The Wahala of a Ghanaian Man

A couple of weeks ago Father’s Day was celebrated so loud in silence as done year after year. Fathers’ seem to have been taken for granted. Well, to him that little is given, little should be expected, right? Not quite, duty and responsibility is engraved in his DNA and that has no price tag. Who is a man in our social cultural settings? Who prepares the Ghanaian man to shoulder the duties and responsibilities of manhood? Ladies buckle your seat-belts, the issue is as relevant to women as it is to men. A man who is alive to his responsibilities equals a woman who is secured. IMG_8621manchie So on a grand quest to discover who a true Ghanaian man is, I interviewed a number of guys and had a focused group discussion with a couple of guys who were part of an association called the Man Initiative at a smoothie bar in Osu, Accra. IMG_3129manchie copyIMG_3130manchieIMG_3131manchieIMG_3126manchie “A man is said to be a matured male who has grown not just physically but mentally and spiritually. He is a leader and a provider, the one who has the cash and ensures that the cash is enough to satisfy everyone around him.” Said Kwaku. “Yet, having a lot of money does not necessary make one a man, rather being responsible and ensuring that the family is comfortable even if it means playing the role of the woman when necessary. I grew up seeing my mother at home doing house chores whilst my dad went out to work, I never saw them quarrel, as a child, I assumed to have same when I grew, but interestingly today’s woman does not only own the fridge but also everything in it. They work as hard as we do and when we quarrel it starts from the bedroom and ends up on social media.”Said David.

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IMG_8625manchie According to the esteemed men I interviewed, any man who is not alive to his responsibilities is a still a boy. But then, what are the responsibilities of a 21st century Ghanaian man? Who shapes and guides him to deal with the hassles and tussles of manhood? Not one out of the men I interviewed have ever had a man-to-man talk with their father or male figures in their lives. The responsibility of manhood hits the man like a hurricane, neither warnings nor preparations. Thanks to the advancement in technology, social media seems to be shaping “small boys” into “big boys” rather than men. IMG_8624manchie Unfortunately, the rate of divorce and fatherlessness is becoming so alarming, in fact career women who are single after age 30 seem to easily opt for single parenthood; in fact single parenthood and being a baby mama has become so fashionable in modern times. The epitome and the basic foundation of any healthy nation is the home.   Indeed the home is the pillar of the nation and a home would be nonexistent without a matured male. If we desire a better nation we need to first strengthen our homes. Which is only achievable if the man as well as the woman is alive to their roles and responsibilities. Today’s woman is fiercely racing after equality inspired by self-search in the discovery of self worth, so her need for a man seem to be dwindling. According to Thomas, women who lived in the past created an enabling environment for men to be men even if they (women) earned more.“If a modern woman earns more than her husband, trouble, she would rub it inside-out, black and blue,”  he said.
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IMG_8620manchie Also, the need to restructure the Ghanaian educational system cannot be over emphasized. The men I interviewed did not deny that they knew very little of their history beyond slavery. How does he develop a sense of pride if all he knows of his past is slavery? Africans’ contributions towards humanity are too enormous to be disregarded. Every African should know of Amenhotep, the very first medical practitioner and a great architect. Or the great rulers of the Nile Valley such as Djoser, Mentuhotep II, Tuthmose III, Amenhotep III, Ramases II, Ramases III the list goes on. These black African men contributed immensely to the civilization of the world and should never, ever be forgotten. IMG_8623manchie In conclusion all four men agreed that the Ghanaian man needs to empty his cup and refill it with the knowledge, values and principles embedded in history. By Ayerkie Narnor||Ghana]]>