There is a news report widely circulating on many Ghanaian media websites in which “Prophet” Emmanuel Badu Kobi, the self-besieged founder and leader of the charismatic religious organization by the name of Glorious Wave Church International, or International Church, is said to be vowing to kill all his enemies before the close of 2019 (See “Badu Kobi Threatens to Kill His Enemies by the End of 2019” GhPage.com / Ghanaweb.com 8/1/19). Obviously, such insufferable display of arrogance of the highest order gives ethnic Asantes or Asante-descended Ghanaians a very bad name. It also feeds smack into the traditional stereotyping of the profile of the typical character/personality of the average Asante male. But, of course, even more significantly, it is not the sort of conciliatory language that has been routinely associated with the hallmark of the bona fide confessors and followers of the Biblical Christ, most especially institutional leaders of the Christocentric establishment who claim either “sonship” or to symbolically embody the spirit and ideological thrust of Christianity.
In other words, what this writer is categorically suggesting here is that the sort of homicidal or unconscionably murderous language widely attributed to Mr. Badu Kobi in the aforementioned news report, has the striking markings of a demonic pretender to Christendom, who may very well be more imbued with occultic powers than the genial eudemonic spirit of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, the sort of salvific and eternally redemptive personality whose leadership and existential precepts Mr. Badu Kobi claims to have inherited. This patently satanic threat which was widely attributed to the leader of the so-called Glorious Wave International Church, pretty much reminded me of that scriptural verse of the Pauline Epistle of First-Corinthians, Chapter 10 Verse 12, which reads as follows: “So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall” (New International Version of the New Testament); or “Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall[s]” (English Standard Version). The Berean Study Bible is even more crispy and poignant. It reads as follows: “So the one who thinks he is standing firm should be careful not to fall.”
Could this really be the beginning of the end of the bona fide “Political Forecaster” who has pontifically styled himself as a “Prophet” in the ancient Biblical tradition? Well, our Christian faith tells us that it is not our judgment call or our inalienable right to so determine. Ultimately, that eschatological regime and/or authority belongs to the Almighty God, the Yahweh of the Ancient Israelites. Still, one cannot but wonder about this sort of demonic “God-Complex” that makes an ordinary human of the most average intelligence cavalierly presume to so miserly number the days left on Earth of his perceived enemies.
If, indeed, “Pastor” Emmanuel Badu Kobi is really interested in knowing whom his real enemies are, then, of course, we would humbly and solemnly counsel him to look himself up in the mirror. He may very likely be displeased with what he may be confronted with, but that would really not be anybody else’s fault but squarely his own. And if he really desires to take the life of anybody else besides himself, then the leader and founder of the so-called Glorious Waves International Church must rest assured of the fact that even his own life does not belong to him, in case he is thinking of himself as being brave enough to even take his own life. For, ultimately, all lives belong to Divine Providence. Indeed, it goes without saying that the crux of his apparent crisis of identity and psyche may very well inhere in the fact that Mr. Badu Kobi has been “foolishly” and woefully misguidedly trucking with the wrong crowd. We learn that he has either elected himself as such or has been mischievously appointed as the Spiritual-Godfather of former President John Dramani Mahama. Well, he is pretty much entitled to making his own choice of which Ghanaian politician to throw his weight behind. But he is absolutely in no way entitled to preaching interethnic hatred even in the statutorily recognized constitutionally democratic name of free speech.
For, as a Christian religious prelate, Mr. Badu Kobi is, perforce, held to a much higher standard of socially responsible leadership. Targeting his perceived enemy-critics for “spiritual liquidation,” because they have righteously upbraided him for his extra-Biblical ways, constitutes the most heinous of crimes. It is also unpardonably preposterous, because it “foolishly” presumes the avowed killer’s own existential eternity. As well, by his singularly and publicly expressed unremitting hatred for the current President of the Sovereign Democratic Republic of Ghana, we perfectly well know where Mr. Badu Kobi’s sentiments, loyalties and affinities lie where Akan people of Akyem descent are concerned. Maybe if he so much cared about conducting real, heavy-lifting research, he may want to find out about the numerically disproportionate contribution of the Akyem people towards the intellectual and cultural enlightenment of Ghanaians of all shades and stripes and ethnicities in the country. And on the latter count, as usual, I count our kinsfolk of the Saltpond-Anomabu littoral as bona fide members of people of Akyem descent. I also have absolutely no doubt that Mr. Badu Kobi would be solemnly flabbergasted with the epistemic lode that he uncovers.
