Wpid Kwaku Ogboro
Ha De Nyuie, Komla Dumor

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?All the world is a stage. And all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and entrance??William Shakespeare.

Asomdwekromanians and the world at large did not hear pleasant news on Saturday January 18, 2014. The sun, which was high up and bright in the sky, was soon covered by dark clouds. The darkness pulled out the roots of one of our beloved from the soil of this life.  The sunset smiled at his lifeless body as he sojourned to the village that has only entrances and no exits. Puei! It is indeed very shocking to hear that Komla Afeke Dumor has joined our ancestors in Samanfoland.

The news of his demise reached me just as I was returning from the burial of a Muslim friend who had passed away that morning. I felt pain and shock. It was after two calls from very reliable sources that I came to terms with the fact that the ?Boss Player?, as he was popularly known, had really joined his ancestors.

During his days as host of the Super Morning Show at Joy FM, he usually gave motivational messages. There was this message he gave that has continued to live with me till this day. He said most Asomdwekromaians were comfortable being spectators rather than being on the field to play. He entreated all those listening to him that day to strive to be players and desist from engaging in idle gossip about others. I?ve since tried to be a player, and not a spectator.

I was privileged to have had a personal interaction with Komla. My first interaction with him was in 2011, through a mutual friend. He was amazed when I recounted to him how that particular motivational message had inspired me. The humble bloke that he was, he gracefully gave me a firm handshake and said he felt humbled.

My second and last encounter with him was last year during Joy FM?s annual Schools? Reunion. He immediately recognized me. After exchanging pleasantries, he told me he enjoyed reading my write-ups on DAILY GUIDE?S website, dailyguideghana.com. He, however, expressed the view that he felt it would be better if I made my write-ups less partisan. I thanked him for the unsolicited counsel and told him I was very grateful. As I was about to leave, he held my hand, pulled me back and said, ?Charley, the belly is protruding oo. Do you want to challenge Papa Ajasco?? I could not help but burst into laughter as I bade him good bye.

It was obvious to all and sundry that the footprint of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in Africa was gradually being erased before Komla came on the scene. He more or less resuscitated a dying brand. Hitherto, the BBC was known for its desire in projecting mostly only negative stories across the length and breadth of Africa. With Komla, they introduced the Africa Business Report where success stories of African business were highlighted. The professionalism and finesse with which he hosted the rebranded ?Focus On Africa? show was admirable, to say the least. For once, I totally agree with Mr. Baloney, our President, Komla was not just a journalist but a worthy ambassador for this country.

Many encomiums have been heaped on him, most of which are extremely touching. As I read the various eulogies, I took pains to look at the authors. Some, I must admit, are men and women of integrity and humility who, though not as famous and revered as Komla, also deserve praise and honour when the man in the black coat finally knocks at their door. Others too are men with little or no integrity.

Among the latter is the bloke who turned himself into Santa Claus and went sharing hampers to cronies and party people. As I compared the humility Komla exhibited and the sheer arrogance that Mr. Santa Claus exudes, I wonder if he has learnt anything from the lamb-like life Komla lived.

I also read a very beautiful tribute from a man whose acerbic tongue lashes at both the young and the old without any consideration. His foul mouth is so pungent that not even an ocean of perfume could neutralize the odour his mouth exudes. I can imagine the tribute I would give him should the man in the black coat visit him before me:

Here lies the remains of a great General Secretary. He helped his party to win political power on countless occasions. But he was a man whose foul mouth respected nobody. He was also a proud human mosquito who hatched blocks and lined his pocket at the expense of the state. Members of his party would sorely miss him, but I doubt if his political opponents or even those sitting on the fence would.

This would be a befitting tribute to the human mosquito, but it is obvious he would not be enthused about it. He has forgotten that his own actions are the tributes he himself is writing before he joins his ancestors.

You see, our daily actions and inactions are the tributes we write about ourselves. They are the best tribute one can ever read about us. Komla?s professionalism, humility, affability, anti-corruption stance and wit were the tributes he wrote himself. All the tributes we write or read about him today are more or less acts of plagiarism from the tributes he wrote. I hope those of us in the land of the living would take a leaf from his beautiful book.

I leave you with the poem I composed when Kwadwo Baah Wiredu went to the land of no return. It is as relevant today as it was then.

Death, oh death!

You, once again, crossed our path

Showed your very true colours

Not afraid to cross borders

Proved you are very capricious and ruthless

Not caring whether one is righteous or selfless

You took our precious gem away

When we desperately wanted him to stay

Left us in a state of paralysis

Made it difficult for any analysis

If ever you were timeless

If ever you were needless

If ever you were senseless

It was now, no more and no less

You took our beloved too soon

Left us in tears and gloom

Though he was one of our best

We are consoled by the fact that he is having eternal rest

Adieu, Komla!

See you next week for another konkonsa, Deo volente!


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