I was the 47th applicant to be called to enter the conference room for the interview in 2004, when I applied for a job as a security man at the Tamale Teaching Hospital. Sat in gently was the young and humble though tough new administrator of the hospital, looking at me with questions written all over his face.
Admin; Young man how old are you (then I mentioned, and he continued), why are you here as young as you are looking for a job as security man when you should’ve been in school.
S. F; Sir I am on a journey and if I am able to cross this barrier my hopes to get to the dreamland will be brightened. (That was the answer which qualified me for the second interview).
When the second interview was called I was excited to have been part of the 10 guys to have qualified, the second interview was used to take our informations and we were taken through orientation for work to begin the following week. The administrator called me again, and said to me “we want to use 4 of you as porters and you will be part of them”.
The name of the job was sounding so good to my ears that I took it without a second thought, I was mocked at by some friends and family members who were calling me a mortuary man looking at the nature of the job. But I never gave up to their mockery, “people never throw stones at a fruitless tree” I encouraged myself. (The rest is history).
From there, I joined the Health Extension module under NYEP in 2007. It was also a very tough journey, moving to 9 different communities within the then Tolon/ Kumbungu district for clinicals or practicals. I left the TTH for the Tolon job because I was made to believe that NYEP was going to pay better than my job at the Teaching Hospital, but it was also not rosy as I expected before joining.
We were not receiving our salaries as expected, no better accommodation as we were sleeping on tables in the abandoned assembly offices in all areas visited. Lack of portable drinking water in the communities we visited was another headache, coupled with poor phone networks that disconnected us completely from our families.
I worked for 6 months with the NYEP and left to read management studies option (DBS) at the Tamale Polytechnic. Though I worked for 6 months but got salaries for only 4 months just like any of my colleagues. At the Tamale Polytechnic I contested and won a very keenly contested election to become the youngest local and by default the national DIBSSAG President, that was 2008/2009 academic year.
I came back to the hospital after my completion of the course in 2009 and was unable to secure myself a job according lack of space as I was made to believe, then I decided to go back and continue with HND accountancy at the same Tamale Polytechnic. And since my childhood I have had the passion to save lives, and so working in a health setup has been my target.
With this at the back of my mind, in my second year, I applied for admission to read nursing/medicine at the UDS medical school, but Allah gave me a different course (Biomedical laboratory sciences).
Here Mr. Mawia Shani I will celebrate you always for your efforts in supporting to get admission and going beyond my expectations in life. Then was also when I appreciated the fact that your results alone can’t guarantee you a job or admission to school. Battling with grade 11 to gain admission to the university was the most frustrating moment in my life.
Two years ago (when I was doing my project work for my first degree certification) I was in the chemistry department when the newly appointed administrator then was taken round the units, entered was the man I met 16 years ago who employed me as a porter in the hospital.
He was looking at me in amazement “this your face looks familiar to me” he said. “Sir you employed me here as a porter 16 years ago” I said it with tears standing in my eyes. “You are a great guy and a dreamer, meet me in my office” was all he said to me and left.
- Give people the opportunity even if you don’t like them, that chance might be the beginning of greater things to come into their lives.
- Don’t be a serial complainer because of your situation today, people have gone through worse situations than yours. Workhard and do not hang your hopes on human beings because we disappoint or die, rather hang it on God because he never disappoints and always live.
Remember the God who brought us this far will soon take us to the end successfully, the struggle continues unabated.
Winner don’t quit….. Still on the journey…
MLS Seidu Fiter (Student, UDS medical school. Department of Doctor of medical laboratory)
NB: Soon to drop another episode….watch out….