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18.03.2009 Feature Article

My Rant- 'Beef' with Joy FM

By Eyram
My Rant- 'Beef' with Joy FM

I have a stong 'beef' (a term used more commonly to mean a 'grudge') with Joy FM and I have decided that it's no use keeping it to myself. So in this open letter about Joy FM, my once 'favoritest' radio station, I'll begin to explain why I think Joy FM is losing its plot and listeners like me.

Don't get me wrong, I did not say I don't listen to Joy at all anymore, I just dont listen to it as much. I still have a soft spot for Ato and thoroughly enJoy Mr. Black, but now I just can't stand the Super Morning Show after 7am and sometimes The News. Here's why...

It's too much POLITICS. (Yes I'm sure it was pretty obvious where I was leading up to.) Politics when I wake up, go to work, eat and return home. It's just become unfortunate because I believe there are much more things to discuss and push forward than mere talk of what Atta Akyea did at the vetting committee today. Somehow we seem to be still stuck in the euphoria of the elections. I guess it must be withdrawal syptoms because no one seems to be getting on with the business of the day- which in my opinion, is picking this country up and setting it well and truly on the path to real development. Development I can see.

Has Joy FM somehow failed to notice the filth and stench engulfing our city, or am I the only one who seems to feel suffocated by the amount of rubbish decorating our roads and neighbourhood? Really, if Joy were to put in half as much effort as they did to the peace campaign during the elections into campaigning against the flippant tossing of rubbish left, right and everywhere in the city, I do believe we would be on the right path to somewhere good. Just consider the amount of influence that the station has- with all their affiliate stations. Can you imagine the effect, if you were constantly told that dropping that 'pure water' bag on the floor was wrong? Maybe you may not care but I can tell you that after some time of that kind of positive bombardment, even the most die hard 'litterers' would hesitate before dropping that plastic. As a change element, Joy can take to task those same politicians they are always in touch with, to do something about the pollution in the city-and I'm not talking about the NDC or the NPP. For all I care, they may very well be the same. The station can continously probe them about their plans for clearing and managing the filth.

Joy can set the agenda for a better Ghana. After all, they do set the agenda for the nation with all their debate about how the ex-president acquired his new office and how many cars are not being returned. Yes we should maintain a sane government system, but tell me, what do I care about the ex-presidents' new office and who said what, when I can't walk through circle without some nasty black bag wrapping my ankles lovingly? - and i say that with all sarcasm. Frankly those plastic bags should be banned, period. Before we had plastic/polythene we carried our stuff. Necessity breeds invention, im sure we'll come up with a better alternative (go back to the cane baskets and calico bags perhaps?)

Joy FM, please do not leave it to Zoomlion who are not only overstretched in their capacity but also quite incapable, if u ask me, of clearing this city without more help. What we need is a change in attitudes and that is why I think the station is losing the plot. They can, and must lead that change. They can tell us to keep our rubbish in our pockets until we get a bin, tell the government to provide those bins (and empty them constantly, mind you), tell us its not fashionable for a person to spit in public, tell us to sweep in front of our shops, (zoomlion can't be everywhere at once), tell people not to pretend to de-silt gutters only to leave the rubbish by the side to fall back in again. Joy FM can tell government (NDC, NPP) to get their acts together and spend a little, or much of our monies in closing the drains and covering the gutters to provide people with less of an opportunity to dump rubbish in them. Believe me, I feel very strongly about this. Joy FM can tell the government to set up policies that WORK and can be implemented! What happened to those stories of setting up sanitation police? Where have the health and sanitation inspectors disappeared to? Once established and given enough mandate to arrest and fine filthy people who drop rubbish and live in filth, i know something positive just might result. Ghanaians are beyond the point of a rare mention of keeping their surroundings clean, they need it to be hammered into their craniums and forced to follow. In this respect, people have taken for granted the liberty we so freely enJoy. I say more soldiers on the road to restore sanity. The indiscipline is too much-and that brings me to my second issue that Joy FM should be working on instead of bleeding our ears with politics. Give me a minute and I ll sip some water


Part II

I am a driver, not a commercial one but a road user nonetheless who is totally consumed by road rage every single time, I step into a car. (I'm sorry but that's my weakness, some drivers really deserve the middle finger') How much worse can recklessness on our roads get? A Nigerian friend who spent her growing years in Ghana told me this Christmas how she now dreads driving in Ghana when on holiday because suddenly we seem to be driving like Nigerians. (That does not inspire visions of sobriety and orderliness and sure as hell scares me, knowing the reputation Nigerian roads have.) Back to my issue of liberty taken for granted, everyone just does what they feel they can, on our roads! The least said about the trotros and taxis the better.

Joy FM has mentioned the recent increased carnage on our roads and the hawkers crushed under a truck (hawkers are a safety hazard and should be cleared of the street even though I also buy from them.), but what have they done as a socially responsible station to advocate for safer driving and respect of traffic rules? They have the power, Joy FM; hound the Ministry of Transportation till we see something happening.

I really dont mind the pot holes, it can be fun dodging them but no, no, no, to that trotro driver who keeps driving on the shoulder and trying to bully his way in front of me. I never give way and dare you hit my car. (If you see a pretty young lady driver in a car in a move-I-move, side-by-side tussle with an errant trotro, know it's me. I just hate the way people feel it's alright to cut in without asking and the way commercial vehicles including the Metro Mass Transit buses (who are even worse culprits) stop indiscriminately, forcing you to grind your brakes. Do the people who work at Joy not drive to work and are they not stressed by the time they get to work or home?

Just this morning I could have almost gotten out of my car to hug the policeman conducting traffic at the Tetteh Quarshie Interchange. Were he not there, imagine the murder! Really, since when did driving on the shoulder become so fashionable? Even obroni's (shame on them, do they do that where they come from?) are seen doing it. Please Joy, you can talk about how we are all dying slowly, with the old vehicles spewing black smoke into our lungs. We are better than that and should not accept buses older than 10 years that no one wants. I expect the station to push for these things to be banned (Those who import and use them can find a little more expensive alternatives, ever heard of tough love?') and for DVLA to be stricter on the type of drivers allowed on our roads. If for anything at all, I suggest that a proper driving campaign be instituted with tv and radio adverts teaching the meaning of road signs and reminding everyone of the right thing to do. When I was a child I remember vividly the advert about crossing the road, 'always cross at the zebra crossing, (I dont see any around, hardly any road markings too.) hold hands, and look left, right and left again. Teach people to use those crossings instead of just crossing the road indiscriminately.

Joy FM's advocacy role in the country as the leading station is further to be appreciated, they should do something first and others will follow. Joy, when you speak, the politicians listen and since you speak for us the people, please say what WE want you to say. We are tired of the filth and indiscipline in our country. Lead us to civilised days. I and anyone else, who agrees with me, promise to listen to the Super Morning Show if you do.
Thanks

Credit: Eyram [Email: [email protected]]
PO BOX GP 4692
ACCRA.

Eyram
Eyram, © 2009

This author has authored 1 publications on Modern Ghana. Author column: Eyram

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