I remember vividly that I once asked you a seemingly absurd question. It even seemed nonsensical to you and many others. But in the end, you and most of my compatriots agreed with me that it was neither absurd nor nonsensical. Indeed, most of you agreed that it was rather a thought–provoking question. The question I refer to is: Are you the real father of your children?
I asked the question somewhere in April 2009, but very recent events have made it imperative for me to revisit the question. I’m sure you’ve heard the ‘they-are-not-my-children’ lamentation by the former Black Stars player. Obviously, that famous star and others in his shoes would not refer to the question as absurd and nonsensical.
The famous footballer is not alone in the web. Many Asomdwekromanians are also caught in the quagmire. Indeed, my favourite uncle, Wofa Kwesi is one of the unfortunate persons entangled in that web.
I’ve heard a few infidelity stories before, but seeing my own kith and kin indulge in it left me tongue-tied. How my uncle’s wife, Adwoa, who was revered in Kubease and the neighbouring villages, could stoop so low to engage in adultery is still a wonder to me and most Kubeaseans. Five years on, some still find it difficult to accept the fact that it really did happen.
It all started when I chanced upon Aunty Adwoa sitting in the lobby of a hotel in Mangoase. Her demeanour gave me the impression she was on to something mischievous.
Did I hear you ask my mission in the hotel? Of course, I was there to see the manager, Kwabena, who happened to be an old pal. I took the opportunity to ask Kwabena whether he knew Aunty Adwoa, and his response sent shivers down my spine. “She is the mistress of one of the richest men in Mangoase; and have been meeting here every fortnight,” he said. He also confirmed it had been going on for a while. I was very shocked, but vowed not to tell her husband, Wofa Kwesi. But when I visited Kubease and saw Wofa Kwesi, I realized I could not stomach it any longer; so I let the obese cat out of the bag. Hmm, this my okro-mouth! Although Wofa Kwesi was shocked to the bone, he didn’t doubt me because he knew that mine was an okro-mouth that did not perpetrate falsehood. When questioned, Aunty Adwoa did not deny, but rather sobbed and begged for forgiveness. Following this development, it was impressed upon Wofa Kwesi to go for a test to confirm the paternity of his adulterous wife’s children. Can you guess the results of the test? Yes, you are right. The test proved he wasn’t the father of any of the three children. What a big ‘wahala’. But the question is: Na who cause am? Abusuapanin, there is no denying the fact that there are many childless couples going through unimaginable ‘wahala’ at the hands of their parents and in-laws. The women are most often blamed for the problem, while their male counterparts, who could also be responsible for the problem, are left to go scot-free. In Asomdwekrom, fertility is most times blamed wholly and solely on women. This may be due to ignorance. It could also be to protect the male ego; for we live in a country where failure to father a child is a kind of shame no man wants to face. I know a couple who were married for almost 10 years without a child. After enduring the boos, insults, character assassinations and all manner of name-calling, the woman decided enough was enough and called it quits. She remarried and the husband did likewise. While the woman took seed few moons after remarrying, the man still struggled to score a goal.
It came to pass that the woman had two children while the ex-husband kept on shooting over the bar. The man’s family became alarmed and advised him to see a doctor. Lo and behold, it was detected he was oligospermian and therefore could not father children.
‘Oligo’ is a Greek word meaning ‘few’, while ‘spermia’ originated from the Greek word ‘sperma’ meaning ‘seed’. ‘Oligospermia’ therefore means ‘few seed’. A person suffering from oligospermia is therefore a person with few active sperm. There are others too who are azoospermic (men with no sperm at all). If I’m not exaggerating, I can say a great chunk of the adult male population is suffering from this oligospermia syndrome. You can therefore imagine the number of women going through childlessness palaver through no fault of theirs. But does that give them the right to indulge in adultery?
My doctor tells me most oligospermia cases are not hopeless. In other words, most of these cases are treatable if reported early. He explained that a man needs, at least, 20 million spermatozoa (active cells) in a measured amount of sperm to be able to score goals like Cristiano Ronaldo. Anything less means the man would continue to squander begging opportunities if medical help is not sought. I therefore took the opportunity to check on my ‘spermia’ status before tying the knot, and the results would amaze you. The test proved that Yours truly had almost 100 million spermatozoa in the sampled semen. Simply put, I could score more goals than Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Carlos Tevez put together. Indeed, my two boys are my carbon copy so I do not need a DNA test to confirm the paternity or otherwise of my children. I hope my fellow males would take a cue from me and also check on their ‘spermia’ status to avoid the embarrassment of later waking up to the realization that they are ‘oligospermian’. To the childless wives too I say; be faithful to your spouses and encourage them to check on their ‘spermia’ status. After all, marriage is for better and for worse, isn’t it? See you next week for another konkonsa, Deo volente!
By Nana Kwaku Ogboro