HOLDING OUR DUSTBINS HOSTAGE?
GHANA MUST WORK!!!
ARISE GHANA YOUTH FOR YOUR COUNTRY…LET US DEMAND FOR CHANGE!!!
GHANAIAN YOUTH, WHERE IS YOUR OUTRAGE??
ARE WE WAITING FOR ANOTHER FLOOD SO WE LAMENT ON SOCIAL MEDIA?
AREN’T WE TIRED OF LOSING YOUNG SOULS TO SENSELESS FLOODS?
ARE WE WAITING FOR THE LEADERS TO PLAY POLITICS WITH COMMON DUSTBINS TOO?
OH GHANA, ME MAN, PLEASE RELEASE OUR DUSTBINS…
I’M TIRED OF KILLING ANTS!!!