By Patrick Quashigah.
By Patrick Quashigah
OBINIM CHILDGATE, MY TAKE SO FAR.
A lot has been said and written on the latest acts of Prophet “Angel Obinim” with belt in hand whipping some church members (children) for indulging in early sex and getting themselves pregnant.
Well, my take, however, is on this particular argument which I find curiously hard to follow. Perhaps, it’s me and not Mr. Kofi Bentil, a senior lawyer and citizen, confusing me.
His take on the issue as not being a crime seems to be founded on the “fact” that the couple being “adopted children” of the “Angel Obinim”, and by his support and care for them, have WILLINGLY SUBMITTED themselves to his acts of public display of barbarism and lack of good judgment and so cannot, by the principle of Volenti non fit injuria, which is that, one cannot protest what one willingly commits one’s self into, claim a lack of consent.
My respectful disagreement with Mr Kofi Bentil’s take stems from the same principle and my understanding of same, as excluding the obvious acts unacceptable to the reasonable person.
Here, Volenti, as a principle in law in my humble opinion does not and must not admit to any deliberate abusive, careless or barbaric acts or treatment and a dangerous lack of good judgment on the part of any “authority figure” entrusted with consent.
Lets take the example of football as used in the argument by Mr Bentil. The game of football first of all is not an act of war, nor is it a game of prehistoric natural existence of the survival of the fittest, but one very much regulated by acceptable decent standards and rules which must apply always to that game.
A footballer, therefore does not just by consenting to play the game give up all his rights to safety and protection which the game itself provides, he does not expect, accept nor welcome brutal medieval attacks on his “precious” legs by any reckless and dangerous player(s) without a right to shout for help.
Such a game, if we construe the instant “Angel Obinim” situation to be equal to, would amount to going back to a classical state of nature, where the nation would not be a place wholesome for our lives anymore.
It’s like saying when a child consents to submit to the CARE, SUPPORT and PROTECTION of an “authority figure” then he/she admits to the vile thoughts and despicable bouts of say persistent sodomy, which that innocent child is later subjected to by an obviously “insane” authority figure. This position or understanding of Volenti, I find hard to believe, let alone accept.
As my faith would have me believe it, let me put it as the good old book, The Bible puts it, for which one of you fathers, when his son asks for fish would give him a cobra?.
To willingly submit to a father’s care, support and trust DOES NOT, forfeit rights to be sparred a cobra, dead or alive and doesn’t accept any open whipping (NOT CORRECTION), that takes away from a child’s dignity.
Surely, the children didn’t sign up to be indignified, and such cannot, be implied with their consent. Such a consent if erroneously believed, is negated by the circumstances of the relationship.
ONLY MY TEN PENCE THOUGHTS.
YAHYA JAMMEH, THE OVER PAMPERED DESPOT.
I can see clearly in this picture why Yahya Jammeh feels so victorious and happy on his way into exile. Indeed, he looks like saying “NAANIAMA” to his country, the incoming President, Adama Barrow and in fact to all of us Africans.
How did we all fail to see that it was all a ploy to loot as much as was in the country’s kitty. A grand scheme hatched to buy himself the much needed time to steal so much, as in his over bloated ego of himself, he had under-estimated the Gambian voters and not ever anticipated being so humiliated at an election run while he was still in charge, let alone be called upon to leave The Gambia, the country he had made his own property for twenty-two murderous years as his official titles show.
He had so much believed against his losing the December elections that, God being a humorous God, made him forget to make the usual back up hoarding to live on in opposition. He, therefore, takes advantage of certain utterances from members in the new Government-elect, who wanted to have him arrested and made to account for his stewardship, to suddenly change the game out of fear. He became the game caller and we all were caught ball watching while he dictated his luxurious exit at the expense of the Barrow government and the poor people of The Gambia.
The plan was to recant an earlier admission of electoral defeat to incoming President Barrow, scare the rest of West Africa with a declaration of a State of Emergency as if he had the power to rule by force, phone up some Presidential friends to halt a potential move of ECOWAS troops into Banjul under the pretext of an “exit deal” while all these while, he Jammeh, got busy with his finance ministry cronies to stash as much as they could of the nation’s wealth into bags to be flown on planes in broad daylight, under the monster called an “exit deal”.
