Dr Edward Gyader is one unsung hero of the Upper West Region though his name is a household one. He is a man of many parts; a surgeon, a politician, a sportsman, a hunter and devout Catholic.
Some 40 years ago and as a little boy, I was privileged to know the tall and lanky Dr Gyader who was not only natural in his looks but also outspoken and very inspiring. I heard great and unbelievable stories of the man like most people have heard. One of them is how he could do surgery without electricity but using light from a torch.
As a little boy, I was sick a number of times. And any time my Mum sent me to the Hospital I got well upon seeing him. Hearing his voice alone was enough to heal me of my illness. He has this deep but smooth and very unique voice, when heard, you will feel his presence as a physician. He was great surgeon I’m told. I wanted to read science because of him in Xavier but I wasn’t that smart for it.
Again I remember him for his love for politics.
Maybe the circumstances of the time fueled his interest in politics so as to serve his people better. Oral history has it that he was a torn in the flesh of the then PNDC government led by my mentor the late Jerry John Rawlings (may his soul RIPP). Several attempts to represent his people in Parliament did not win him the seat as vile propaganda was used against him. Voters were asked to reconsider their decision to send the only doctor who was exceptionally good in handling their hernia. And the propaganda did the trick to deny him the chance to go to Parliament. Good or not it happened. Yet this did not deter him. He held up to his values and finally served in the Council of State for his people and the Upper West Region.
Though a kid, I was quite close to the stories of this unsung hero. He played Tennis with my Dad and I was always one of the ball boys at the displeasure of my Mum. My Mum always wanted me home to help her out but here was I being introduced to a game I was satisfied to run after balls for the players. Today I play Tennis for pleasure as a result. I remember one time a ball from Dr Gyader hit my eye and for some minutes I literally went blind. And in his usual fashion he came closer and asked me to sit down for a while. In no time I was on my feet doing my job. But that was a painful experience.
This man had the passion for hunting. He and my Dad joined other grownups and dogs for hunting. This my Dad never allowed me though I was curious. I was too young for hunting. But I enjoyed the meat they brought home. It was an exhausting exercise and one could see that in them anytime they returned. Yet my desire to follow them to the bush kept growing to no avail.
I’m still wondering why our leaders are not planning anything in terms of rewarding this great man of our soil. He has impacted lives and touched many. He certainly sacrificed greatly by remaining in one of the most deprived and poor communities and for that matter region just to serve his people. I think he has served us enough and it is time we say thank you to him too. Honouring him will amount to motivating our young ones to learn to serve like Dr Gyader has done. Let us celebrate the man whilst he is still with us not at his funeral.
Dr Gyader has such a chequered history requiring a study by all of our youth. I will be proud to read his memoirs sooner than later. Those of you who know him better than us should help in this direction. A people who cannot celebrate their own is killing the fire in the young ones. Renaming one of our Schools or one of our Hospitals after him will not be enough but worthy. Starting a Foundation with a seed fund from contributions could also lead to supporting needy students in areas of his career. Dr Gyader has indeed paid his dues and deserves some celebration. Now is the time.
Source: John Vianney Kuubaea