Sustaining Human Life Through Bamboo Plantations

BY: Dan Phale*

Various socioeconomic development indicators point to the horrible fact that most of the people in the world both at individual and family levels are living below the poverty line. And an exhaustive look at all the relevant issues can reveal that the global human population is rapidly going high, while such vital resources that are required for us to sustain our livelihood are depleting in quantities day by day. Surely this makes it very difficult for mankind to cope with the ever rising of living. Therefore we are supposed to brainstorm in order to find viable solutions to the existing socioeconomic woes.

In this article we explore the possible ways through which bamboos can be of a great use in raising up the profile of human life in socioeconomic arenas. However it is good, in the first place, for us to become familiar with some of the basic facts about the bamboos.

First things first. As we may all be aware, bamboo plants can grow well in many areas world over. Whereas the scientific tacticians say that the annual rainfall of 900-4000mm and temperature ranges of 20-38°C are the ideal climatic conditions for the growth and development of bamboo plantations. It is further reported that bamboo plantations can as well be established in areas with different soil types.

It is not a secret that many people have been traditionally using bamboos in the construction of structures meant for human dwelling and for food storage such as granaries; and for making baskets and similar products… But recently I observed through one of the popular television stations in the world that a bamboo can be confidently be taken as the best alternative raw material in the manufacturing industry sector, with a particular example of the production of bicycle frames… Meanwhile only very few countries in Asia, and Ghana in my beloved African continent are so far on record to have embarked on an innovative industrial program of making bicycle frames instead of an all-metal raw material.


From the photo it is crystal clear that a spirit of innovative investment is what we need, and I’m proud to say that “Surely, a bamboo has the efficacy to help us enhance the socioeconomic status of mankind.”

It is in this regard that commercial bamboo farming can be the ideal approach if are ready to achieve the sustainable socioeconomic development while conserving the ecosystem vis-à-vis. Therefore, what is required is that those who have the technical expertise should be called upon to train quite a great number of people at all levels on issues of the plantation management as well as the manufacturing processes.

High unemployment rates can soon or gradually become a thing of the past because many people may become the entrepreneurs. The pressure of transport challenges can be greatly eased. And the fact that many individuals, families, villages, and countries can achieve self reliance cannot be overemphasized.

Beauty Contest Is Undesirable

BY: Dan Phale*

According to the old wise folks in my homeland beauty is an empty calabash. Surely the only thing which beauty holds is pride; and pride only goes the length that one can spit. It is in this view that I hereby present my strong argument against the notion of beauty contests.

Let me begin by saying that I have never been – and shall most unlikely be – convinced as to why really some people do organise and/or conduct, or participate in, what they term as beauty contest or beauty pageant. Except that what I mostly observe is an exhibition of nudity in the public, and nothing important. Usually the contest focuses on judging and ranking the physical attributes of the ladies; and sometimes it is based on their personality traits, intelligence, talents, and answers to the Judges’ questions in an interview.

Secondly, I feel all the inclination to, and I hereby, draw the attention of all and sundry to a biblical philosophy that any person was created by, and in the image of, one God, as per Genesis 1: 27. And for purposes of English language, an antonym of a word beautiful is ugly. In this regard the implication is that the objective of the beauty contests is to single out the beautiful ladies from the ugly ones. Now look, if one lady is singled out and crowned as the Queen of beauty, then who will be the Queen of the ugly ladies? Ironically the one God who created us all does not have two different images, the one which beautiful and the other one which is ugly. In all the wisdom, I find the whole idea of having beauty contests to be very irrational, inhumane, and discriminatory. Oh yes…!

Now let us look at some of the issues that are involved in the process of searching for the socalled Queen of beauty. Actually the process leaves quite a lot to be desired. Ladies longing for a title and crown are subjected to various examinations, two of which are what are in this article. The contestants are paraded, whereby each one catwalks, sexily swaying her hip. And what baffles me most is the fact that more often than not the contesting ladies do put on scanty clothes which would not be recommended or accepted by my late grandparents who were the strong defenders and advocates of our cultural values… I mean, it is absurd to suggest that a lady’s nakedness be a measure of her beauty. In a sharp contrast, scanty dressing is a factor which gradually triggers moral indecency among the youths. In other words, nakedness and beauty are two different issues altogether.

Additionally it sounds very funny to witness a lady being interviewed by the so-called judges on issues that are not at pal with beauty… I remember having laughed my lungs out one day a few months ago when I watched on one of the popular television stations where irrelevant issues arose.

What is your highest qualification, young lady?” one judge asked.

Im a degree holder in social science studies,” the young lady answered proudly.

Why do you want to become a Queen of beauty in this country?” the second judge asked.

