Monday, 22 December 2008

Please do not urinate here!

One of the most embarassing things about many Ghanaians or Accraians is that they seem to have embraced public urination. Bloggers before me have written about this phenomenon, fascinated at the skilled techniques used to perfect this action. I think we've all been visually abused by seeing people empty their bladders any and everywhere. Please note however that this act tends to be restricted to certain groups of society, it seems for every one person who does it, there are two who disapprove.

As a newcomer in Ghana the signs one reacts to are the 'please do not urinate here' signs, in addition to other common ones like 'no taxis allowed'. But today I heard the best story of what goes around comes around and if we spread this story perhaps the public urination will finally end.

A (Ghanaian) man living in the States started feeling a bit...desperate. He stopped at the roadside and decide to whip it out and have a pee. However, a police car saw him and pulled over to detain him. After a bit of questioning they asked for his papers and lo and behold: he was in the States illegally! So now he is on his way back to Ghana after being deported. Please oh please can we find this man and have him lecture on the fact that charity begins at home.

If you don't stop peeing all over the walls of Accra, you'll end up pissing your way out of the land of opportunity!


patrick said...

Maya,i think this a so called 3rd world behavior..i have seen this specially in most part of south east Asia ie..India ete..peace .

Maya said...

Yes Patrick, I guess it could be called '3rd world behavior'...but also 1st world drunken behaviour as unfortunately the same thing is seen on every street of London as soon as the pubs close or a football game ends!

Anonymous said...

I think the urinating is worse in Ethiopia, where I once lived. Men would urinate right in front of you and even have the audacity to acknowledge your presence as you pass...eeekk. But I must say in the time that I was based there, I saw one incident of women urinating and I found it sort of liberating, especially in a very heavy patriarchal society...

novisi said...

actually this 'act' is not 'restricted' to certain groups! it casts across even though of course it may be more prevalent with the poor for example! but don't be surprised that you find a CEO of high repute in a corner peeeing away!

That is where government comes in...where are the public places of convenience???

so how much control can we have if public toilets are hard to come by...i have peeed in least in some corners and i know next time i get the feel i would definitely look for some nearby gutter or bladder first! ???

poor Ghanaman!

however anonymous... your comment is sweetly liberating...hahahaha!!

Maya said...

Hi Anon,

How odd to be greeted by an 'offender'! But it kind of establishes the fact that he didn't think he was doing anything wrong (like the many people who turn and face traffic while doing it rather than try to hide their faces).

Completely agree about women though, somehow because of the rarity it is rather fascinating to see them do it, more so, than offending.

Maya said...

Hi Novisi,

I completely agree that it stretches across all social classes, that's why I used the word 'group' because I'm not sure how exactly to classify those who commit the act as from what I have seen it has nothing to do with money or education. I know that many of my fellow classmates from law school would be caught doing this (and my classmates include chiefs, former MPs, doctors, etc).

Is it just a random thing, occurring due to the lack of public toilets? Then again, we don't have that many public toilets in Sweden (Gothenburg) but people still manage to wait til at home or at the office.

Hm, I think further research is required...

Anonymous said...

I think the act is totally gross. Its mainly men who do it. Its inconsiderate to everyone else, spreads diseases like Hep B. It should stop in every country but its too late. Why do it for all to see?? Or maybe they want to be seen. Ive had to do many times but never in view of everyone, in a lift, shop doorway etc.

Brendan Fevola Peeing said...

You say that "it seems for every one person who does it, there are two who disapprove."

I did it once and tens of thousands disapproved!

Fast Weight Loss said...

It's not just Ghanaian men who do it in public in the USA!

It's a free country


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