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Body Shaming In Ghana

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We don't need irrelevant jabs in our society

The phenomenon of body shaming is one that has recently plagued our society. Until recently, body shaming seemed alien to Africans, as stories of how people were being bullied and emotionally abused were only heard of the Americas, Europe and other such places. Africans had a different story, as people of various body shapes and types enjoyed and felt good about their bodies and were appreciated for their thick, heavy backside, among others. The story, however, is different of late. 

Body shaming is not a problem that has only hit our streets of Ghana, but one that almost gotten a permanent place in every facet of our society. In our schools, our kids and siblings are being bullied and called ‘fat’ and ugly, derogatorily. 

At our work places, colleagues are dieting because of body shaming. Sometimes, even in our places of worship, people feel unwelcome because they fear the unpleasant comments they receive about their bodies. Sadly, we have not sat to examine the harsh consequences of this. While body shaming is said to be faced by both male and female, statistics show that women turn to be the most victimized, in this regard.

According to a survey conducted by Yahoo Health, it takes women half their lifetime to feel just half of the body confidence teenage boys experience in adolescence. Even though the survey focused on Americans, the case may be said as indifferent in Ghana.

It is worth noting that body shaming is not only when people make fun about your belly, or buttocks, and breasts, but any part of one’s body that is mocked is being shamed. From head to toe. “See her body like boafloat”. Your breasts like that of old ladies. “Your stomach like something”. “Do you have six packs?” “Don’t mind him, his big head like ball”. Familiar with these phrases? If you’ve ever said such or similar to people, you don’t know the great harm you’ve caused.  I know high school students who have resorted to fasting on almost daily basis, only because they were told they looked fat and ugly.

The experience, as I have noticed, is not only extremely depressing but causes great health issues. My friend of about twenty years has desperately taken up a two week ‘course’ to change her look. I have seen at firsthand how this ‘course’ is taking a great toll on her. She’s malnourished. While she might be losing weight, she is changing into something else.

The chief contributor to this problem, I believe, is the media. Look at the all these body sprays and cosmetic ads on TV. What kind of impression do they seek to make when all we see is well built, muscled, six packed people, and how they are energized and refreshed by such products. The implicit message is that, such is the ideal body.

All others need to ‘fix’ themselves. For the input of social media, the least said, the better. You remember Rashida Black Beauty? Anytime she messes up, all people talk about is her fallen breasts and what have you. The media shapens thoughts, and its influence cannot be understated. And all these quick fix weight loss people haven’t helped as well.

Why have we created this unnecessary standard for ourselves? We have created a standard that has seen many avoid food, with the aim of losing weight. Unnecessary fasting. The resulting effect being that many have contracted ailments like stomach ulcer, any yet, there’s no change in their bodies. ‘Did we go or did we come’, as they literally say in Ga.

Why have we made people feel insecure about themselves? We have robbed them of their confidence and now they are ‘dying’ slowly, only because you said her body is not fine, according to your standard. Don’t get me wrong, I am no way saying getting fit is wrong, but if we have make people feel bad about their body to such an extent that they feel ‘not belonging’ to us any longer, we’ve done no good. We have not helped.

Let’s make a U-Turn from this point. Body shaming is a big deal. People might not be committing suicide about it now, but our comments of people’s bodies might the gradually sending them to their early grave. When you think about mocking the bodies of others, remember the young ‘macho’ man we buried recently. He had all the abs and muscles, but he’s dust now. By all means, make efforts to be fit, but do not let your quest to be fit be in the interest of those who call you names and shame your body.

Our friends in the media, carefully scrutinize what you share on air and online. We’re already battling many diseases. Let us save our young the early hypertension due to our undue pressure and stress. Save our young. Save our colleagues. And save our future.  #SocietyCanGetBetter

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Health & Wellness

Your Brother Must Be A True Reflection of You Beyond Any Mental Derailment

Abdur Rahman Odoi Anum Pobee

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Photo credit: Confidence Timpoh

Our society is veering from its hospitable sense into breeding compatriots with a kind of heart harder than rocks! We see our brethren, known as drug dependants, standing but sleeping, and while walking, talking to no one except themselves! Also, yearning for Tramadol; an extra power just to cheat nature in doing what their natural strength could not do. Others have had a second look of their God given posture due to excessive intake of the Biblical mocker, alcohol! So what have we done with the limited resources we have at our disposal to attempt in getting things bridle, or because they are not bloody-related?

Read Also: If It Is Not God Taking Us Through 2018, What or Who Then?

Ideally, if we had taken our colouring from Allah it would have reoriented our mindset amicably towards the lack of interest we have developed in the affairs of our brethren from other mothers. I have learnt that Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: “A believer is the mirror of his brother”! I was quiet optimistic to get this litmus test fulfilled, so I stood in front of a mirror; And, Oh, I saw no one but my very self! Then I comprehended the basic message, ‘I am and as a matter of fact to love everyone just as I love myself”. Words of Prophets are infallible unless one is suffering from a deliberate intellectual dishonesty and that, he believes not!

A mentally derailed man being neglected

Now that we are exposed to technology, even on our phones, we get to hear news of people suffering from all kinds of mental derailment, some are just an arm’s length away from us! We have neighbours who are drug addicts; weed smoking and lovers of cannabis, Tramadol enthusiasts and alcoholics of the kind, their amorality is so dreadful that dignifying their own conscience has become a turbulent! Okay, let us borrow the ‘Mirror Perspective’ in here, he is a reflection of me or you, right! The least we should do is to advise them but not to repel, this would serve as the first rehabilitation centre which is very scarce in Africa today. We have been bewitched by the advantages of the nuclear family and have let go of the extended family system which is known to us. So helping each other is now a taboo, especially, if the recipient is so far away from our gene, but immediately when he dies, we would exaggerate about his personal profile and send humongous amount of money to cater for his burial service! Instead of fraternizing with them, we rather mimicked the way they talked, walked and do slept while standing and gave them various names to suit our laughable interest! Yet, we see them as nuisance and liabilities, thus they have declined in the moral nuggets of self actualization and righteousness! No wonder, we are the angels of the 21st century, Ayekoo! We have forgotten that this unconcerned and hostile attitude of ours is a rather languishing factor to them which is inimical to their return to ‘home or common sense’!