Let me assure this board that I shall ensure that I and my fellow youths should contribute towards social and economic development of our country if I am crowned Queen of beauty.”

Kkkkkkkkk, the impression here is that without emerging victorious in the beauty contest that young lady would not take part in the social and economic endeavours of her country,” I laughed before switching off the television.

Of course somebody may attempt to defend the notion of staging beauty contests on a mere basis of a long historical background, citing beauty festivals which were celebrated in the ancient world during the medieval era… Nonetheless, we don’t have to emulate such practices that are more likely to weaken our human dignity in terms of cultural and moral merits.

In effect these contests have the viability to make people have wrong perception that girls and women should be valued principally for their physical appearance. Furthermore this idea exerts great psychological pressure on ladies to conform to the conventional beauty standards as set by the organisers of the contests. As such ladies are prompted to spend unnecessary amount of money and time on fashion, cosmetics, and hairdos in an attempt to adorn themselves. At times ladies are negatively influenced to go for slimming therapeutic programs to the extent of harming their own health.

In a nutshell, a beauty contest is undesirable everywhere. Otherwise beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.

Issues Of Malaria And Economic Development

By: Dan Phale*

Only healthy people are capable of advancing their lives in all areas of socioeconomic development. Hence a need that we must take time to look at issues of one of the killer diseases worldwide. The facts herein are those which I have managed to gather through a research which I have carried out so far.

Throughout the web of statistical information on health issues there is one disease which is seen to be as dazzling like diamond as one of the leading fatal diseases in the world. And this is none other than malaria which is a mosquito-bite infectious disease affecting human beings and other animals. Health experts say that it is mostly transmitted by female anopheles mosquitoes. They also say that at times transmission occurs by direct inoculation of the infected red blood cells through blood transfusion or needles.

Some of the signs and symptoms include headache, general body pains, high fever, vomitting, anaemic conditions, and feeling tired. Of course in some cases these signs and symptoms are akin to those of typhoid fever, which is why it is highly advisable that one should not think of administering to oneself medicinal drugs without consulting the trained personnel.

Treatment of malaria is somehow complex on account of the emergence of drug resistant mosquito vectors coupled with the indisputable fact that every year large populations of people get infected in many parts of the globe. At the same time we take cognizance of the fact that economy in many countries is not sufficiently vibrant to enable such large populations to get cured from malaria because most of the rural masses are poor. Furthermore it is very sad to note that some health workers steal the same medicinal drugs which are already inadequate. In this view prevention is relatively cheaper than medical treatment.

It follows, then, that we have a duty to be proactive all the times than being reactive. All the grasses and stagnant water are the breeding areas of mosquitoes. Hence a risk of transmission of malaria becomes higher in those environments. Therefore, it is very significant that we must ensure that all the times our surroundings are cleared of unwanted vegetation, and that the stagnant water is drained in a bid to break the life cycle of mosquitoes. Other ways of mosquito-bite control are by spraying insecticides, and using treated bed nets… Suffice to mention herein that many people – one of whom being my friend on Facebook – believe in a myth that the bed nets are treated with chemicals which have the potential to make men impotent; and this means that there is a great need of civic education.

There is, however, a grain of hope that one day the scientists will come up with antimalarial vaccine which, currently, is under trials in countries like Ghana, Kenya, and Malawi. May the almighty God grant 

Blood Is Thicker Than Water

By: Dan Phale*

There are two brothers who undoubtedly seem to be blissfully blessed in the sense that they have a construction film which they run together. Their names are Blessings and Madalitso, whereas the latter happens to be younger than the former. In fact I know them too well because they stay with their families and their father in the royal palace which is in proximity to my dwelling house.

Blessings and Madalitso have been living under a very strong blood bond such that they have been inseparable in all their undertakings. Their father is a king who, according to their tradition, is at liberty to choose one of his grandsons as eligible to take over the throne when he dies. As a matter of fact at the moment Blessings has a six-year old son while the younger one is not a father which gives an obvious idea that Blessings’s son may become the next king.

Over the past decade they relentlessly strived to mobilise the necessary resources and/or machinery in order to establish their film, “Two Brothers Construction Company“, which they run together. Really an Igbo proverb is true that the world is like the goat‘s udder. It does not produce milk unless you pinch and squeeze at it… Through thick and thin today their company is a force to reckon with even across the national boarders. With countless contracts they have so far been awarded they have become very rich to the extent that others are usually jealous of their status.

Green with envy, one person last week visited a sorcerer with an intention of getting the evil powers to disrupt the family unity that has ever existed between Blessings and Madalitso.

You are welcome to the shrine,” said the sorcerer. “What can I do for you, young man?”

I want the two brothers to part ways so that their industry should collapses,” the jealous young man answered.

