How we abuse the freedoms we have and take them for granted: So we had to wait for a virus to learn how to wash our hands and maintain proper hygiene standards after 62 years of being the first country south of the Sahara to gain independence?
So we had to wait for COVID-19 to learn how to disinfect our markets and Central Business Districts? Have we not had a plethora of reports of the state of Accra and how Ghana was once ranked second on the continent, behind war-torn Sudan, on open defecation?
Yet, we could not be bothered about taking all the necessary steps to get our act together by way of enforcing the laws on sanitation until COVID-19 came flexing its muscles and now forcing us to pay attention to the Veronica Bucket – an invention by a Ghanaian. Is it not a shame?
Years ago in Ghana, it was the status-quo to look out for one another, so we had sanitary inspectors, who came by our communities and homes, making sure that the best hygiene standards were kept.
Is it not obvious that there is more that unites us than divides us? Over the decades, we have allowed the freedom of our democracy to push us to pursue very parochial, partisan and sectarian interests, and allowed our national interest to be subsumed by our negative self-seeking interests.
So, we now know that a Ghanaian, Mrs Veronica Bekoe, invented the Veronica Bucket? I read in the Daily Graphic of Wednesday, April 1, 2020, that Mrs Veronica Bekoe is now pleading with the government of Ghana to help her patent her invention.
It is my prayer that she would not only be supported to patent her invention for Ghana’s name to fly high but also be decorated with a National Award.
“Necessity is the mother of all invention,” but never again must we wait for a virus to compel us to wash our hands, as well as adopt the best hygienic standards and when COVID-19 passes, never again must we take our personal and national hygiene matters for granted.
From a sociological functionalist perspective, this virus is going to teach us critical lessons for the good of our own human existence.
I congratulate President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his government on not panicking and being very cautious in its lockdown policies so they do not end up doing more harm than good. Former Presidents, Jerry John Rawlings, John Agyekum Kufuor and John Dramani Mahama are also playing commendable roles. COVID -19 is our common enemy; let us stay united to fight it!
The writer is the Founder, Atta-Mills Institute
Source: Daily Graphic
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