Read Also: The biasness of society towards women

Many of us have penned down new resolutions already. It is my imploration that we would not forget to factor being caring to the said unfortunate people into it! We must revive our brothers who may have deplorably gone beyond the lowest ebb. You love yourself and, for that matter, you would not compromise falling short of the glory of God. How could you feel comfortable when your other self is going down? If you have bricks of wall where the next bricks are weak, automatically, the bricks would slid in utter ruin. That is the essence of Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) tradition which says that “you are a brick to another brother, supporting each other”. We must show unflinching support and love to those people without not only extending our time and conscious efforts to those among them stemming from rich homes!

Is it the society that has failed us or we have failed the society and ourselves? I would agree to the latter, the scriptures are impeccable but man is always in contention. As for the state, the least said, the better! Today, I have begun to see everyone as a true reflection of me; I will wish for him whatever goodness I prefer for myself, and callousness would be far-fetched of me; if you look at me, I will smile passionately in return to exemplify the togetherness of bricks entangled in a lofty construction. I will not be resentful but will feel your pain, accommodate your worries and keep my covenants to you, O my unfortunate brother!

The development of me must have a correlation to you and the society at large. Let us imbibe this Mirror Perspective into our life and from today we should be breast that apathy anywhere is a threat to sympathy everywhere!

Read Also: Hamamat Montia’s Inspiring Story For All Divorced Women And Single Parents

Do not be a self centered man only but love yourself and provide a livelihood for people around you. That makes you a better human!

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Relationships

A Thoughtful Moment For A Jilted Man

Abdur Rahman Odoi Anum Pobee

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Mr. in the wilderness

Every situation on this earth that comes our way has its own level of pertinence no matter how dreadful it might seem.

Some come and strips you from the hands of people you thoughtfully affectionate but they, ideally love you not; which you are arrogant of! When you are bedevilled and all alone, you may negate the intelligence of a seemingly destabilizing condition! And one of such is being denied love! Especially, a condition that most men strictly abhor! A test that tastes bad certain times and good most often to only a conscious mind!

Little do we know that loneliness attracts discernible thoughts and probably liberates and thus repel the mind from hazardous relationships! It even teaches great lessons to the soul that is ready to transform all its sorrows into happiness by inclining to a positive drive, and at the same time, forgetting the bruises and wounds it may have suffered from the hands of yesterday’s terrific situation which was spearheaded by thy fishwife! Never walk away from a condition without learning absolutely nothing from it. That, in the future, would be more excruciating than the previous Armageddon you have encountered because you have wilfully detached yourself from acquiring experience!

Making learning a priority is an appetite for a definite resolution, firmly triggering success, this is vital in the life of ours. And have in mind that no situation should penetrate your conscience and arouse any negligence of the sought. Make firm decision as a man and remain steadfast and visionary!

And let us not forget the famous Korean mores on common sense which says that “even a fish would not get into trouble if it kept its mouth shut”.


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Health & Wellness

NHIS To Have A Facelift As President Akuffo-Addo Launches Mobile Renewal Tomorrow

Abdur Rahman Odoi Anum Pobee

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President Nana Akuffo-Addo

After being in existence [National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS)] for a decade and more, or precisely 15 years, it has evident that only 42% of compatriots of Ghana have signed unto the free health care service which the Republic of Ghana provides to its faithful citizens. Although it aims at giving a free medical delivery which is essential to man’s life, the scheme, in the days, has come under severe condemnations from the Ghanaian people. Some of these vituperations are that it does not cover most prescribed medicines, cannot settle the bills of certain laboratory tests, delay in registration, the period of its renewal and many more.

Sample: NHIS Card

President Nana Akuffo-Addo is said to launch the new service of Mobile Renewal of the National Health Insurance Scheme card to augment its services, and to subvert the very challenges subscribers undergo when their cards get expired. This eventful day is slated for tomorrow, 19th December, 2018.

Read also: Atta Mills Regime was entirely a Leagacy of peace

We are well assured that after the piloted project of this mobile renewal at West Mamprusi and Asuogyaman districts of the Northern and Eastern region went successfully, subscribers would now and after its launch, be alerted when their cards are getting nearer to expiration to be abreast that their cards could be deranged if they fail to renew. Renewal fees is been made simple for subscribers to use their mobile money accounts to do so. The launching of the project will start the  implementation of the electronic renewal of NHIS cards with a dedicated short code of [*929#] available on MTN, Vodafone, and AirtelTigo networks.

This means that citizens of Ghana could be at the office or on the comfort of their cozy beds and just dial the digits [*929#] and simply get their National Insurance Scheme Card renewed. There is no more need to waste productive hours to cue for  only a card renewal. Also, more workload is going to be lifted from the staffs of [NHIS], meaning that efficiency would be boasted.

Read also: Education: The case of Africa

We [wassupghana.com] wish the President of Ghana, Nana Akuffo-Addo a successful event tomorrow, and extend solemn thanks to the manager of the Obuasi branch of NHIS, Mr. Confidence Owusu Kontoh who made it fair seeming to the Public on December 4, 2018, of the Scheme’s offing initiative for introducing a mobile renewal.

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