Popular Ghanaian actress, Lydia Forson has taken to her website, lydiaforson.com, to condemn the massive criticisms being heaped upon Member of Parliament for Assin North Constituency, Kennedy Agyapong, over his sexist comments against Charlotte Osei, the Electoral Commision Chairperson. Lydia finds the tongue lashes against the MP hypocritical. She therefore urges critics to leave Ken Agyapong alone! See what she says:
Why is everyone trying to give Hon. Ken Agyapong such a hard time? What did he do that was so wrong that you’re all up in arms and fighting to “out condemn him”.
Please let the man be!
You created him, you urged him on, you cheered him each time he went lower than the last, you revered him, you feared him and in the end you helped create the monster that he pretends he is.
You gave him ears, air time, screen time and an atmosphere to operate.
In the end you helped create a man who’s a sum total of the majority of thoughts, believes and actions of a largely mysoginist society ruled by men.
So really, what’s new here?
What’s he said that’s so different from what he and many other men have echoed on several occasions?Is this the first time he’s made such outrageous comments? Is this the first time he’s used vile, repugnant, oppressive and abusive words towards an individual particularly a lady?
Didn’t he say worse about Afia Schwarzenegger? Didn’t he all but call her a harlot? Didn’t he say she had HIV? Didn’t he sit on radio and TV to make these statements? Weren’t women in the building and around him?
So what’s new here?
Or wait, let me guess he did it against someone we “like, respect or deem worthy” or someone that interest or benefits us in a way.
Now it all makes sense.
Suddenly Feminists and Activist have come out of the woodworks to condemn his statements and support the EC Boss.
Why are you suddenly finding his words offensive and out of line?
What took you so long and where were you all this while?
Let me guess, you were too busy getting manicures and sipping on tea with bites of short bread deciding on what colour to paint their nails.
Afia and the many others weren’t worth your energy, after all she brought it upon herself, as many of you wrote on your wall. Some went as far as saying, she’d attacked the Ministry of Gender in the past and so didn’t deserve attention.
Unfortunately, and it really pains me to write this, but I have to agree with the NPP party financier Anthony Karbo.
His unreasonable acertation that the opposition doesn’t in anyway have to call Ken Agyapong to order, especially since it isn’t the first anyone has made a statement like that against a woman, is disgustingly true.
“When the NDC’s Halidu Haruna said unmarried women above 30 years are prostitutes the party was out there supporting him. When Ursula Owusu suffered verbal attacks no highly placed woman in government such as Gender Minister, Nana Oye Lithur said a word about that.” Even though he sounds incredibly crass and shallow minded, he has a point, regardless of how politically motivated it is. He questions why Ken should be brought to order when so many others have done same and haven’t been chastised.
A few weeks ago, I was on Gifty Anti’s “The Stand Point” when I said we can’t pick and choose who we support based on whether we liked them or not, we can’t be occasional activists or feminists; we have to stick to our cause regardless of who wants our help, put us down or doesn’t like us.
Unfortunately the noise all over social media is a testament to my statement that, we only support a cause based on who it’s for.
You can’t support women and so easily be a part of a”crucify her campaign” based on what she wears, who’s she’s slept with or her lifestyle.
Thats not an activists, that’s an occasionalist…
It somewhat mirrors the built up of the Ghanaian society—-the deep internal problems of a large number of women in this patriarchal society always struggling to choose between their own decency and whether to pull their panties down for a male boss before even getting a job at low levels or not. We can pretend this does not exist.
There’s no way without evidence a man and in this case a Member of Parliament should be able to throw into the air such contemptuous statement about any hard working woman with unfettered arrogance.
His actions ought to be condemned and be called for what it’s by all—and I have seen almost every corporate woman on my Facebook timeline dishing out replies and others hiding behind innuendos to make a case for themselves and Charlotte Osei.
My problem with this is not about the taste of the statement made, for that, it is undeniably s*xist and deeply offensive, an indictment on all hard working Ghanaian women.
My problem which many of my colleague writers who have in the past written extensively about the hovering and increasing misogynistic statements being championed by otherwise respected Ghanaians is, we can see a lot of hypocrisy up in the air.
We were all in this country when Dr. Mensah Otabil, Bishop Duncan Williams and some men of God with celestial arrogance made equally appalling and misogynistic statements about women—-with the exception of actress-Lydia Forson and a few other women who stood up with their keyboards against these proclamations from the pulpit, the many women I have seen condemning Kennedy Agyepong today were silent.
In fact, some of them I know sat in the same churches where these extensive chauvinistic statements were made and they continue to return to these same churches to listen to these same men each week.
It does therefore, seem like, you are allowed to be a misogynist and loudly say every nasty thing about women as long as you a pastor—-only politicians are not sanctioned to do the same.
Many people I know within the Ghanaian writing and blogging-sphere, a lot of them being women, have said, they wouldn’t waste their time writing about Kennedy Agyepong’s issue because the hypocrisy of the Ghanaian female population in somewhat granting immunity to certain persons to freely be offensive to women and denying others the egregious luxury to swim in the same river is unacceptable.
Check your social media timeline to see the women deservingly lambasting Kennedy Agyepong and try to remember if you can, whether you saw these same people condemning the various pastors whose inherent prejudice against women came out of their mouths loudly.
I didn’t hear any of these pastors ever apologising and we didn’t care, so why do we think Kennedy Agyepong would? Of course he should—-but where is the precedent?
We are a society of hypocrites—-we need to demand equal respect for women from everyone, irrespective of the person being a religious or political leader, our selective condemnation does not help in achieving the general decency needed.
To be taken serious, we have to be consistent—what is true is consistent.
We can again blame our patriarchial society for this, but for how long are we going to get away with that excuse? If we’re able to condemn the mysoginistic statement against the EC Boss and keep quiet when it’s against another, surely it means we KNOW better, we’re just refusing to DO better…