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21.12.2005 Regional News

Kumawu Hit By A Fast Spreading Deadly Cholera Epidemic

By Rockson Adofo (London)
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Kumawu has once again become a victim to a ravaging fatal cholera outbreak, claiming precious and innocent lives on a daily basis since November. One wonders why Kumawu is never spared of the periodic outbreaks of cholera in Ghana. Though I had withdrawn into my cave or better said, recoiled into my shell as does the tortoise, and had intended to stay a bit longer, brooding over the pain of the unexpected death of my Mum, I could hardly continue living in the self-healing psychological cocoon in which I am intentionally deeply embedded while Kumawu is being tormented by cholera. I have to come out, not only to break my silence, but to help find solutions to eradicate the deadly disease once and for all.

The answers are not far fetched. The land of once a historic noble King of the Ashantis, Nana Tweneboa Koduah, and fearless warriors, has for the recent decades been neglected through deliberate incompetence, mismanagement of resources, selfishness, myopism and sheer non-chalance by those entrusted with the welfare and well-being of the town and its inhabitants, quite an excruciating occurrence indeed. Right from the traditional Chief, the sub-chiefs through to the Member of Parliament and the District Chief Officers, for the fact of hailing from Kumawu are blameable. They have ignored the responsibilities of their offices, that of being servants to the people, but have become lords over them, ignominiously pursuing their stomach and personal comforts and egoistic interests, all in the face of visible lack of the basic non-luxurious necessities of life.

The outbreak of cholera has to do with lack of hygiene exhibited by the environment and the people; and Kumawu is a classical example hence, the periodic visitation of cholera.Kumawu for almost three decades has had no treated running tap water but people have to fetch from disease-infested streams miles away from the town. Kumawu, in some areas, like Hyiawu, have no public or home toilets, and the town as a whole has insufficient public toilets. Where and how do the people ease themselves or attend to the nature's call especially, at night? Your guess is as good as mine. These are the main causes of the rampant recurrences of the mentioned dreadful disease, but what do our selected or elected leaders do about it to arrest the situation for good. "NOTHING", I say. What a shame?

I am not going to apportion blames but reserve it for another time. We the ordinary citizens of Kumawu both inside and in Diaspora are much equally guilty of the continuous periodic cholera occurrences. We have not the love of the town and the people at heart so fail to help with solutions to the staring problems faced by Kumawu .We are so apathetic when it comes to the discussion of anything about getting Kumawu out of her present predicament and possibilities of her development thrust.

I suggest as immediate solution, all the Kumawu Diasporas getting cholera drugs or medication both preventive and cure, to their relations and loved ones at home .All the Kumawu citizens abroad should please send medication through their various Kumawu Unions to the Kumawu Hospital, to cater for the greater needs of anyone that falls victim to the disease and other health related ailments as the medium term solution. For the long term, we should elect or select responsible people for the post of traditional Chief and sub-chiefs, Member of Parliament, District Chief Executives and any public office having to do with the governance of Kumawu. We need people with organisational qualities, non "gluttonous debauch", ready to be of service to the people and serve, full of vision and good intentions backed by practicalities leading into their realisation, to hold public offices in Kumawu, be they traditional or otherwise. We have to get the problems of the public places of convenience and the water solved through self-help projects, all hands on deck.

This is a challenge thrown to all those Kumawuman citizens aspiring to court the support of the people to winning any future public post. They should let us see their practical love and organisational abilities right from this cholera incident or they should forget about their dreams as the people would no more let themselves be exploited for simplistic slogans. This is a particularly an open challenge to one Mr. Alex Adomako Mensah, resident in London but dreams to unseat the MP for the Kumawu Constituency come any future Parliamentary elections. He cannot win sitting in the comfort of his London apartment if he fails to help in a way or the other, to fighting this menacing cholera.

What are the functions of our "Nkosuohene" (Development Chief) if he cannot initiate developments through communal organizations of the people in what are called self-help projects? I have never heard of him or seen him ever contribute or initiate any such thing of all his years comfortably seated in that chair. What a farce? Why then the creation of that post in the first place? Kumawu is sick and tired of non-performing leaders. Pure and simple!

I am appealing through this medium to all the Kumawu citizens irrespective of their positions, status, age and place of current residence, to come to the aid of Kumawu in this critical time of cholera devastation.

I also seize the opportunity to express my family's heartfelt appreciation of condolences to us in various manifestations, financial, physical, and spiritual, by sympathisers of all categories, on the death, burial and funeral of our mother AWO SERWAAH of ever cherished memory, in September 2005.All those who accompanied us home, from their various Diaspora abodes to Kumawu are very much thanked.

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