There was barely a dry eye in the building.
The Offinso Municipal Assembly building is usually quiet on weekdays. But on this occasion, the conference hall was open, with about 20 persons seated. And yet, it was very quiet.
The occasion was not a happy one, and the families seated belonged to the eight boys who had tragically been killed on their from a registration exercise on September 19.
Having buried their sons, the families were here at the behest of Black Stars player Kevin-Prince Boateng, who had promised days after the accident that he would help.
“Like I said, I heard it on the news and that is why I am here, I want to help,” the player had told JoyNews a fortnight after the accident.
Although he could not personally make the trip down from Italy, Boateng sent representatives from Accra to make a donation on his behalf.
“We are here to share in your pain, so that you do not carry it all alone,” said Fiifi Parker Hanson, who represented the player.
In attendance were the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) of the area, Solomon Kesse, and a representative of the chief of the area.
Each of the eight bereaved families received GHS 2,000 from the Italy-based footballer, who has also pledged to do more for the surviving boys.
“When we heard that Boateng had promised to do this, we taught it was just one of those things, so we were so happy when the call came that we should assemble the families for this occasion. It means a lot,” said Nana Osei Bediako, who represented Nana Wiafe Akenten III.
On his part, the MCE expressed delight at the gesture. “It is not even about the amount Kevin sent, but the willingness for him to go to these lengths to do this. It really shows a human side of him and for this, he would never lack.”
One of eight boys who died was a twin, called Panyin. The other twin, Hubert Kakra, was at the ceremony. “I miss my brother so much. We were both supposed to go to Afrancho for the registration that day, but I had something else to do at [the nearby town of] Kayera. That’s why I couldn’t go. Otherwise…”At the end of the short ceremony, mothers wailed, and fathers fought back tears.
As tough as it all was, there was a sense that they have not been alone. “I know I’m one of the lucky ones, because since the incident, the government and well meaning people have supported us. This one by Kevin-Prince Boateng is also good and makes us feel that we live in a community and we are not islands. God bless him. ”