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The White Powder Palaver!   
 
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25-Nov-2014  
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Ever heard the term ‘zongolese’? It’s a term I coined to describe persons who grew up in the zongo. I was born and bred in Niikrom, so I can beat my chest and say I’m a zongolese.

My growing up coincided with the rise in the use of narcotics in the zongos. As for cannabis, aka wee, it had been in use on a large scale by errant youth even before some of us were born.

I’ve personally witnessed the destructive nature of hard drugs. I’ve seen how youth with great potential had their future blown away by just a whiff of the dangerous substance. Others who had already made it in life saw their lives crumble before their very eyes. Kiki Gyan of Osibisa fame clearly comes to mind.

I vividly recall how a bloke I grew up with blew away his life when he fell for the alluring life of using hard drugs. He was a brilliant chap in school as well as a great football talent. He was on the verge of signing for Great Olympics when the effects of the drug took its toll on him. He now walks the streets of Niikrom begging for cowries and stealing whatever he can lay his hands on, in order to satisfy his drug addiction habits. I couldn’t help but shed tears when I saw him a few weeks back. “What a sad end to a great talent,” I exclaimed.

The above example is only one of the hundreds I’ve witnessed. Knowing the menacing effects of drugs across the globe, I always leap for joy when I hear of a drug arrest. And I know persons with conscience will do same.

I therefore could not hide my joy when news of the arrest of a Ghanaian woman, Ms Nayele Ametefe, at the Heathrow Airport in faraway London for possessing 12.5kg of cocaine broke out. The busted drug lady has several names, including Nayele Ametefe, but her real name, according to her childhood friends, is Ruby Appiah. She is also known to some people as Ruby Adu-Gyamfi, but commonly referred to as “Angel” as a nickname.

Her arrest has caused a lot of hubbub in this country and abroad, with the government trying to absolve itself of any blame or responsibility, especially with the allegation that Ruby was carrying a diplomatic passport during her arrest. For me, the talk about the lady having a diplomatic passport or being a native of my country is not so important. My concern is how she managed to outwit the scanners at the airport with such a huge amount of drugs. All other concerns are peripheral issues.

The statement by the Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) made the waters murkier. The statement sought to claim some credit by claiming they were in the know before the arrest was made in faraway London. The British High Commission has however refuted the claim. In other words, NACOB was simply throwing dust into our eyes. It has subsequently been revealed that the bag containing the 12.5kg of cocaine did not go through pre-departure check-up. Rather, someone carried the bag with the drug to her in the aircraft.

One is therefore tempted to ask why NACOB would deliberately try to throw dust into our eyes. Obviously, there was a security breach and NACOB has to answer for it.

It’s therefore pleasing to hear that the NACOB board has been dissolved. But that is not enough. The top man himself, Yaw Akrasi-Sarpong, should also be given the boot. I say so because there is evidence to show that the man believes more in barking than biting.

Do you remember the ‘I have the list’ saga? In 2011, we woke up one morning to be greeted by the news that the NACOB boss was in possession of a list which contained the names of drug barons in this country. My compatriots joined him and his charges to celebrate until someone asked where the list was. Instead of producing the list, he shamelessly showed an empty hand.

Just listen to what he said then: “I have the list but I will not name any names. I dare them to go to court if they have any problem. My work is not a politician’s work and no politician can force me to mention any names.”

Ha,ha,ha! I clearly remember saying his response was totally nebulous and infantile. Indeed, nobody coerced him to tell us he had any list in the first place; so how could we force him to mention any name.

It’s over three years since we heard of the list, and not even a fly has been arrested. If indeed there was any such list, then we expected him to act by bringing the culprits to book. After all, we pay him to bite, not bark.

You see, it is only in a country of jokers, such as ours, that you find people who believe in barking at the helm of affairs. And the result is clearly staring at us. For sure, the only reaction barking can evoke in any drug baron is laughter.

In countries where governance is taken seriously, serious security breaches such as in the case of Nayele (Ruby or whatever she calls herself) are not taken lightly at all. But hey, this is GYEEDALAND, where phantom ‘akomfem’ projects are praised by sitting Members of Parliament. So anything is possible.

Chai! Is this Dr Kwame Okro’s Asomdwekrom?

Hope to see you next week for another konkonsa, Deo volente!
 
 
Source: Agya Kwaku Ogboro/D-Guide
 
 

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