“My Grandmother had three children; a boy and two girls. Unfortunately, one of the girls died, and there was only one left. Since in our tradition, it is the females who carry the family line, she doted very much on this only girl. She was very bright and attended one of the best girls’ schools, and when she finished, her mother spared no expense in sending her to London to continue her studies. Those were the days when people travelled by steamer, so getting to England from West Africa was a huge and complete adventure in itself. Winter that year was very bad. On her way back to her lodgings one day, the fog was so thick, my aunt got lost. Cold and miserable she stood in the middle of a street crying, till a kind gentleman helped her to her home. This experience soured the London experience for her, and she refused to stay in London. She bombarded her mother with telegrams till she was repatriated”.
Sir, this story was told me by a mate when we were in secondary school. I of course did not believe him. At that age, we were very impressionable and had heard great things about this same London, and we had heard of people selling everything they owned to try and get there. Secondly I found it really hard to believe that fog could be so thick that a person could get lost trying to find her own house.
But I am wiser now, much wiser. What made me wise? I drove from Koforidua to Accra one late evening, and believe you me, fog can be impenetrable. I could hardly see beyond the bumper of my car for most part of the journey. Even though I thought I knew the road very well from previous use, I realized I was totally disoriented.
Ever since that journey, I have been looking forward to seeing some of those blinking lights that are fixed in the roads ( hear they are called cats eyes), put on the road median from just below the crest of the hill before the Methodist Girls School, near Mamfie, all the way to Peduase, near Accra.
I have waited for two short years, and nothing has happened. Maybe, for those of us who drive one of those local beasts, call the V8, a foggy road may not be much of a problem. However, many of us mere mortals cannot afford even one tyre on one of those animals. We either drive our rickety second and third hand cars which have been worked on by quack fitters several times over, or take a mini bus.
Interestingly, just in front of Peduase Lodge, several of these lights have been fixed in the road. This is quite intriguing, considering the fact that at this point in the road, there is virtually no fog. Similarly, the short stretch of road just after the East Legon Police station to the American House area (in Accra), where there is no fog, has dozens upon dozens of these lights fixed in the road.
My President, I am not good at guessing, so I won’t try to guess why things are the way they are. I am only a lapor. I hear that now there is something called Public Private Partnership (P.P.P.). Please the people on the Akwapem Ridge say that if those lights were fixed through P.P.P., they would also like some of that P.P.P. All the people who make the daily return journey from Koforidua to Accra, also say they would really love some of that P.P.P.
Thank you very much Sir, for your patience with my long story. I wish I could meet my mate again and apologise to him for not beleiving his story.
Your proficient Lapor.