Untitled and Pissed Off

Caution: Rant

I’m about to say some things. And those things will be directed at misogynists, whether they possess a penis or a vagina; because yes – there are many women who are doggedly dedicated to the subjugation of their own sex. As low as a misogynistic man may be, a woman who is devoted to the defeat of those who share her gender is lower than that. She is a grub.

I am about to say some things about Ghanaians and Ghanaian culture, and though those things may (and probably do) apply to other African cultures, I am not here to admonish them. They have their own warriors. If you know you are one of these ‘men’ who gets all in his feelings over words published online, click the ‘x’ on your browser now.

 

In 2010, I visited my father in Ghana and he said something that shocked me during one of our conversations. “I can’t speak for other African nations, but I know that we Ghanaians treat women very badly,” he said.

I’ve told this story before. I’ve recounted how I met his assertion with skepticism. I’ve told anyone who would listen how proud I am to be of Ghanaian heritage, and how –despite all their wealth and global influence – I am grateful to have never been born a woman in Saudi Arabia or any other Arab country. THOSE women have no rights at all. I’d rather be Black, poor and hungry than a woman of living under an obviously repressive Arab regime.

What nonsense I was talking. Five years on, I have discovered what my father was talking about. Middle Eastern countries tell a woman her place and compel her to conduct herself accordingly from the outset. She is not raised to have hopes because of her gender. As cruel as this is, it is nowhere near as fiendish as what Ghanaians do to our girls. Where gender is concerned, Ghanaian society is built on a foundation of deceit, broken promises and lies. We tell ourselves we are progressive and egalitarian, dedicated to the advancement of ALL, but it is not true. Because time and again, Ghanaian men have proven their strength not based on innovation, vision or advancement, but rather based on the oppression of Ghanaian women.

A Ghanaian man is only strong when he makes women around him look/feel/act weak.

Today we got news that 19 year old college student Ewuraffe Orleans Thompson, who reported that she had been raped by broadcaster KKD, has withdrawn her rape case from court, because she is “no longer interested” in pursuing it. Now, take a long hard look at that sentence and tell me immediately what’s wrong with it. Most intelligent people can already gather what has happened here, and how this girl got to this point, but I’ll help the rest of y’all out:

  • We know how old she is.
  • We know her name
  • We know she reported an alleged attack by a beloved Ghanaian personality
  • Though I did not insert it into the sentence, anyone with access to the internet knows where this girl lives and goes to school.

How, and furthermore, WHY do we know all this? This is precisely the sort of divulging of information rape advocates in America have fought against (and successful won over) for years. There is no reason to publish the name of a rape victim for a myriad of reasons. This child – and she IS a child – is 19 years old. She is still under the care and protection of her parents. She has barely begun her tertiary education. Publishing this information about her is literally akin to assaulting her all over again. Who knows what her future in Ghana will be, with a society that has devoted itself to lowering the posture of women? You think that’s hyperbole? Listen to what your “relationship counselors” say on the radio about women! Listen to your mega-pastors misquote the Bible and tell women they will rot without the proposal of marriage of a man to save them! Listen to an MP come to parliament floor and THEN go on national media to advocate for the stoning of women. Now go to your social media feed and look at the kinds of things men AND women are saying about this girl, despite the fact that four more women came forward in the wake of this revelation to divulge how KKD raped them in their teens and ‘tweens. Let’s not forget that William Nyarko, formally of the Chronicle, recently admitted that his publication routinely killed stories about KKD and his preying on ‘small girls’ in an effort to protect him.

Image widely circulated of the wrongly identified victim.

Image widely circulated of the wrongly identified victim.

Now you tell me: how is a 19 year old girl supposed to stand against a system that was designed to destroy her? When it comes to KKD, the media was – and IS – singularly bent on protecting their own, with Citi FM leading the charge in the most abysmal display of a lack of journalistic ethics. There is no way this outlet and the others like TV3 and co. would have gotten away with what they have done to Ms. Thompson in a civilized society. In a vagrant display of intimidation, they hounded her for every tidbit of information they could find and published it, some times without verifying facts. Need I remind anyone of the supposed image of Ms. Thompson in a backless dress that went viral? That was actually a picture of Grace Omane, who threatened to sue all the media houses distributing images of her and tagging her as the alleged victim.

