In one of his parables, Jesus tried to explain to the Pharisees and to the discernment of his followers, the worth of a soul, a human being. He goes at length to illustrate this by recounting a parable of the shepherd, in which is embedded this interpretation.
Jesus said, on his way home, a shepherd found that one out of his sheep was missing. Without a blink or a thought, the shepherd ignored any likely event with the remaining 99, as he dashed back to where he left off, in search for this lost sheep.
The above resonates with a crude philosophy by the Israeli Defence Force, which believes that an Israeli life is worth a 1,000 Arab or Palestinian lives. For this discriminatory reference, Israel is plunged into war, if an Israeli is captured, kidnapped or killed. But in one such encounter where an Israeli soldier on border duties was abducted, as expected, the Israeli Defence Force rolled out its tanks to Southern Lebanon with hope to find their missing colleague. Sadly, that military campaign was instigated by a trap set by Hezbollah to suck in their arch enemy for a sound beating.
However, it still remains one of its definitive moments as a country. Whenever and wherever an Israeli life is in danger or it becomes necessary to retrieve the body of a slain Jew, Israel would do everything in the world to do so any day and any time. And Israel is not alone in this.
The US government has a similar defence policy strategy. World history and current affairs are replete with many examples, where the United States of America would gladly go to war, even if it is in support of an ally. Since it’s first successful military incursions outside it’s borders, the US has gone ahead to build military bases and stationed equipment and men to go to battle at the least provocation.
Come to think of what the government of Ghana is telling parents whose wards are in school; and out of fear and panic over reported increasing spread of covid-19 at these schools including a case of death at KNUST High School. The Minister of Health, Agyemang Kwaku Manu, has snarled back at parents, telling them closing down schools for these cases of Covid-19 in such schools would be defeatist and an act of government cowardice.
His Deputy Minister, Dr Oko Boye, also said government wouldn’t heed to such calls for the closures of schools unless cases reach 15%. This standard set by World Health Organisation was disputed previously, when the presidential adviser on Covid-19 presented the case, at a time cases in the country were yet in hundreds. Government further stated that critics should be informed by data and science before engaging in such criticism.
At a point, the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, cautioned all commentators on Covid-19 to refrain from doing so, because they lacked the qualifications to do so. And President Akufo Addo hasn’t missed an opportunity to single out the NDC for vilification, accusing it for fomenting such troubles or behind it.
But listening to a mother who spoke in a rather hoarse and angry voice laced with choking sobs, she complained that she hasn’t been allowed to visit her only child or withdraw her from school. This fear and panic situation was exacerbated after a student at KNUST High School died, three hours after complaining of feeling sick and without help from school authorities, said to be afraid to go to his aid because they suspected it was a covid-19 related case.
Soon after schools were reopened for final year students to go back to school to prepare for their final year certificate examinations, Accra Girls’ High School reported six asymptomatic cases. This figure jumped to 55, barely a week later; prompting guardians and partners to troop to schools to demand for the whereabouts of their wards.
The primary function of government is to protect lives and properties much as to develop policies to secure society to cohabit with less apprehension and friction for normal life. Ghana mustn’t be an exception.