At any rate, concerning my Adam’s Apple keyboard player paternal cousin’s stereotypical Asante Apocalypse or nightmare, it is one that inescapably bears telling more than once and then not as briefly as it is narrated in these few following paragraphs. For at least five years, my Akyem-Kyebi cousin lived with his common-law Asante-born and bred wife, who shall also remain anonymous but shall hypothetically be called Sister Afia. The couple had two pretty and very intelligent daughters, but that did not seem to be of any behavioral moment, as far as Sister Afia’s openly adulterous ways were concerned. I would shortly learn to my utter disgust and horror that for at least five years, my cousin’s wife slept every night with her Asante-born paramour – or boyfriend, for want of a better word – in the couple’s master-bedroom, in the East Elmhurst suburban township of Queensborough, New York City. It was an open secret to quite a remarkable membership of New York City’s Ghanaian community, except to those of us his kinsmen and women to whom my cousin’s life meant as much as our own. My cousin was literally forced to live in the basement of the very house for which he single-handedly paid the mortgage monthly and year-in and year-out. There may be other details of the story which time, the unrelenting eraser of memory, may have rendered a bit fuzzy in the telling.
Dear Reader, kindly forgive me because I am weeping profusely even as I write this brief portion of this series and this brief illustrative narrative. Eventually, my cousin would be evicted from his own home by his Asante-born wife at the earnest urging of her Asante-born paramour. As he personally told me this most painful story of his one day, while we were living together, my cousin had just 8 years to go before he fully finished paying off the 30-year mortgage on the house, whose initial purchasing deposit he had paid with winnings from one of those dozens of New York City and New York State mini-lotto games or gambles that he had staked and won with absolutely no input from his then homemaker wife. Sister Afia would later “foolishly” and “disrespectfully” tell my father, late, that he had to sexually satisfy her needs with another man because her own husband was too busy working two jobs and “foolishly” wearing down his body to be able to afford her the sort of sexual satisfaction that she thought she deserved and, indeed, desired. She had, however, conveniently forgotten to tell her uncle-in-law that working two jobs around the clock was about the only way that his donkey of a nephew could fully satisfy her inordinate craving for making endless purchases from Macy’s catalogues.
Which, of course, quite significantly fits in perfectly with the “Gyandorian Theory” of Asante female upbringing discussed earlier on in this column. Now, what I am trying to say here is that there is much more than sheer anecdotal humor in what “Prophet” Badu Kobi is seen preaching on the YouTube videoclip about the repulsive character of the average or stereotypical Asante woman. Even so, as already adumbrated above, my cousin’s heart-wrenching story is by no means unique or peculiar to the female species of Asante ethnicity. Rest assured, Dear Reader, that there are a countless number of similar narratives among all racial, language and ethnic grounds across the globe. But it also goes without saying that all stereotypes, ethnic or racial, are often based on limited and numerically unrepresentative or inadequately sampled experiences of individuals or groups of few individuals all over the world.
But, Dear Reader, wait a minute. There is a happy ending, however uncannily bizarre, to the preceding story. And it is that today, even as I write this column, my henpecked and long-cuckolded cousin lives somewhere between Rhode Island and the Connecticut area of New England with the same “greedy” and “disrespectful” Asante wife who conjugally betrayed him with her fellow “homegrown” Asante man. Today, my cousin is an ordained Evangelist with one of the Ghanaian-run Pentecostal churches and is fully equipped with an official church-assigned SUV, one of those Mahama-disdained Dodge Caravans, by which Evangelist Jeremiah Cousin Kwasi travels on a weekly basis to minister the gospel of his survival to other souls who may be enduring the same trials and tribulations he suffered for the better part of a decade or more. God bless Asanteman for all the morally and spiritually enlightening headaches and heartaches that Sister Afia gave my cousin and their two daughters. Do I bear any grudge against Sister Afia any more than I bear towards the Asante-Dwaben mother who warned me against entertaining any conjugal life with her daughter, Ms. Dina Adomako? Absolutely not! To be certain, I am the far better man for such stereotype-based rejection. Do I wish that my rather mortifying experience had never happened? Of course, I do! But, then again, aren’t all such psychological and heart-rending experiences an integral part of our very imperfect existence?
*Visit my blog at: kwameokoampaahoofe.wordpress.com Ghanaffairs
By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
August 2, 2019
E-mail: [email protected]
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