Saturday, 24 March 2012

Kwaku Ofosu Asare talks to The Voice newspaper (March 15-21, 2012)

Paulina Opoku-Gyimahs: At the time of writing about the death of Kwame Ofosu-Asare, 17, I had no idea he was the son of much loved, prominent Ghanaian TV sports presenter, Kwaku Ofosu Asare, -so you can imagine a week later then this truth transpired??? Honestly, I still can’t shake-off this terrible crime and like you, I’m still lifting up the Ofosu Asare family in prayer. The following comes from the Voice newspaper, and makes for sober/insightful reading…… God Bless the Ofosu Asare family, I do not believe for a second that Kwame Ofosu-Asare died in vain. God will surly glorify himself and bring peace and resolution and change through this great loss

Title: Murdered teen’s father says tragedy should unite and drive community / Written by Lizabeth Davis  17/03/2012 08:20 AM
IT IS hard for Kwaku Ofosu-Asare to deal with the pain of losing his son.

He had spoken with 17-year-old Kwame just three hours before the innocent teenager was chased and stabbed to death while out with a friend in Brixton, south London, on March 2.

The teenager later died in an ambulance on the way to hospital from what a post mortem report said were multiple stab wounds.

Now, Ofosu-Asare and other family members are struggling with the reality that they will never see Kwame alive again because he was “in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

Ofosu-Asare, whose sports broadcasting career began in his native Ghana, spoke of how his young son dreamed of being an entrepreneur; how the A’ level student loved business, music, drama and football.
Kwame even got the opportunity to meet his idol, England footballer Rio Ferdinand, his father recalled. Ofosu-Asare remembered how he would tease Kwame, telling him “there is life after football”.

“He was an affable, likeable person who was full of ambition,” Ofosu-Asare said.

Kwame lived in Catford, south London and had been studying business studies and economics at Forest Hill Boys School’s sixth form in south London. His school told The Voice Kwame would be “greatly missed.”

His father said multi-talented Kwame, a regular churchgoer, was the youngest member of the family church’s congregation. Kwame would sometimes bring his friends along to join him in worship.

He was a son who always wanted to put his best foot forward, wanting to impress his family, his father stated.

Ofosu-Asare spoke about an occasion when Kwame performed in a play at the Broadway Theatre in Catford.

“He denied me the opportunity to see him. He said, ‘Dad, this is just a cameo role. I am going to be assigned a bigger role. That's when I want you to be there’.”

He did not imagine Kwame’s ‘bigger role’ would never happen.

“I never thought I would be sitting in front of you to talk about the death of my son,” Ofosu-Asare said.“This could happen to anybody,” he warned. “It may even happen to us, the grown-ups. None of us are safe so we must collectively fight this cancer.”
Ofosu-Asare and his family moved from Ghana to London 10 years ago.

“He was the person who wanted to go an extra mile to help everybody, and I'm not just saying that because he's not here or because he's my son.”

Ofosu-Asare, however, said he wanted to clear up inaccuracies he has seen in some media reports.

“One, Kwame, was not a member of any gang, and two he did not have any friends or relatives living in Brixton.”

In fact, Kwame “strongly detested” gang crime, he said.
Ofosu-Asare said the loss of his son is such a blow that only their faith in God is keeping the family going.

That’s where we are drawing our strength from, but it hasn’t been easy,” he said. “These are trying times for us. We have tapped into our faith and that is driving us on.”
Speaking at the New Scotland Yard headquarters last week, Ofosu-Asare appealed for cooperation from the community to help put an end to youth violence.

“Tell the authorities what you saw. Your help is urgently needed,” Ofosu-Asare said.

“Kwame was a sacrificial lamb for us all to campaign against gang crime. The walls are cracked and we need to mend them. To do this we need to come together.”
Kwame’s death is “a very good indication of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but for how long can we continue to say that? We have to put in preventive measures rather than curative… before it gets out of hand.”

Ofosu-Asare advised those in gangs to “try to stay away, seek counselling, find a way of getting out and shape your life. We all have good attributes in us,” he added.
Seven other stabbings were reported to the police in south London between February 25 and March 4.

On March 7, a 22-year-old man was arrested in connection with Kwame’s murder.

Anyone with information in relation to Kwame’s death should contact the police on 020 8721 4205 or to call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


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