10 Years ago, I was issued an Admission to Pursue a BA in Integrated Development Studies Program at the Wa Campus University of Development Studies (UDS), I had mixed feeling because I had no idea of how the North looked like by then, I had to flashback to the opinions of others and definition of the North by some elders and my mom back at Ashanti Region where I resided, down south of Ghana, I was told the North is a typical village with abysmal roads and with it’s Residents living in mud houses. I was also told they live close to steams and depend on dugouts for water, this influenced my decision to house the oblivious thought that the North is a hub of extreme poverty, to add to that, my perception lingered around the fact that lots of people from the north struggled extremely hard in fettles like ‘Kayayo’ to survive. I asked myself, where from these people, don’t they have rich people in their society, do they have options, will they leave a nice place to struggle here?, All these questions got me no answers, by then I had the conviction that the North is a single point with not branches or sub areas.
In August 2012, I was set to honor an admission issued to me by the University for Development Studies (UDS) to pursue BA in Integrated Development Studies.
Before I could set out, I went on google to have a fair idea of what the North looked like, what i saw were old pictures from 2003 giving details of how several communities lack several necessities Including potable water, good roads and good schools, I saw less of development content Including tall buildings, nice houses and investments, this triggered my mind to believe the North was actually backward.
This was according to my dad an avenue for me to experience the realities of life and understand how the world looks in different angles.
I went for shopping before we could finally leave for the North, I calculated the number of days to spend in school and what to get in order to sustain myself, we bought several packs of water, I prepared several containers of shito, bags of rice, cooking oil, I bought a mattress from Kumasi Mall, with 7 mosquito sprays, got some first aid drugs into my bag, bought lots of exercise books and pens et al.
On the 25th of August I woke up and prayed, my dad as also woke up, we made enquires to know where Wa is located and a friend Indicated it was after we get to Techiman we can locate a road to Wa, we set off to Techiman, when we got to Techiman my dad stopped to buy some fuel and in the process we requested for directions from the fuel attendant, he pointed at a road and we took off, he said from Techiman we would get to Wenchi before setting out for anotherTown called Bamboi, we got to Wenchi and sign boards were clear, we knew we were at Wenchi, that was our first time there, after leaving Wenchi, we proceeded, we arrived at Bamboi and had to stop a resident to make enquires, we were directed to proceed straight ahead, the Resident mentioned that we would get to two major communities namely Tinga and Bole, we proceeded till we got to Bole, we sought for direction again after travelling for over 340km from Kumasi to Bole in 5hours. We were again directed to go straight towards the North and that we would get to Sawla before we Branch left.
We headed to Sawla but one thing I noticed was that people were comfortable and we could see a lot of shops and Businesses running. I didn’t want to conclude based on that because we were not in Wa yet.
In Sawla we were directed to head toward another Community by name Tuna, and after Tuna, Wa is 75km away. We got to Tuna and proceeded in an Hour time I saw over 5 Communities with no mud houses, I also saw lots of houses with Electricity, I was in delima by then, my dad was marvelled as well, at a point we got to a Community and we got confused so we stopped, we enquired to know where we were so we spoke Twi, surpprising on our part the resident could speak Twi, so we engaged more, he told us UDS was just some few kilometers ahead of us.
He joined us in our car and travelled with us to Wa Campus of UDS, he directed us to the Administration at Sombo and in the process we were received, my dad thanked him and Gave him Ghc150 for transportation back to his Community, he took his contact in order to reach out to him when the need arises, he pleaded with him to take care of me and in the process I exchanged contacts with the resident of Ponyentanga, he was a past Student.
I registered as a student and afterwards we were told the University has no Accommodation, he took us to town to relax whilst he arranges for accommodation from a friend after we had informed him of our situation.
In getting to town we saw everything we had purchased at Kumasi in Shops, we were exasperated by then my dad revealed to the good Samaritan that all the items in the Car were brought from Kumasi because of Me.
He was shocked after we had revealed it to him.
He contacted a past Student executive and low and behold I had an accommodation, my dad slept for the day after everything was set, he paid for my accommodation and gave me money for upkeeps. He left back to Kumasi and since then my stay in Wa was a discovery till date, I really learnt alot.