Contrary to what the purported research allegedly conducted by the leader of the so-called Glorious Wave International Church has reportedly revealed to “Prophet” Emmanuel Badu Kobi, the stereotypical mistreatment of men by women, actually some men by some women, is not the least bit confined to or peculiar to any one cultural or sub-ethnic group; rather, it cuts across all ethnic, cultural, national and racial divides. In the following brief narrative that constitutes the contents of this section of our series, the couple involved were both of Fante-Akan subethnic descent. Both have been deceased for quite sometime now. Both were also distinguished personalities in the Gomoa-Eshiem-Mozano- headquartered Musama Disco Christo Church (MDCC). Indeed, so institutionally renowned was the great religious woman whose story, or actually a known little fragment of whose checkered conjugal story is being partially told here, for the edification of readers who desire a fuller understanding of the fact that, first of all, no marriage that lasts for a considerable length of time is without its own fair share of foibles or rough edges and bumps and cracks here and there. But even more significantly, the fact of the matter is that conjugal disharmony is not peculiar to any one specific ethnic or subethnic polity, nationality or race across the world.
To be certain, so institutionally established was Maame Fante that anybody who regularly traveled on public or commercial vehicles, that is, by “Tro-Tro” or taxicabs, for that matter, through the Dansoman Estate Housing Area of Accra, Ghana’s capital, could not have missed that bus stop by the name of Maame Fante or Maame Kantamanto. In the prime of her life and career, first as a very successful and wealthy businessman, Maame Fante, as Mrs. Inkoom was affectionately called and known, was also called Maame Kantamanto. I suppose the latter sobriquet came with the fact that Mrs. Inkoom at some point in her business career owned quite a sizeable store-front, as New Yorkers are wont to say, in the Kantamanto commercial district of Accra. She would completely give up her business holdings and dealings and fully plunge herself into the work of God. She would also be generously gifted with the talent of prophecy; and for the three-year period, from 1983 to 1985, when he departed the then “revolutionary” shores of Ghana, Maame Fante, or the former Maame Kantamanto, was the spiritual guide and mentor of yours truly. By the way, I had another spiritual guide and mentor by the name of Rev. Sagoe who has also been deceased for quite some time now.
Actually, I was first the critically ill patient of Maame Fante – and also Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital’s Dr. Francis Mohammed Mustapha, also presently deceased – before I became Maame Fante’s protégé or mentee. I was first introduced to the Musama Disco Christo Church by my eldest maternal aunt, Pastor Mary “Saribaba” Akosua Baaduaa Sintim, who had herself been introduced to the MDCC after she had taken seriously ill. My dear Auntie Mary transitioned into eternity some five years ago at 89 years old. Mentioning her age is very significant for me because while growing up, Auntie Mary and I were the two Sintim Family Members who were so chronically ill and bedridden that legend had it that none of our other family members expected us to live very long. My Aunt Mary would end up becoming paraplegic and wheelchair-bound. It would be during one of the annual conventions of the MDCC in Mozano, Gomoa-Eshiem, in the Central Region, legend has it, that my now-late Aunt Mary would experience the healing power of God through the MDCC’s formidable Prayer Brigade and regain the vital use of her feet once more. It was also during this time that she got her name “Saribaba.” That must have been sometime in the late 1950s, shortly before my own birth.
You see, the MDCC worshippers believe that every human being has a divine nominal inscription etched on his/her forehead. This is one’s real God-given name, the one to which one would respond on the Day of Judgment and beyond. Most of us do not even know about the existence of this fact or name, let alone think about being able to decipher the same. Unfortunately, I fall into this category. I did not live very long among the MDCC adherents and practitioners of the good Old Testament Culture before I departed the “curfewed” shores of Ghana for the United States of America in July 1985 to be with my now-deceased parents. But I am still curious to learn what my “Heavenly Name” is or at least reads and sounds like. I hope it is not something like “Ali Baba.”
Last year, when I visited Ghana to meet with my in-laws, in particular my mother-in-law, I also had the pleasure of meeting with Sister Ampofowaa, one of the old-time friends of my wife’s and a staunch adherent of MDCC values and creed. I realized to my pleasant surprise then that I was still a Musama Disco Christian Fellow Traveler (MDCFT) at heart. I had, as was all to be expected, forgotten some of our liturgical greeting words; but, thankfully, I could still remember a few, such as “Minoosta.” At any rate, the Maame Fante Story is strikingly similar to that of my cousin the evangelist in its general contours. The details may not be exactly the same, for absolutely no two such stories are ever exactly the same. Legend has it that as Maame Kantamanto, Maame Fante, then filthy rich, would routinely dump the couple’s very young and fragile children on her very calm, quiet and longsuffering husband. Mr. Inkoom, he pretty much perfectly answered to his name, is, today, enviably immortalized by the quite remarkable number of church hymns that he had composed for the prayerful enjoyment of the Musama Disco Christo Church.
When I met the couple sometime in the middle of 1983, Mr. and Mrs. Inkoom were a picture-perfect couple like the proverbial hand-in-glove. They also worked harmoniously together in the godly art of healing the sick and hurting. And I was privileged to have been one of their patients and fellow worshippers. You see, Dear Reader, both couples were of Akan-Fante subethnic descent. The good news here, though, is that in the end the errant one among them was redeemed and the couple, as the cliché goes, lived happily thereafter. You see, you don’t need the equation or factor of an Asante woman to make for either a very bad marriage or a rancorous one. It is all a matter of well-reasoned choices, luck and pure serendipity.
Mr. Badu Kobi has been widely quoted to have said the following: “If you marry an Ashanti woman, you [would] have imported [a] problem [un-]to yourself forever. I have done [the] research and it is so” (See “Appietus’ Musical Works Have Expired – Prophet Badu Kobi Fires Back” GhanaWeekend.com / Ghanaweb.com 8/1/19). I wish Pastor Badu Kobi could kindly point his followers and audiences to the sources of his “Asante-Women-Are-Trouble” research. You see, Dear Reader, there is a darn wicked irony here; and it is the fact that although Mr. Badu Kobi was himself raised by an Asante woman, somehow, he has made himself, and perhaps all Asante males, the convenient exception to the immutably jinxed Asante woman who, by the way, was also partly raised by her Asante father, for the most part, and who is not marriageable in perpetuity. Perhaps I am very lucky to have been conjugally rejected by at least some three Asante women. The figure could actually be much higher.
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By Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., PhD
English Department, SUNY-Nassau
Garden City, New York
August 5, 2019
E-mail: [email protected]
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