We seem to have carried impunities too far in this country. For a group calling itself the Association of Prostitutes to demand openly on air to be included in whatever sponsorships the government was giving to hundreds of Ghanaian cheerleaders to go to the World Cup in Brazil, is untenable.
A news item broadcast by one of the local language FM stations during its prime time news last Thursday afternoon was as shocking as it was embarrassing to listen to.
A well-articulated young woman was on air agitating for the inclusion of prostitutes in the official list of people the government was sending to the World Cup. According to the woman, who was described as the spokesperson for the association, going to Brazil would afford them the opportunity to ply their trade and earn some income.
Her argument was that if the government sponsored them to Brazil, they would go and work and bring home money to boost the ailing economy. Imagine the adult population of Ghanaians all asking to be sponsored by government to Brazil so they could go and make some extra money.
Where is the Association of Ghana Industries? The Ghana National Chamber of Commerce? Where is the Ministry of Tourism? Do all these and many more organisations not have something to offer Ghana’s economy by going to Brazil?
At first I dismissed her outright, thinking she was just a comic relief. However, with the time given to her on air and the kind of answers she was giving to the news presenter who did a good job of probing further, this woman’s answers came across as someone who had thought through what she was saying. I then took her serious.
So, whether a joke or not, why reduce and cheapen a serious event, albeit a game, such as the World Cup? A time when the world’s attention is going to be focused for the next one month on football until it is all over and done with?
Why would anyone want to trivialise our going to the 2014 FIFA World Cup at the expense of decency and good image of a country? If anything at all, one would rather have called for the inclusion of members of the Caterers’ Association or even the School Feeding caterers to go and cook for the hundreds of officially sponsored cheerleaders and others who planned going to Brazil at their own expense.
With Ghanaian caterers in Brazil, it could then have been arranged for local cooked foods to be sold in Cedis to the Ghanaians who patronised it so travellers would not have had the need to change their Cedis into Brazilian currency in these days of scarce foreign exchange.
At the same time, other nationals who sought to patronise the Ghanaian cuisine would have bought the local foods in foreign currency. That could even have done a lot to promote food tourism as well as earn the country some foreign exchange.
But all things aside, is prostitution not illegal in this country? Just a few days ago, we saw on television a police swoop on some prostitutes, including a pregnant woman, who operate around the Cantonments and Ridge areas in Accra soliciting for business. Also arrested were two men who were reportedly caught in the act.
The policeman who spoke to newsmen on the arrest confirmed that apart from the noise they were making in the neighbourhoods, and the nuisance they caused residents, prostitution was an offence under the laws of the country. It was for this reason that they were going to prosecute those arrested and put them before court.
One would recall that a few years back, the police made a similar swoop at a brothel at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra. How that case ended is yet to be known but I am certain that the leniency and the indecisive manner in which the law enforcement agencies deal with illegalities perpetrated by offenders certainly encourages impunity and lawlessness which have engulfed us in this country. Offenders of certain crimes believe they can get away with their crimes.
Otherwise, why is the Okada nuisance still thriving and causing headaches for motorists and pedestrians just weeks after we were told by the police that they have begun a clamp down on Okada?
With the prostitutes, elsewhere, the spokesperson for the prostitutes who was on radio would have been arrested even before she was done with her radio interview. She called in on a mobile phone, no doubt. A swift move by the law enforcers would have led to the identity of the woman.
No doubt the so-called Association of Prostitutes is an illegal entity. Many questions, indeed, come to play here and the cases of impunity and lawlessness get defined once again. The law enforcers definitely have a role to play in helping check the sanctity of the brand, Ghana. An Association of Prostitutes is an affront on the brand - Ghana.
Source: Vcky Wereko - [email protected]
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