• All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

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Friday, December 31, 2010

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Thursday, December 16, 2010

In the interest of the children?

“This monument is dedicated to the children of Ghana. May they grow to be useful citizens in the fear of the Lord” – these words boldly engraved in a marbled Ghana map, underneath a sculpture of a breastfeeding mother, summarizes the import of establishing the Children’s Park in Kumasi. 
But today the child sucking milk on the lap of the mother has many things going through the tiny brains… does anyone care about my welfare? When will my park ever be brought back to life?

In spite of its proximity to the irritating hoots from vehicular traffic on the main Tech-Adum highway, the Children’s Park at Amakom is a serene greenly environment for social pleasure and leisure reading.

This 10.9 acre land was allotted for the multipurpose park in the late 1980s to serve the recreational needs of children in Kumasi and other parts of the Ashanti region.

But the investment, which includes a playground and a library, has been left to deteriorate over the past years, because soliciting public and government support to revive the centre has not been successful.

There have been several talks about private-public sector interest to revive the park, but surely this quest to support children’s development has never become a major priority.

The only Children’s Library in Kumasi has been left to deteriorate; the roofs are ripping off and the building is almost collapsing. Some other structures are serving the interest of religious groups and you wonder who might have been involved in renting these structures out???

Concerns have been raised about the state of the Children’s Park itself, which has been described as deplorable, as it has largely become a den for criminals, an abode of reptiles and an atmosphere for suicide freaks.

Some youth groups in the Kumasi metropolis, including the Nocturnal Fraternity of Luv Fm and the Adehye Leo Club of the KNUST have in times past undertaken clean-up exercises to improve the sanitation situation. But the total neglect of facilities at the park has rendered such exercises useless.

The resuscitation of this dilapidated facility still hangs in limbo and there are reports private developers have expressed interest to run the Park as a business but the concern is would this not be to the detriment of the original intent of using the park to develop the physical and mental wellbeing of the Ghanaian child?
My beloved family, brethren in the church and in the mosque, colleagues at work, friends on the street, fellow members of the human race living in Ghana, please lend me your ears; I sit behind my computer, wondering how I can appeal to your conscience. 

Just a moment ago, I was stuck in traffic close to the Children’s Park at Amakom and so many things happened within a flash. 

Hawkers bombarded the windows of vehicles in traffic to offer for sale one product or another – imagine the hazard of having to confront over-speeding drivers, abuse of commuters and the harm to health from the unfair weather. Unfortunately, majority of these are children!

Indeed private investment can be engaged to redevelop the Kumasi Children’s Park but the sustainable wellbeing of the child must never be slaughtered on the platter of a profit making venture!

Let the children grow and grow WELL to be good leaders of our society.

Kofi Adu Domfeh

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Poem: Two Worlds Apart

Moving through life’s unfavourable terrain
All looking depressive and dreary
Rising at odd hours in search of daily needs
Burning under the armpit of uncle sun to survive
Yet gaining not a survival allowance
Nothing getting any better, too frustrating
The least possession shared with friends and family
An exclusive responsibility that dry the body and soul
Could only manage hand to mouth affairs
Almost always in a state of emergency

Moving through life’s favourable times
All looking blissful and exciting
Rising at own hours in search of daily wants
Buzzing under brother breeze to seek living
Yet gathering more than a life-long wage
Everything getting the better, very fulfilling
The more possessed spent on women and drinks
An exclusive responsibility that waters the ego and status
Could always afford to spend as the will dictates
Almost always in a state of expansion

Why has it always been so?
Sometimes it is a result of greed and theft
Other times it is for the joy of oppression!
Yet some are born unfortunately depressed
And some achieve fruitful deeds in hard work
But it could also be a mental or physical disability
Or an unwillingness of the soul to be of help
Sheer laziness could be an answer
Many also do not reason nor plan positively
And some have hearts of mischief to the merciful

Could it also be through bloody deeds?
When the left hand is continually full of bribes
Integrity and uprightness become strong contestants
Surely, our two worlds are created by us
And the barrier can only by torn apart by us

It is only human to forget not the needy!
Beast-like to oppress for selfish personal gains
And wicked to despise the righteous
It all starts in the mind!
Just have the wish to live and not to let die.
© Kofi Adu Domfeh


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