Mon, Jan

Some 60 years ago, some people who came before us, believed that we could conquer the world.

On Belonging

A couple of years ago, I was walking on the street in the capital city of a country not my own… when a middle aged man grabbed me by the arm. Before I could react, he grabbed me by the other arm, feeling my biceps and facing me, and then asked me if I needed a job. I shrugged his hands off and told him no, but I still feel his hands on me once in a while. I still remember the look in his eyes. I see his gaze bypassing any humanity that I have, peering purely to seek out function. Any function that this non-person could fulfil in his machine. I still feel the defilement of that moment. Because I know where I come from. I know I am not just a mass of muscle and skin walking aimlessly on streets looking for jobs. And even if I was, my humanity should be considered before my functionality.


There is a certain dehumanisation that one must endure to thrive in today’s Ghana. It stems from a constant attack on our right to cognitive actualisation. It is the painful paradox of ingraining through education some respect for logic and force of mental power, and yet intentionally and routinely eroding their impact on our actual lives. So we know what we should do, we know how things should work, but this knowledge slumbers in a utopia deeply buried in a sub consciousness that we collectively disowned years ago.

It’s been 23 years since secondary school. It’s been 14 years since medical school. And I have come a long way. Two decades and a few years ago, I was just a guy standing in the queue with...


There is a harsh reality about trying to succeed in an environment rigged for failure. It always catches up. There is a certain inevitability about the attitude that births failure: no matter how hidden the rot remains, it is just a question of time. The fruits emerge, just as surely as a mango will fall from the tree in its season.

Sometimes when I am driving home, the battles of my patients continue in my head. Some are losing battles. Some are winning battles. Most of the time, the battle is the patient’s to fight. I only come in to facilitate, put a few things right so that the battle lines are in the right places. Most people will never need me to fight most of their life battles. There are only a few that I can help, and even for these, the onus is on the person to walk up to the battle line, after I have helped to draw it.

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