This internationally syndicated fraud by a defeated Head of State must not be allowed to continue or stand at all.
Reading through a purported deal he had secured before leaving power, the sheer audacity of some of the items listed there, were laughable, yet we sat down and dealt with Jammeh who packed plane loads of much-needed resources for The Gambia out of the country. What did we think he was packing with him into exile, clothes?.
I think the money must be seized and returned back to the people of The Gambia or his entire immediate family be detained under house arrest till every cent of the confirmed 11 million dollars is returned back to the struggling peanut and tourism economy of The Gambia.
Besides the arrogance of this daylight robbery watched by fellow Presidents, is the precedent of impunity that would become the norm for failed former Presidents, as they would have an open cheque to cash their nation’s wealth unto guarded and waiting planes ready to take them where ever they want as part of a “buy my intransigence out” deal, at the expense of the incoming government.
If all “exit deals” were this rich without any safeguards, then there wouldn’t be the need for “special people”, as anybody so appointed could have stood by and given Jammeh the leeway he got from these negotiating Presidents. I hold the view that they did Africa no good by this deal. After all, what real threat was Jammeh at that stage except to empty the Presidential Villa off him.
This punishment by Jammeh if it is aimed at saying “naaniama” to the President-Elect, is certainly too much for the citizenry, if allowed to get away. What would be left of the country should President Barrow too, decide to do same in just four years time after also losing an election?. Can African economies afford to sustain such luxury on the part of departing former Presidents?.
I have heard people say these are material things that can be replaced, so he should just be allowed to take them, as long as he exits The Gambia with his troubles. My question, however, is would he be the only ever albatross of a President on the continent?. If no, then this approach to a peaceful exit sets off an impunity that the continent would soon not be able to bear.
He is the one who lost the elections, he’s the one refusing to accept the results of a legitimate process, no one but he, Jammeh was the one in the wrong here, The Gambian army had refused to fight on his side and yet we allow him to tell us how he should be pampered and we over did it, when what we should have really done to such an egomaniac was to have held our own, called off his bluff and allowed the troops to flush him out cheaply and let the chips fall where they may.
Lets have a fruitful day.
By Patrick Quashigah
CAN WE REASON TOGETHER?!!
By Patrick Quashigah:
Enough water, I believe, has passed under the bridge on the issue of the recent bribery scandal that hit the Appointments Committee of Ghana’s Parliament and like any worried Ghanaian, irrespective of my party affiliation, my position after extensive following of the matter tells me, and I believe many other silent watchers of our Governance process, that an act that stands to dent the image of not just the new government but the institution of Parliament took place that should not have taken place.
Carelessness and complacency is what made this to happen.
A very distinguished son of the land, Boakye Agyarko, who is very well qualified and best suited for this carefully appointed position of Energy Minister by President Nana Addo has been muddied.
The Party, New Patriotic Party, had just last December ridden on anti-corruption as its rallying call to rescue Ghana and won that election, amassing majority members of parliament in the process.
The majority party appointee described above is refused clearance by the minority members on the Appointment Committee of our Parliament pending the production of a certain material, which whether he is able to present or not would NOT STOP his clearance by the committee, as his sponsoring party already has a majority to clear him any way and the minority’s refusal was only a formality in such instances.
Then a few hours after that encounter, there’s news of an attempted or “returned” bribery by that nominee through the Chairman of that Appointment committee, Honourable Joe Osei-Wusu, using the minority whip of the clearance-refusing minority party to whip his members.
Having carefully listened to all the stakeholders in the said bribery matter, I am still lost as to the need or why money was given only to be shared by the minority members when the committee was made up of both majority and minority, assuming even at this point, that the purpose was not to influence their change of hearts.
Why was the money given, is it the norm to give only one side of the house any motivation for work done by both sides, were the minority side the only side inconvenienced by the late sitting?.
