Monday, 11 May 2015

Kwesi Brenyah, Dua Eni Amanehunu!

If the size of the throngs of people who assemble to pay homage to the memory of an individual who has just  passed away, is a measure of the standing in society of that individual whiles alive, then judging by the masses that attended the tradirional Ghanaian ceremony to commemorate the first week after the death of the Despite Media Group's general manager, then the late Mr. Kwesi Brenyah was indeed a giant amongst men, in Ghana.

That traditional ceremony held a week after a death to deliberate on and choose  a burial date for the  deceased that is part of Ghanaian culture, which was held at East Legon's  Lizzie sports complex last Sunday, was indeed one fit for a king. The family settled on 26-28 June, 2016, for the funeral and burial of Mr. Kwesi Brenyah.

The traditional Ghanaian ceremony to mark the first week after the demise of Mr. Brenyah, was held at the Lizzie sports complex, and showed the power and influence, of the Despite Media Group.

Virtually everybody who is someone in Ghana came to pay their respects to Mr. Brenyah, and commiserate with owners and employees of the company he helped build into such a potent force in the Ghanaian media world.

In a sense, the happy family atmosphere that prevails amongst the staff of the Despite Media Group - which is so palpable on the airwaves of the company's  television and radio stations - is a reflection of the character of Mr. Kwesi Brenyah.

That positive company culture within the Despite Media Group evolved because Mr. Brenyah was a soft-spoken gentleman who had a welcoming and all-embracing nature. His gentle nature was the ethos that underpinned his management style.

That family atmosphere amongst the staff of the company,  is a reflection of  the loyalty inspired amongst the company's staff by the owners of the Despite Group of Companies  - Mr. Osei Kwame Despite and and his brother Mr. Ernest Ofori Sarpong.

That Osei Kwame Despite has captured the imagination of Ghanaians is beyond dispute.

Indeed many who came to the Lizzie sports complex last Sunday, came in solidarity with Osei Kwame Despite  and his younger brother Ernest Ofori Sarpong  - to commiserate with them on the loss of a trusted right-hand man: who was with them from the very early days of their business lives.

The story of Osei Kwame Despite's rise from humble beginings - trading from a table-top, to immense wealth owning and running a flourishing conglomerate, which  aside from the multimedia company also includes companies ranging from those producing iodated salt to powdered fufu and powdered milk chocolate -  is one that resonates with millions of hardworking Ghanaians: who see him as a role model whose example they can also emulate.

The well-organised and well-attended traditional ceremony held following the death of Mr. Kwesi Brenyah was a portrayal of  the capabilities of a part of Ghana that is world-class and actually works - despite the many challenges it faces.

Many hardworking and prosperous individuals from the private-sector who have built solid  and successful businesses of their own came in their expensive vehicles to the privately-owned (by the former French footballl star Marcels Dessailley) Lizzie sports complex to commiserate with Mr Brenyah's  family and pay their respects to the memory of a hardworking man who was full of humility.

Kwesi Brenyah played an important part in building a Ghanaian company that has a well-deserved reputation for being a business underpinned by corporate good governance principles that is owned by hardworking and honest individuals  who see giving back to society - by supporting the needy and disadvanted in Ghana - as a moral obligation.

He will forever be remembered in the annals of the history of the Despite Media Group - some of the shares of which one hopes Osei Kwame Despite will float on the alternative market of the Ghana Stock Exchange as a response to the emerging challenges on the media landscape in Ghana: with some of the shares going to staff and management of the company (with dividends always being shared amongst staff on its payroll).

That will be a fitting memorial to Kwesi Brenyah's long and honest stewardship. Hopefully, his wife and children will be allocated his complement of the company's shares - should that idea ever be taken up by Osei Kwame  Despite.

Our hearts and prayers go out to Kwesi Brenyah's wife, children and members of his extended family clan. He was a good and decent man who impacted the lives of many positively. May his soul rest in peace. Kwesi Brenyah, demerifa dua - dua eni amanehunu!

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