Tell me again: how does a girl/woman gather the strength to fight for justice in a toxic climate such as Ghana’s?

The problem with Ghana is Ghanaians. Secretly, we are convinced of our own superiority. We think certain things can never happen in Ghana. @Ayawuku actually alludes to this on a blog she wrote recently entitled Trigger where she discusses a bout she had with depression. When she tried to broach the topic with an aunt whom she felt would identify with or at least acknowledge what she was feeling, she was shot down with the words “You have been brainwashed,” and informed only white people suffer from depression. This is why there are “no suicides” in Ghana. People either stumble to their deaths from a balcony or accidentally overdose on some pills. In order to be truly mentally ill, you have to be drooling on yourself and eating your own shit. Similarly, this is also why there are “few rapes” in Ghana; because if you don’t scream and your assailant happens to be powerful – a chief, a pastor, a radio DJ – you are an attention seeking harlot who wants her 15 minutes of fame at the expense of a “good man”.

I’ve said before that I don’t know if KKD raped that girl, but I know for a fact that he is a predator and a nasty ass man. I know this because just a week after I published my story, my cousin contacted and told me how KKD got grabby with her outside of his bathroom, but she managed to fight him off. When she’s ready, she’ll tell her story. I know he’s nasty because of the four other women who were brave enough to tell, but too scared to reveal their identities. And I know for certain that after today, fewer Ghanaian women will feel confident enough to come forward and name their attackers, and Ghanaians can move forward believing that theirs is a just and civilized society, albeit a false assumption.

 

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8 thoughts on “Untitled and Pissed Off

  1. jahbuu

    wow. I am surprised by your exaggerated comparisons with the middle eastern practice. you are very wrong in all account. we may pretend but don’t make it read like it is better elsewhere. i don’t know where you got your idea from but i now women are treated right where i come from. to put a wide bracket over Ghana and dress us up in such a distasteful write is not only wrong but it reeks of ignorance.

    A supposed raped case don’t represent Ghana and that is not to say it is insignificant but to base your conclusion on this and cut us deep is wrong.

    1. Malaka Post author

      Your assessment is absolutely imbecilic, and I would have started off my reply to you in a kinder fashion had you not made reference to “reeking of ignorance”. I’ll say it again: You are an uninformed imbecile.

      Did you not read the myriad of examples I cited? Are you not aware of how leaders of religious institutions in this country debase women on a regular basis? One has only to look at the likes of Obinin kicking a pregnant woman in the gut to “deliver” her as just ONE of many examples. Have you read the stats on rape from any of the resources in the country? As many as 95% of rapes go unreported because of fear and stigma. LOOK IT UP. By why should you want to? Eh? You are happier living in your myopic bubble, thinking everything is good and right in your country. Do you know how many thousands of girls are trafficked for sex in Ghana, or how many girls are raped by teachers, watchmen, or classmates before they’ve finished puberty?
      You imbecile!
      Investigate the lives of Ghanaian women beyond the four walls of your home before you come here and talk and tell me I reek of ignorance. The gains that were made in the 50’s have all been but lost in favor of this sick male-serving regime. Poke your head out of the clouds and smell the see reality. KKD’s case is but a symptom of what’s wrong with Ghanaian society where women’s rights and sex is concerned. For every Ewuraffe Thompson who speaks up, there are hundreds more who keep silent just so men like you can go to bed at night with your false piety and clear conscience.

      *Tuewww!*

      1. Jon cole

        Most of the things this writer says about Ghanaian men and Ghanaian culture are untrue. The fact that her father may be an example or holds a certain view does not make it true. Check our history and culture and you would realize that women are held in high esteem in Ghanaian culture contrary to what is being asserted. If not why would the Akan’s for instance have a system where Queenmothers play a crucial role in the enstoolment of chiefs.
        Find out when women were given a right to vote in Europe or have a role to play in politics. At a time when women in Great Britain could not vote and did not have a say in politics, women were involved in politics and a woman in Ghana was controlling and leading a whole army to fight the British.

