At a recent regular weekly meeting of our Kumasi East Rotary Club, Assistant Governor Rotarian Seth Asiama made a presentation on the new Rotary International Theme: PEACE THROUGH SERVICE.
Here is the RI THEME 2012-2013 power point presentation. In a nutshell, first we are introduced to the new Rotary International President, a Japanese gentleman who chose the theme. Then there are some definitions of peace, notably
“Peace is the absence war, violence, and fear.Peace means that you are not in danger of hunger or persecution or the suffering of poverty. Peace can mean freedom of thought and of speech, and of choice, and the ability for self-determination.
Peace can mean security, confidence in the future: a life and home in a stable society.
Peace can mean a sense of happiness, of inner serenity, of calm”
As I listened, I thought, “This is so meaningful to Ghana at this time in her history as she faces elections at the end of the year.”
Our A.G. continued tying in the theme to the Rotary motto of SERVICE ABOVE SELF and detailing Rotary conferences to be held around the world during the year.
At the end of the presentation, the floor was opened for questions and comments.
Of course, Rotarian Four Villages weighed in with his thought on how appropriate it is that the theme for the year coincides with Ghana’s greatest present day challenge, to keep the peace during the December elections despite all the inflammatory rhetoric being spouted by factions and players. I also added I had been pleading with the Ghana Hotels Association, the largest of the hospitality sector’s associations, to start issuing statements stressing how important retaining the peace is during the election period, what a great image Ghana has overseas as a beacon of democracy in a turbulent region, and how catastrophic election violence would be for the Ghanaian hospitality industry.
AN ASIDE: STILL DEAFENING SILENCE THOUGH FROM THE GHANA HOTELS ASSOCIATION…
I continued proposing Rotary organizes a peace conference in Accra the centre of political life in Ghana. I argued that Rotarians are deeply connected to their communities through business and civil society organizations, like Rotary. A Rotary sponsored peace conference would get a lot of public attention.
Oh, would Rotarian Four Villages, a.k.a. madinghana, like to present at such an event. I would do my best impersonation of Mr. Herbert Acquaye, the National President of the Ghana Hotels Association!
Anyways, my fellow Kumasi East Rotarians loved the idea, but want to hold such an event in Kumasi! I am doubtful holding the peace conference here in Kumasi would have the same impact that it would undoubtedly have if held in Accra.