Useless Column: Jemisi Chop Last

Ei is it true that the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) says Nigeria’s population has hit a new all-time high of 201 million? Eish! Imagine each person contributing just one thousand naira into a fund every day. One thousand naira is just about GHC1 in Ghana o, or? That will be about N201,000,000. Plenty money! So when will anybody just tell Alhaji Dr. Dangotey to send me just 0000.0001% of his wealth? Ern? Ao! Nipa y3 morbor o, Hahahahaha!

Jemisi, my old time friend is rich but I don’t know what he uses his money for apart from always going to the gym after which he goes to drink beer and omo tuo!

Jemisi was my friend at Lagos Town or what we now call Accra New Town. You can’t spend a brief portion of your life in that town and lack ‘hin-wa’ (eye trong). Kai! Jemisi and I were friends at Agbavana 1-400 cluster of schools. Whenever there was an inter-zonals sports competition between all the schools in the Okaikwei schools in Accra, Jemisi had all the fans and would stole the show. He was a 400-meter athlete. Our P.E Teacher, Jasmatoro always ensured that Jemisi was fielded for Agbavana. On the dry gravel-filled Kotobaabi school park, Jemisi had all the fans from even the rivalry schools even before the race would start. Not bcos he would be the winner o but bcos he would finish the race in grand style even though he would place last! So at the whistle of ‘Anomaa…g3s3di…pi’ (On your mark, get ready…and then the whistle ‘pi’), the ‘leaders’ would take the lead in the 400 meter race. Jemisi would take it easy and just ran not too fast; of course he knew he would be last but no matter what would happen he would finish the race. While some of the ‘winners’ who took the lead fell off along the way before the race ended as a result of tiredness or muscle pull, Jemisi would continue slowly but surely and would be about 100 meters away from the last but one athlete. To be frank, he liked attention so he would start doubling his pace. Then the whole Kotobaabi sakora ‘stadium’ would erupt into cheers and shouts. ‘Jeeeemisi…Jemisi…Jeeeemisi…Jemisi! And these included pupils from opposing schools. And at this point, he would gather more energy not necessarily to beat the one ahead of him o, but to ensure that he finished the race in grand style! At our time, nobody really knew the actual medalists o; all we knew was Jemisi right from the cyto schools in Achimota, Abofu, Alogboshie, Anunmle, Dzorwulu, Akweteman, Korpevi and Apenkwan, Maamobi, etc! Jemisi always placed last but would ensure that he finished the race. A lesson I’d learnt very early in life; not about how swiftly you move but the determination to end the race well!

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I heard Jemisi is a Professor in Geophysics somewhere in Qatar now! You don’t need to be first but make sure you finish the race, well wai!

You can’t spend part of your growing years in and around New Town and fail to succeed in life – either for good or otherwise! Ala!

You have no idea what the late DCOP Awwuni went through in the hands of those boys at when he became the Nimma Police Commander! Hahahahahahai! He was given no peace! Awww…may his disciplined soul rest in perfect peace! It is needless to say he was an extremely principled Police Officer!

But in the Okaikoi Metro er, there was this other guy in one of the cyto schools around! Paddy was baaaaad! Negative Smartness be what! In his cyto school, during break time, where you buy the kenkey is not where you pay for it o. You make the payment at where you collect your ground kpashitor (pepper) and fish. What it means was that you can choose not to go for pepper and that becomes the loss to the kenkey seller. Bizizi was his name! He  took advantage and would buy two balls of kenkey and would never move to where to collect the pepper and fish. He would evade payment and get away with the kenkey which was more critical than the fish and pepper to him. But before doing that, he would have brought ground pepper from the house. As for fish, not so important to him; what mattered for the poor boy was to fill his ‘internal space’. That was the beginning of stealing and learning how to ‘evade tax’. He made the kenkey seller make a lot of losses and the day he was caught er, the beatings he received er, I suwear. I have realized much earlier during my teens that some of these things, when unchecked early in our lives nurture future criminals!

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Society suffers more if such a person goes into politics in the future; he would end up giving genuine, honest politicians a bad name. Woe unto the business community and GRA if he becomes a businessman!

We have done four months of the year and you may not seem to be seeing your way clear as regards meeting your annual set objectives but double up like Jemisi did and you would get there at the end of the day!

Like Abraham Lincoln would say ‘when I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad and that is my religion’ (paraphrased)!

Happy weekend to you all be good. Greetings to you o, Mr Agbeko Awadzi of the ADB Bank!

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