Message to the Extraordinary Ghanaian

I believe, that some things cannot be taught. These things lie dormant in the hearts and minds of some people, waiting for the right moment to sprout.

These things, one is simply either born with or not.

         Things like that ability to face obstacles and persevere over and over again till victory          is won…

         Things like the strength to pick yourself up after you’ve been trampled on over and              over again till victory is won…

         Things like compassion, and unconditional love for your fellow human being. To                  sacrifice your life, happiness, family bonds,etc just to see another person be                          comfortable/free/healthy/happy..

No, these things cannot be taught. There would be a million Gandhis, Nkrumahs, Mandelas, Sergeant Adjeteys… a million Jesus Christs… but there aren’t. Alas, ordinary people greatly outnumber the extraordinary.

So one person, or some people, with (or with a fraction of) the emotional and mental fortitude of these people should rise up and do something. So the ordinary people follow.

They always follow.

          I’m writing to the extraordinary person, You know yourself. You know what you’ve overcome. You know how hard you’ve worked and how much you’ve achieved in spite of, No, ESPECIALLY because of the odds stacked against you.  

          I write to you because Ghana really needs you right now. We have about 20 million constant complainers, about 10 million who have given up on Ghana and are looking for a way out (with regular Christmas holiday trips back home of course). There are about 18 million people who know that the government is to blame for our troubles and KNOW that there’s nothing we can do because we are all doomed. We’ve got 21 million people who just want to carve a comfortable life for themselves and their families and can’t be bothered what happens to the rest of the country. We’ve got 22 million who are really really lazy. Oh, and the five million who pretend to care.

           I write because I know you have drive, and talents that you can use to help create change. If you’re having one of those days where you feel like you’ve bitten off more than you can chew, or that saving the world is not easy at all… if you’re feeling frustrated because there’s a person or a system somewhere trying to make it hard for you to do something, I write to tell you not to give up, take a break, remember why you’re here. Remember your dreams, and try again.

          I write to tell you that you’re not alone, that there are others like you who want change too. Others like you who want Ghana to work. If you need help finding them, ask me, I’ll show you.

I write to tell you that what you’re doing is not too small.

If you’re a teacher working hard to improve the lives of your students, helping that bright student who needs just a little push, keep doing it.

If you’re a scientist, pursuing projects that your supervisor told you to drop because there’s no funding, or because it’s impossible, keep doing it.

If you’re working in an institution where it seems you’re the only one refusing to take bribes, come late to work, close early, or skip work anyhow, keep doing it.


If you’re a lawyer, doing pro bono work, taking the time on rickety troski rides to educate your fellow passengers and reducing the reach of the party propaganda machinery, keep doing it.

If you’re doing honest business, paying your taxes, providing quality products and good service, aiming for excellence, keep doing it.

If you’re a student, making an effort to educate yourself instead of waiting for your teacher to lecture you, or for the government to change the educational system, keep doing it.

If you’re an artist, making art to uplift the soul, to inform, to educate, keep doing it.

If you’re an architect, turning away lucrative jobs because you’re doing pro bono work for a village or NGO somewhere, keep doing it.

If you’re a social entrepreneur, making Ghana better one step at a time, keep doing it.

If you’re a doctor, working hard even though your colleagues are “doing locum” because there’s a strike, keep doing it.

If you’re volunteering for good causes, spending your own time, money, energy… keep doing it.

If you’re a writer, commenting on society, sharing your opinions, even when they seem dangerous, keep doing it.

If you’re a reader, oh if you’re a reader! Keep doing it.


6 thoughts on “Message to the Extraordinary Ghanaian

  1. “If you’re a writer, commenting on society, sharing your opinions, even when they seem dangerous, keep doing it.”

    Thank you. This spoke to me and the SCRAP SHORT TERM TOURIST VISAS TO GHANA Facebook group campaign I initiated to promote international leisure tourism being undermined by strict, prohibitive visa requirements. NOT GETTING ANYWHERE FAST, BUT I EXPECTED THAT, AND WE MOTOR ON.

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