Winston Churchill once narrated a story which he titled, ‘The Height Of Ingratitude.’ According to the story, a little boy was playing on a pier. All of a sudden, he fell off the pier into the water. He did not know how to swim and was in serious danger of drowning. A very kind-hearted young soldier noticed him, and immediately jumped off the pier and swam towards the little boy. He put the boy on his shoulders and brought him back to the pier safely. This young man saved the boy’s life.
The boy had been playing with his colleagues, but his parents were nowhere to be found. The soldier drove the child to his parents’ home and left the boy there. The young man did not even think of receiving any reward. He was a very warm-hearted person, and was extremely happy that he was able to save this little boy’s life.
A few days later, the boy’s parents looked for the soldier. Everybody was helping them to look for him because they thought that they wanted to reward him for saving their child. Finally, they found the soldier working at the pier.
The parents approached the young man, and he immediately said, “You have to come to me? Please, please, I don’t need any reward. You don’t have to give me anything.”
The little boy’s father and mother said, “No! We haven’t come here to give you anything, we’ve come to ask you for our son’s hat! Where is it?”
The young man was shocked. He said, “I tried to save your son’s life. And I did save his life. Now you’re asking me for his hat?”
“Yes,” replied the parents.
How unpleasant ingratitude can be! The young man had saved the life of the parents’ only child, and they were asking for his hat! Instead of giving the soldier a reward or even saying a simple “Thank you,” they were piling pressure on him for a missing hat!
They demanded, “What did you do with our son’s hat? What’s wrong with you? We want to know where the hat is!”
As much as this story is sad and staggering, please brace yourself for another down-hearted account. A young small scale miner who lives in Akwatia in the Eastern Region allegedly heavily supported the New Patriotic Party (NPP) financially to win power. His expectation was that his party would grant him mining concessions to expand his business in the sector. But to his disappointment and disbelief his excavators and other mining equipment were destroyed months after his party won the 2016 elections.
The young man had a huge sum in his bank account so he decided to look around for some other businesses to invest in. However, he was not fortunate. The sad news that the licence of his bankers had been revoked broke his heart. All attempts to get his deposit back proved futile. He lost consciousness and spent some considerable time at the hospital.
As I write, he is struggling to eke out a living. He was heard narrating his ordeal at a washing bay at Osenase near Akwatia. He sounded bitter, and quoted an Akan proverb, “If you have nothing to give to your mother-in-law, you don’t steal from her.”
By Anthony Obeng Afrane, Accra