        This writer talks about women being badly treated in Ghana but gives no concrete examples or factual basis for that conclusion. How are women treated badly in Ghana? You seem to agree so maybe you can provide some concrete facts to substantiate it. And please don’t cite examples of rape or the suppression of rape prosecution as evidence because it not peculiar to Ghana.

        I have lived most of my life in Ghana and have lived outside Ghana as well and can say with confidence that what this writer is saying is untrue.

        Issues of equal pay for equal work. Women’s right. Domestic violence and the like are not peculiar to Ghana. I can tell you it’s even worse in some European and American States where women don’t get paid as much as men for doing the same kind of work. Where women cannot be the boss in certain corporations or suffer abuse because the institution is male dominated and women in these countries have had to fight against various forms of discrimination by men against women.

        The Ghana I know is a country where women are treated with respect generally. Where women compete with men and are given equal opportunity.
        Men have generally been more powerful all over the world over the years because they have in the past been the ones who had the financial power, but this has changed and is changing all over the world.

        Read this writer’s ranting again and show me how Ghanaian women are badly treated and why you are in support of such factually empty accusations.

      2. jahbuu

        The descriptions accorded me in your reply does nothing to the substantive matter you earlier posted which attracted my attention to read and make a comment. Well, I am sane and nothing in my post suggests imbecilic tag from you. You have an opinion and it is permissible to say what you want but to tell me I am an imbecile because I disagreed with you is horrendous and I am scandalized. I deserve some respect for taking time off my work to read your blog… ***smiles*****

        Now to the matter, have you conducted any research to make conclusion of 95% unreported rape case. I guess you have no data to corroborate your wild conjecture. Don’t talk out of pure unbridled emotions which does nothing but sends wrong message to the world.

        I appreciate Jon Cole’s effort because he has saved me time.

        Again I repeat don’t make one case the reference point to all other cases.

  2. Aba

    I mostly agree with what you write but on this occasion, I am afraid I have to beg to differ. It is a real shame that the rape victim had to withdraw her case and it does not take a genius to work out why. It would serve as a deterrent for other young victims to come forward in the future and that is a real pity because it would mean some very slimy characters getting away with murder. Where I tend to disagree with you is your generalizations about gender in Ghana. I am not for one minute trying to excuse the behavior of certain pastors and their ilk! I for one have no time for pastors at all. Again , just because a member of parliament or some other male in position of authority makes some idiotic pronouncements does not mean men in Ghana hate women or that women are treated badly. I know all sorts of things go no in the society and I am in no shape or form condoning it but it is no more than what goes on elsewhere, advanced societies included. If I had not grown up in Ghana, reading your article might have given me the impression that being born a girl in Ghana would have meant being a second class citizen. That was never my experience! I grew up knowing I was as intelligent and as important as the next person and infact I attended a girls’ school where it was instilled in us that we could be whatever we wanted to be in future through sheer hard work as such most of the old girls are in positions of high authority in Ghana and around the world!

  3. thebellower

    Aba I appreciate your observation but I think what is crucial the the fault in the observation is your ending for which the author has already made provisions in her argument. In Ghana, girls can go to what are considered the most respected schools, or the most respected girls’ schools; told that they can be anything they want to be, but in the end of it all that declaration comes with disclaimers that imply women are second class.

    The lives of the successful women we know may have been very different if they were to have spoken up each time they faced sexual harassment at work. How many successful Ghanaian women have children from more than one father and have not been required at one point in time to justify that situation? We cannot deny that we as a society are indifferent to male sexual immorality and overly vocal about female sexual modesty. The double standards, which are often geared to making women feel worse about themselves or responsible to society on matters personal to themselves when this is not the message imposed upon men, inherently put women in a position of second class citizen. They are not allowed to write or circumvent the rules they must only play by them and adapt when someone else changes them.

    It might not be explicitly put as such (although for the discerning female I think it is) but it is the message.

  4. Kofi

    19 years is not a child. The same way you advocate that the identity of an adult alleged victim of rape be protected, so should the identity of the alleged rapist. Equity is Equality.

    1. Malaka Post author

      Can she come to America and legally order a drink? No. She’s a child. Stop skirting the wider issue, which is Ghana’s abysmal gender record. 😐

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