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A literary critique

Letter to Jomo is a socio-politico-cultural mine of information which I recommend for aficionados of literary writing, and serious journalists who can learn from a style that takes their profession away from the mundane to a higher plane.

Many more will find pleasure in reading the letters for the beauty of language and matter in them as well as the accuracy of information that they provide. Generations to come will find them readable, enjoyable and a repository of information on Ghanaian social history.

Professor A. B. K. Dadzie

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George Sydney Abugri is a prolific, multi-award winning, Ghanaian newspaper journalist. He trained as a science and mathematics teacher, but migrated to journalism after a decade of teaching. 

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This is the newly launched General Telegraph Broadcasting Service {GTBC}. The time is what your watch says it is. Here is the bor­ing news without any headlines and served in the manner of rice, beans, gari, fried pepper, fish and a few pebbles and read by A. A. Ananse Jnr.

 

The Reverend R. Z. K. Adongo Boateng, head of the Church of Moses, has told Christians that the way to heaven is much narrower than a shepherd’s footpath through a thorny hush.

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President Mahama was at an NDC rally at the Trade Fair Center at the weekend and spent quite some time making longing speeches, taking hefty swipes at his political foes in the NPP and punctuating his animated diatribe with the NDC foot soldier’s battle chant: Cho Boi!

The president appeared to lose his characteristic cool somewhat, and at one point, reached out for renowned economist and NPP Vice-Presidential candidate Dr Mamudu Bawumia by the jugular, for calling him and his administration incompetent. Some said the president should have passed his rival on to party propagandists to grill or barbecue according to fancy but not take Dr Bawumia’s on himself.

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I have this undue obsession with potholes, Jomo. Potholes? Yes, potholes. They are a mystery to me. There are so many of them everywhere all the time, that there has to be an explanation. There are potholes and there are potholes, Jomo: There are the standard-sized potholes. These are ugly, erosion-aided, miniature excavations on the asphalt which cause motorists to dance their vehicles crazily and perilously across lanes like drunken crabs.

Then there are the chasm-like craters which also go by the misnomer “potholes.” Sometimes you come across one before you are aware, and oh mine, riddle of riddles, what do you do? Break suddenly in an attempt to avoid the gaping monstrosity and you will cause one long, potentially fatal road pile-up. So? Bang! craang!! gbraang!!! you plunge into the darned canyon, snarling engine and all.

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Very few people have ever seen his face: He travels incognito and in his undercover operations, wears very strange and bizarre disguises. His exact age is unknown but he is believed to be in his early or mid-forties. His gender is the subject of a joke among some Ghanaians who think he could be a female parading herself as a man! Meet the Ghanaian journalist who is often the unwitting hero of his own stories. Even his name is as strange as his approach to investigative journalism.

The BBC’s correspondent in Accra, Sammy Darko, sums up his profile this way:  “Anas Aremeyaw Anas is something of an enigma, as he is never seen in public without a disguise. His fans call him a modern-day folk hero or the ‘James Bond of journalism’, for his work in exposing alleged corruption and malpractice in Ghana and beyond.

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Common sense tells us that HIV/AIDS is spread by promiscuous sexual behavior but respected economist Steven Landsburg argues that HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases are spread NOT by promiscuous sexual behaviour but by avoiding casual sex!

 

It is most unbelievable but Landsburg is able to provides proof through cogent arguments, that the chief culprits behind the spread of HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases are monogamy, chastity and other forms of extreme sexual conservatism.

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Every developing democracy like ours needs a strong political opposition to balance the forces of domestic power, hold the government accountable for its actions and inactions and constantly remind the government that there is a viable political alternative waiting eagerly in the wings.

The New Patriotic Party whose ideology derives from the Danquah-Busia tradition represents that alternative to its neck-to-neck political rival, the National Democratic Congress in Ghana’s politics.

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The other day I had a vision, Jomo: In this dream, the government’s big man in charge of water supply is wearing a big suit and making a big speech in big English, see? He says the Ghana Water Company has been subjected to bad management for many years. There has also been no investment whatsoever in the water sector for as long as anyone can remember. 

He says the water company has been running monstrous operational losses for years. The company produces hundreds of millions of litres of water a day for national consumption but half of the lot is lost due to leakage. What is more, water consumers are not paying for water consumed. He says this cannot go on, and the government has hit upon the solution to the problem. 

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