The great man, these people are very conceited… Besides they don‘t want to offer me any job opportunities on the pretext that we are not qualified. Tell me, Ill pay anything that you need for your work, please.”

The sorcerer performed his diabolic work. And barely two days later Madalitso accidentally killed his brother’s son by hitting him with his motor vehicle as he was reversing in order to drive out of the palace, escorting his wife, who was carrying a boy in her womb, to the antenatal clinic.

So you deliberately murdered my only son such that when your son is born becomes the next king in this land…” Blessings groaned.

Its not like that my brother. I can’t even understand how the dark cloud has covered us… I mean, why would I do that to you?” Madalitso denied the allegations.

Solomon is best known to be a very prayerful king, and such a peace maker. Having known that there is now bad blood between his sons, yesterday he called them in a bid to reunite them. It was during the session with the royal council members that Madalitso amazed them.

My king, in the interest of tranquility of the entire land, Ive decided to plead with you that you should not pick my son as the heir to the throne. In fact I pray that God should bless my brother with another male child to succeed you when you die…” Madalitso knows pretty well the proverb which says that for the sake of peace hard decisions must be made.

Blessings quickly understood that his brother had no blameworthy mind in the death of his son. The king is very happy that the two brothers are once again living in harmony… Suffice that the king’s prayers have been received by the heavens. And everybody has been convinced that indeed blood is thicker than water. So far the evil jealous young man has come in the open to confess what he did in conjunction with the ritualist to take away peace from the royal palace.

Coincidence Of Poverty And Agony

By: Dan Phale*

The majority of us do have the idea that to be a poor person is like to be nonexistent in this world. And this is really why poverty is the most dreaded enemy of our life merely because it brings about numerous indescribable challenges in our midst.

But, on the other hand this could be a misleading notion to some extent. With or without worldly riches, life goes on. In fact even the very rich elite of this world do perish on an account of lack of prudence in their ways of life as seen through their decisions and reckless or negligent actions and/or omissions. It is, therefore, a requisite that everybody should be sufficiently sagacious in order to avoid falling into an abssy of problems.

In this article we look at a pathetic story of Sarah, the first born in a family of three children whose father was once a multimillionaire called Kenneth. In their family they had everything at their disposal, ranging from food, clothing, and luxuries. In other simple terms their life was a paradise on earth. However, owing to gross financial and/or economic mismanagement, Kenneth lost most of what had for some years brought glory and smile to him and the entire family. Thus he became as average as all other people in a poverty stricken country.

A proverb says wealth is dew… And this means that all and sundry must exercise fiscal discipline.

Everything had to change drastically about five years ago when Kenneth died in a road accident, leaving all his dependants hopeless. Although the bereaved worked hard in their crop fields fortune could not smile on them any more. Therefore, they were forced by adverse circumstances to start living on one meal only every day, and this challenge culminated into a problem of malnutrition and the related problems… Whereas in terms of dressing they had to put on rags. Fancy that…!

Just a year on, their mother fell chronically sick. And no any single child had any viable idea what to do in order to make ends meet. At that time Sarah had just clocked about sixteen years of age. She suggested that she should go to the nearest city in quest of any kind of work in efforts to raise money which could be used to sustain their livelihood and also to allow their frail sick mother get a better medical attention in a private hospital.

But when Sarah went to the city her wishes and hope got so elusive that she was kidnapped and trafficked to a neighboring country. She was detained in a brothel where her life was exposed to very great risks, for she was forced into prostitution life. No wonder sooner than later she contracted HIV. In this regard life continued being all hell to her such that she couldn’t figure out any reason for her to continue living on earth. But long at last some international human rights activists rescued her from the ordeal and was brought back home, whereas the perpetrators were brought to book.

Upon getting home she narrated details of all the miserable events she had gone through. But this could not do any good to her mother and her young sisters at all. Her mother’s ailing health condition worsened to the extent that she died of heart attack. What a grief to a family which was already under a spell of abject poverty and the related agony.

Meanwhile the poor Sarah is appealing to all people of good will and/or organisations to give her and her two young sisters a charitable hand so that they can get out of the predicament they are in.

The King In Dilemma

By: Dan Phale*

It is not a hidden secret that a ruler feels being at the top of life with his subjects showering abundant glory, honour, and praises at him, and giving him different gifts which are intended to buy favours from him in turn… And all is well when the king’s reign is under such circumstances that would not erode peace from his palace because it is such peace that is expected to flood over to the entire territory. As a matter of fact there are quite several factors which intricately influence peace and stability in the kingdom.

