Where I come from,  there is no word in the local language for foreigners. We only have the word strangers. In Kasena culture, the word foreigner as it is used and understood by others is not the same as the word used for a stranger.

The Kasena, like any African, accord a stranger the respect and hospitability they would God Himself or His anointed Angels. Stories abound in Kasena and African folklore of people who have treated strangers well were given blessings in the form of power to heal, immortality, and immunity against their enemies.

It is mentioned that when long-nosed pink men on some voyage lost their way and set foot on black soil, they were accorded some appreciable level of divine dignity and respect by the African host.

The strangers that were welcomed had an insidious agenda. Some of them had a second home and were milking dry the host to develop their homes. The other group found the mat of their benefactors so comforting. They were ready to confiscate this mat of comfort by any means necessary. This was the coveted mat of natural resources and territorial dominance. A stranger who does not know their proper place must be taught. So, resistance culminated in some African countries claiming or perceived to have claimed their right to sovereignty.

All over the world, there is the struggle for control and dominance. The issue is getting compounded every day. While some countries are making giant strides, most African countries are retrogressing astronomically. In current times, the continent is disturbed by conflicts, disease, corruption and actions of autocratic and puppeteer leaders.

In Ghana and in most parts of Africa, the fight has never been easy. To others, the woes and throes are as a result of our encounter with the looting pink men. This, I will not dabble in. However, while others have learned from the antics of the marauding strangers and turned this into a weapon, some of us have decided to make it an excuse and continue to live in that shadow.

Every day, I have the unpleasant privilege of encountering the demons of our time. Sad and nauseating as this could be, little seems to be done about them. One particular morning, as I sat in the bus en route Accra, tears filled my eyes.  Along the vast stretch of land from the north to the south of Ghana, I saw the struggle for survival. Men wearing torn and heavily patched clothing with hoes slung on bony shoulders were trekking to the farms. The farmers have worked their hands into blisters and calluses. Bare-footed women with heavy loads of firewood and farm produce were also returning from the farms. They were the early risers. I saw in them, the desire to survive, to educate their children, and to move Ghana forward. They know of no pink man excuse. All they know is that they have their own kind of leaders who must take them out of their poverty and misery.

Thinking of government interventions such as SADA, GYEEDA and its demons, I realized that some of our own people are bound on sentencing us into a perpetual shithole. This cannot be attributed to the pink man and their Machiavellian antics. It is just a typical Ghanaian demon. The sad thing is, there are so many of them than the church can exorcise.

Come to think of it, what has happened to the money that was to equip the Ghanaian farmer and enable them to increase food production? What has happened to all the commitments that were made decades ago to take the farmer out of this shithole of antiquated farming methods? Our ‘seers’ speak of agriculture as if it is a free market that anybody can waltz into. So, you hear them say, “we encourage the youth to go into agriculture”.The once thriving cotton industry in the north has collapsed. Same as the meat and tomato factories in the Upper East region.

Our fathers say that of every ailment we suffer, there is equally a plant in the forest to cure it. This may be true given that we eat what we produce.When the demons suffer us into eating pink man garbage, and when they compel us to drink their wine we must surely know that when we fall sick the remedy of the sickness will not be found in our own forest but that of the land of the pinks.

The pontiff cannot exorcise the demons in us if we fail to admit that we are possessed. It cannot cleanse us of our inequities if we continue to blame the pinks for our troubles. It has to start with: Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned. Beyond this confession of self-guilt, there must be a true repentance. We all have varying demons. Demons of; hatred, ethnic and tribal jingoism, extreme avidity, unlimited satiety and deceit amongst others. The sure thing is we are all bound to end up in an abyss of a shithole if we do not cleanse ourselves.

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