As I have said above, listening to them all, it is now clear the money was given and so I am most at ease with the position and sequence of facts by Honourable Ayariga, clear facts that are by the day seeming very difficult to assail by the opposing side’s lame explanations.
The Chairman of the committee, who is alleged to have given the influencing money through the minority Chip Whip in a confrontation with Hon. Ayariga, a recipient and news breaker to the media, did not contest such a serious charge to clear his name, knowing the ramifications to his position as Chairman and as a lawyer, to his own reputation.
He rather tries, according to Hon. Ayariga, to only find out why he Ayariga, had taken the matter of the money to be shared out amongst only the minority members to the media.
He, the Chairman still at this point, if he was not in the know of the bribery, was not fighting for his name when Ayariga told him that the majority had campaigned that the former President was corrupt, but only said “oh so this is an equalisation?.
So far into this matter, this encounter has not been refused or the statement denied, except rather that Hon. Ayariga seems to be gaining more key witnesses to his position and rendering all the Allah swearing Honourable Muntaka’s stand of not having given his members any money, even more troubling to the mind, let alone to be believed.
Good people, why would Ayariga for no reason, if he lied, concoct such knowing as a lawyer the legal implications?. He has been through the vetting of other nominees earlier and not made a fuss of any bribery attempt on the minority. Indeed, there were two nominees that were refused minority backing from that vetting, so why would he name Agyarko as the sole beneficiary of the influencing?.
Did the majority not know their strength to pass the nominee by themselves should ever come to that, or was the nominee himself if he has anything to do with this, which I doubt so much, so desperate or better still, was some one trying to help the nominee without considering the consequence to the very nominee if the bribery failed as it has?.
What happens if this matter goes on to be very true. Does it not have the clear potential of a recall of the Minister, as he cannot be in office with a corruption scandal over his head?. Why do this to the Party and a sector that requires the best of his very experienced expertise.
Again, is it not going to waste the time of all of us when this current committee is dissolved for a new one as I would expect to happen, seeing that these current members have dishonoured themselves and must not be allowed to further vet our honourable ministers of state and further delay the start of government business?. I believe it will.
You may say, but Korshie have you not concluded too soon before any report is produced?. Well, I agree with your hoping but if you have followed such issues and been around for a while, listening to some of the statements and reading between the lines so far you would not need an angel to tell you a terrible breach to the integrity of our august house was committed. So spare me your hope and wait for your report, we can all tell.
I am not only ashamed but very angry right now, that for somebody’s joke of smart thinking, we could just be losing the brilliance of such a fine man even before he settled down to help our country.
Whoever schemed this very tardy deal as a smart move in the Party to solve the parliamentary stalemate must bow their head in shame for doing this to Ghana and the NPP.
Why did the Chairman and Muntaka tell what has come out to be a lie, when the money had indeed passed from them, even if not for the purpose being alleged by the minority grown MPs who are now all singing to Ghanaians that they were indeed given the money by their Chief Whip. Surely this is not too tedious to avoid.
Why would a minority Whip give money to his members to share and to approve a majority nominee, which money is not from Parliament’s account?.
Diligence in the way we as a people do business is very key to eradicating such unnecessary yet reputation damaging behaviours from our body politics and national governance process.
A few days ago, the New York Times ran an op-ed from a creative-writing instructor and confessed torturer:
“I was an interrogator at Abu Ghraib,” Eric Fair writes. “I tortured.”
But when Fair discusses his creative-writing class at Lehigh University — in conjunction with his experience as a torturer — he writes not about investigating Mahmoud Saeed’s “Lizard’s Colony” or perhaps scenes from Elias Khoury’s Yalo, but Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried.” He writes about showing his students a cigar box filled with stuff he bought at the Baghdad International Airport.
Fair seems focused on keeping the issue of torture at the forefront of the American imagination, which is good. But in effect, by reading his essay, we are asked to sympathize exclusively with the torturer. We know about Eric Fair, and about his black fleece coat, and about his son, who rides a bus to school.
We don’t know about any…
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