Beloved Capital

Dear Nii Kpakpo,

You were right in saying that as for the dumsor I should not even start talking about it because it was going to get worse. You said it in your last reply and I really thought you were kidding 8684584 had to recognize it myself.

Kpakpo, you know how when we were growing up and we went to high school or visit people outside Accra or even went on programs outside Accra when we were coming back the myriad of city lights made you realize that no matter how long your journey was you had reached home? The city lights were an indication that this was the capital Accra and you were one of the people who lived in it. That alone was a sense of pride.

Recently  I had to come attend the #TechCamp West Africa and to be there you know I only travel at night by bus. It was an uneventful ride except with the usual cacophony of the sleeping snoring choir that I always find amusing. Chale! I should be a snoring maestro someday if decide to record all those snores, even for just one journey, and then put some beats on it from the Bakabri Audio Lab.

It was on these night trips that I realized that people’s snores can change tone and pitch every twenty or so minutes depending on the atmosphere and surroundings. There is a different tone when the air-conditioning is on and another when it’s off. There is one for a bumpy road and another for a smooth road. And Kpakpo, when the car is travelling very fast and hits one of those flat rump bumps, there is a sharp rise in pitch as if in protest even though the person is asleep.

Well that’s not the focus of this letter.

Nii Kpakpo Thompson, I travel by night because there is less to see and since people are sleeping less stoppages. It is usually a smooth ride apart from one or two times when I’ve been unfortunate to join buses with car trouble. On one of those times some guy transporting goats had two goats run into the night in the middle of nowhere. Who was gonna chase and catch those goats after midnight when we didn’t even know where we were. He just let it go and counted his losses. Suffice it to say he didn’t talk to anybody the rest of the way when the bus was fixed and he was wide eyed throughout the journey. Not a wink did he sleep.

So I’m heading to Accra by bus at night and the bus is fast so I just saw some familiar towns pass by. Before long the bus was at the Daboro toll booth and that is the only thing that made me realize we had gotten to Accra.  Trust me Kpakpo if the toll boot wasn’t lighted (this government does know how to collect its money) I wouldn’t have even realized we were in Accra.

Where were the city lights? All the way from Medie, Toman, Amasaman, Pokuase there was total darkness as far as the eye could see. It was only at Ofankor after John Teye that there were lights and even that you could observe that parts of the towns were off.

What happened to the Accra that we were proud of coming back to. To the Accra with plenty city lights. The Accra which we used to tease villagers with that they had never seen so many lights.
What happened to our Accra??


Kpakpo! I was so hurt the taxi driver didn’t understand and taking me for a Johnny Just Come (because I came off a Tamale bus) he was charging me three times regular price and laughing about it with his colleague taxi drivers in the local Ga language.

I was too hurt and angry at the loss of my childhood homestead the care.

It was so sad that the tables have turned now. Now the villagers come from the lights and meet the darkness in Accra and as if by design people’s hearts in Accra have become just as dark too. They are only kind for 12 hours (if you’re lucky) and then pretty mean the next 24hours just like the power schedule. If you’re lucky and you catch a break then it means the schedule hasn’t been followed religiously and that doesn’t surprise anybody anymore.

Nii Kpakpo, till I left the capital, I slept for 4 nights in a row in darkness. The schedules are shit.  Pardon my Portuguese.

If you want to measure the indignation of the light situation in my area all you have to do is monitor my neighbor Prosper Afuti’s Facebook status every night and you’d be amazed the kinda comments he gets when he asks the Electricity Company related to his lights. But well, like everybody else he just complains but what can he do really than to adjust to it accordingly. 

Any3mi, I have now come back to the savanna and I’m hearing stories about one Kwesi Pratt coming into town and having been given the savanna hospitality then goes back south to Accra to blab that we are all Ghanaians and if there is national suffering we should all suffer the same and he doesn’t understand why there shouldn’t be load shedding up here in the savanna.

From what I heard the savanna junta is pretty pissed and I don’t think our man can step foot anywhere here again and expect the kinda hospitality he had the first time. The hospitality has turned to hostility and it’s directed at him since now lights go off 12hours two times a week in all areas in Tamale.

Well if what they’re saying is true then maybe Uncle Kwesididn’t do well because in sharing the national cake, you guys in the south get way more than we do up here and so you should also take the greater suffering. Moreover there are less industries here so when are we sharing /shedding the load with.

Give us our lights!!

Anyways, it’s good to be back. The summit was a success and as soon as I got down from the taxi to get into the house my seven alarm clocks went off as if on cue to welcome me back. Back in Accra, there was pretty much no disturbance because there was no electricity to use the public address system to call the faithful to worship. It was only by voice and even with me just 100meters away it was pretty faint.

Kpakpo, as I sit on the loo contemplating the future of this country. I hope the odikro is doing the same and getting more grey hair from the exercise. I’ve said my piece. Hope is the only thing keeping us but at the rate we’re going we should expect anything at the end of the tunnel because the lights might not be on if it’s still in the hands of the Electricity Company of Ghana.

Eish!! I almost forgot. Our black stars did pretty well and just when we wrote them off they almost brought home the cup we haven’t seen in almost 30years. And it was a case of history repeating itself this time like we say in tennis “advantage Ghana!”  That younger Ayew boy will go places. He’s passionate about being patriotic not like some of the others we know.

Well, lots to Talk about but don’t want to bore you.  Let me keep some of the juice (is there any) and you’ll hear from me later.
Till then take care of you for me and run things.

Your Cousin in Law
Savannah Boy


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