I wrote this piece in 2008. It appeared in my weekly column “Asia 601” in the Graphic Business newspaper. In the last few days I have had to deal directly with a hospital emergency involving my dearest wife Sylvia because she is a woman. Questions I have been pondering about Ghana’s women and their welfare assumed a far more direct potency and force in the near nightmare I experienced. These questions I will return to in subsequent writings. But this piece I dedicate to Sylvia and all Ghanaian women for being women and all the courage it takes in our Republic. Change must come!!!!!!!!!!
|Duafe-The Akan(Ghana) symbol for femininity|
has reportedly eased after the historic Olympic Games in August this year. Beijing city officials took advantage of the window of opportunity offered by the quest for environmentally clean Games. Beijingers were urged to patronize public transport and a cost was imposed for having your two cars out in town at the same time. The policy has since been in place. I have been caught several times in the grind of Beijing traffic when I visited the capital on my own trysts. Making the trip from the imposing and architectural marvel that the Beijing West Railway Station is to the Diplomatic Enclave (known as Sanlitun where Beijing Ghana’s embassy is located) launches you smack into the typical traffic in the morning and evening rush hours. But the irritation of it all vaporizes watching Chinese women deftly and confidently navigating trams, coaches, double-decker buses and indeed buses of all kinds through the labyrinthine maze of metals on wheels. This sight is replicated across Beijing . China
The Chinese say that the woman holds half of heaven. This reflects the importance that women issues have in the Chinese policymakers mind. And on the streets of the
the confident strut of Chinese women cannot be missed decked out as they often are in their trousers!!! Indeed in Asia China’s women are streets ahead of their counterparts in other countries in self actualization. In China Japan and the social standing of the Chinese woman is a dream to be pursued. In Korea the assembling (computers, cameras, etc) industry was built to tap the delicate touch of women in mind. Women’s issues (health, education, career etc.) in Singapore are not simply matters of rhetoric wrapped in patronizing platitudes and vain promises that never get acted upon policy wise. I give an example. There is a women’s and children’s PUBLIC hospital about fifteen minutes walk from my campus. The ambience, the facilities and the service blow the mind. There are escalators and lifts. My heart melts seeing pregnant women all comfy and at ease riding on them. Children have play rooms outfitted with toys to divert their minds from the pain of sickness. The consultation rooms are choked with doctors. And this hospital is not in China Shanghai or Beijing or Macau where money literally oozes. It seems the Chinese fashion industry is for women. Women’s bras, panties, clothing and accessories seem to be everywhere and at affordable prices. And by God our beloved women in are so down on their luck some still settle for second hand panties and bras!!! And this is the reality of those who will bear and nurture the next generation!!! Ghana