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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Oppressors in our midst.

Once upon a time Ghana was under colonial rule.In fact,we were not called Ghana but The Gold Coast by our colonial masters.They ruled over us in every way possible-our educational system,our government,our economy, everything was controlled by them.Even though we were fully capable of managing our own affairs, we were not allowed to do so.And then one day,some illustrious sons of Ghana said,'Enough is Enough.We want to take care of our own affairs.Go back to your country and take care of yours'.So after quite a hectic struggle(including imprisonment!)they decided to let us go.Ghana became an independent country in 1957.
Now I wasn't there but I can just imagine the sense of frustration and helplessness and frustration those under colonial rule must have felt,knowing their rights and privileges were not being respected but being unable to do much about it.It took acts of civil disobedience and a few other demonstrations to make sure that our rights would be respected as a country.
It has been over 50 years since Ghana attained independence,and yet even today there are citizens of this country who feel this same sense of helplessness and frustration everyday.How?Some police officers have decided to turn themselves into 'colonial masters' and trample over the rights of the ordinary Ghanaian.I know not all police officers are corrupt,but the ones who are have become like lords who cannot be challenged into doing their jobs.
Let me give a classical example.When a policeman(or woman) demands for a bribe and the person in question refuses to give the bribe(or gives an inadequate amount) the person's license can be seized until the police officer gets what he/she wants.Why must it be this way?Why can't they just do their jobs?If they feel that the pay they are receiving is not enough,they should quit and look for jobs that give them the money they want to receive!After all,were they not hired and trained to protect us?Why must they then turn into our oppressors?!
The National Anthem has a line that goes like this:
'...and help us to resist oppressors' rule with all our will and might forevermore'.
As patriotic citizens I think that the next time a law enforcement officer tries to 'oppress' us by demanding for a bribe we should refuse(especially if the law is on our side).Even if we have broken the law,I think we should be willing to face the consequences of that rather than paying off the officers supposed to enforce the law.After all,no judge is going to throw you in jail for having an expired driver's license!We need to stop trying to find convenient ways of settling issues instead of going the right way.
As for the police officers involved in this act,I want them to remember the principle of sowing and reaping.If they don't know it,they should read their Bibles and understand that what goes around must surely come around!