Here is a story of Chidule, a man who is not only a polygamist, but also a King for the Chidule clan of people. He lives together with his two wives, Lilian and Agatha, at the royal palace. Lilian is the first wife whereas Agatha is the second; and in accordance with their culture, in the event that the King marries more than one wife the first one is automatically the first lady, otherwise a Queen. In fact Lilian is married to the king for well over three years but has been barren to give birth to a Prince while Agatha has been the king’s second wife for two years only and is a mother of a son born to the king.

In this case Chidule has an uphill to climb following a very difficult situation which has so far given rise to a tension in the palace as the two wives have been at loggerheads all the times, scrambling for a status of a Queen. One day last year Lilian and Agatha picked a fierce quarrel with each other.

Agatha, why do you often address me in a disrespectful manner as if you don‘t know that I am a Queen in this kingdom?” asked Lilian angrily.

Shame on you…! How does a kings barren wife come to be called a Queen?” argued Agatha with a tone of ridicule.

How dare you contend with me, Agatha? Don’t you know I am the kings first wife?

A fight broke and this resulted in each sustaining injuries. And when the news was brought to the attention of the King, a solution had to be found. So after some deliberations the royal council unanimously agreed that Lilian should be given a grace period of one more year, while Agatha was given the last caution against being disrespectful in any way to the first wife.

The decision gave Lilian a chance to think of a way out of the ordeal.

I think I am only paying the price of a series of abortions which I carried out when I was a young unmarried lady…” Lilian accused herself, adding, “However this is my opportunity to do something.”

She secretely bought materials to be putting on with a purpose of blindfolding the King that he should think that she had now conceived. Simultaneously she conspired with a certain doctor to produce a fake medical report in support of this, insinuating that because of some reproductive complications she should not make love with the King until the time of delivery. In getting this, the King felt quite ecstatic that the palace would no longer have a similar controversy.

At the expiry of nine months, Lilian sneaked away from the palace and went to a certain hospital, walked into the maternity ward and stole therein a baby boy that she took to the palace. And the clueless King was all smiles, while Agatha maintained that she was the first to give the King a son hence deserving to be called the Queen. Very ecstatic on the one hand, and annoyed on the other, the King was prompted to evict Agatha, little knowing what life had in store for him and the entire land.

Sooner than later, police officers came to the palace and apprehended Lilian for the offence of child stealing, for somebody spotted her in the hospital committing the offence… At the moment Chidule is in dilemma as to whether to remarry Agatha or take a new wife. He knows that a home without a mother is like a desert, and the kingdom needs to have a heir. In fact he feels that he hastily evicted Agatha from the palace.

Elderly People Are Not Witches

By: Dan Phale*

The world chooses to classify and/or adress certain classes of people as very important persons (VIPs), Right Honourables, or Excellencies based on their respective positions and/or roles that have an impact on growth and development of mankind in various societies. But the system seems not to recognise a certain group of persons who are the most important on earth; and these are the elderly people.

Ironically some of the so-called VIPs are well known for bad manners and/or unjust acts such that they do not deserve these titles, not at all…!

For a moment let us look at all the best influence that we can get from the elderly people. They are very wise… They are the best custodians of moral and cultural values which, virtually, are the pillars of human life… Certainly, they have a vast experience of life on earth, hence know how to find solutions to challenges or problems.

It follows then that, to the best of my conscience, our grandparents should have been the first group of people to be given these titles… Why…? As a matter of fact every human being has a tap root of life, and the tap root is none other than one’s own grandparents. Without grandparents there would not be somebody’s parents, and similarly there would never be life. By virtue of the foregoing, I hereby grant everyones grandparents a VIP status.

Contrary to the realities and/or expectations, it is very pathetic to note that nowadays many of us have labelled our grandparents as witches or wizards. Most of the elderly people are, now and again, accused of having a sorcery hand in somebody’s death, claims which have no factual basis at all… Worse than this is the fact that the elderly people are vulnerable to violent crimes in which some are brutally assaulted and/or murdered for offences which they did not commit. Suffice to mention herein that there are unscrupulous persons who just want to rob the aged people of their wealth, taking an advantage of their inability to defend themselves due to physical weakness.

  • Should we say that it is an offence for a person to be well advanced in age…? If the answer is yes, then why do we feel afraid of premature death…? Why is it that many people want to grow old…?

It is high time everybody knew that superstition has the ardent potential to destroy the public peace. Let us protect our grandparents from any form of social injustices which come with mythical and unsubstantiated accusations of witchcraft. All the concerned parties should, therefore, maximize campaign against any kind of brutality perpetrated against the elderly people. The best approach is by enacting and/or implementing stiff laws in a bid to suppress such cruel, inhumane, and barbaric acts which violate the fundamental human rights of the elderly. Let us all unite to sustain law and order in our respective communities.

Elderly people are not witches nor wizards… Rather, they are the VIPs of all the human races in the world.