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The KNUST Diaries -Unity Hall Deity Aboagyewa

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The KNUST Diaries -Unity Hall Deity Aboagyewa

Bang! Bang! Bang!
There were loud bangs on my door and as I stood up, rather startled, and before I could take a step, the door had flung open and a burly young man had walked in, followed by some boys carrying his luggage. He seemed to be in a hurry.

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“Modibo” he said, extending a hand “your roommate”

We exchanged pleasantries. He dumped his luggage unto his bed, then seeing the brand new t-shirt I had left on my bed, he had exclaimed, rather dramatically;

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“London, London, London!”

He had pumped his two fists vigorously as he said that. Then, just as quickly as he had come in, he had left. He lived in Kumasi and there was no point coming in on a Saturday. He had brought his luggage and registered, but he was going to go back home and would be back Sunday evening to prepare for lectures.

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It was dark now and the courtyard was well-lit with little electrical bulbs in the grass. They were beautiful. The ritual of people arriving continued throughout the evening. I had had enough by now. I had been sitting on the balcony all day. I went to lie on my bed to rest. Then just as I was beginning to nod off, I heard the sound of drumming from the “Always Around” and then shortly, the singing had started. It was the famous Aboagyewaa Choir. You see, there was a little naked female statue in the courtyard.

It was said, by the students, to be the goddess of Unity Hall. The students had named her Aboagyewaa and subsequently formed the choir to sing her praises. And they sang beautifully, except that the words of all the songs they sang had been replaced with the most vulgar lyrics one could imagine. It was all light-hearted stuff but the people in the choir took their job rather seriously.

“And in that hole” the leader was singing
“And in that hole” an enthusiastic response from the choir
“There was a prick” the choir leader
“There was a prick” the choir
“It was a very huge prick” the leader
“It was a very huge prick” the choir
“That you ever did see” the leader
“That you ever did see” the choir
And then everybody,
“The prick in the hole
“The hole in the ass,
“And the black hair’s all around
“The black hair’s all around.

The singing continued. Every now and again a lone voice in the choir would shout “praise the Lord”
And the choir would respond
“alleluia”

There was no way I was going to lie in bed with such beautiful singing in the distance. I quickly descended to the ground floor and to the “Always Around” to take part in the singing. It was fun listening, but it was even more fun singing along. I began to notice the main characters in the group and in particular, an elderly bearded gentleman in a blue suit who sat quietly but would every now and again interject with shouts of “praise the lord”. His name, I was later to find out, was Mr Samson. He was a mature student, having come to the university after several years of teaching in secondary schools. His dry sense of humour, had won him many friends. He took the Aboagyewaa choir so seriously; he always wore a blue suit, just to sing.

The story was told of when the Aboagyewa choir was travelling to Cape Coast in a bus and had stopped at a service station for a break. When they had all settled to continue their journey, three women approached the driver. Their car had broken down and they wanted a lift to Cape Coast. The students had encouraged the driver to allow them in. The women had hopped in and sat by the elderly man in a blue suit, perhaps for some crumbs of comfort in what appeared to be a bus full of rowdy young people. As soon as the bus had moved, the singing had begun in earnest. The women had been horrified by what they were hearing. One of them had turned to the silent elderly bearded man in a blue suit on her right, to express her anxiety:

“Sir, are we ok? Who are these people and where are they going?”
“Oh never mind Madam” Mr Samson reassured her “we are all students from the KNUST. We are just going to Cape Coast to find some women to fuck.”

Early next morning, I had been woken from my slumber by loud banging on the rails on the staircase and shouting on the corridor.

“Ooooh, ooooh oooooh!!

As soon as I opened my door to find out what was happening, I was grabbed. To my left and to my right I could see other guys with long faces being held. I presumed they were all first years as well. We were all marched to the pond in the courtyard, Kwame Nkrumah’s pond, the one with the red fish. It was “ponding” time. We stood in a queue as one after the other, we were dropped in the pond and our heads quite dangerously submerged till we were almost out of breath before being released. The guy in front of me was shaking uncontrollably. He called out to one of the seniors;

“Charley, I don’t think I can cope with this. I have an allergy”

“Hey!” The senior had shouted “Guys, listen to this guy, oretutu brofo. What was it? Alleeee…. what? Take him away and give him the treatment for that!”

He received the worse ponding of all. But the initiation was over, and we knew, that as long as we did not step on any toes, we would be free from ponding for the rest of the year. But then, Modibo had arrived that evening and quite casually expressed dissatisfaction at having missed his roommate’s initiation.

“Ooooh! Oooooh!” he had started

There were seniors popping up from every corner in response to the chant. The worse one could do in a circumstance like that was to give any resistance. You were far better off taking it in your stride and praying that it would be over soon.

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