Opana - The Coffin Maker

Opana – Episode 16

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Opana – Episode 16

© Akoto Alexander

Michael : Papa is what am hearing from people true that your shop got burnt to ashes and even a nail was not taken from the place?

Opana: Who told you that?

Michael : Mmmm I overheard that gossip of a woman telling the other tenants when I was drying my things at the back of the house.

Opana: Which woman are you talking about and how did that person get to know since nobody in this house was at the shop when I got there.

Michael : Then this Eno Bruwaa can talk paa ooo, papa you need to see how this woman was talking like she was standing there as the shop was on fire. It was later that the Hausa woman came to mummy to ask if what she heard was true and that was what got mummy running.

Opana: So where is you mother now?

Michael : She is in your bedroom, I have sent Bernice to go and buy medicine for her so that it will stabilise her condition. But papa how true is the news the woman is speculating around?

Opana: Hmmmm women and gossip, well the shop didn’t burn totally. It’s part of it which got burnt but well done my son for sending your sister to get medicine for your mother. Let me go inside and see how she is doing now but follow me so I give you something.

Mike follows his father into his bedroom and there he gave him the necklace with the cross locket which was given to him the previous day by the beggar and instructed him to always put it on his neck.

Opana: My son always put this necklace on your neck, when you are bathing even put it on. It will serve as a protective gear for you from all attacks, been it robbery, car accidents, assassination or anything evil, it was a gift someone gave to me for a good deed I did for that person and today am handing it over to you. Learn to listen to your instincts anytime you have this necklace on, take very good care of it and keep it safe and I promise good luck will always be your portion.

Michael : Wow what a beautiful necklace papa, I am very grateful for this master piece and I promise to keep it safe and always have it around my neck. Papa my friend from the city called me this morning also to ask when I was coming to the city.

Opana: Mmmm so what did you tell him?

Michael : I told him I had spoken to you and you have given me your full support and equally promised to assist me to acquire the needed gadgets for the upcoming project. He was really happy when I told him that.

Opana: He should be my son because I know you are a genius and anything you do, your impact towards the project is always above performance, I know you will excel in no time. I will like you to give me a little time so I can solve some pressing issues then I will sort you out nicely. Hope you are okay with that.

Michael : Am very okay with your decision papa, I know you have to solve the shop issue first so anytime you are ready to sort me out, I will be patiently waiting for you but for now am going to continue with my laundry and sorry about your shop.

Opana: Okay my boy.

Later Opana goes to his fridge and pours himself some juice to cool his temper down and comes to stand by his window to watch his compound and shortly after he did that he gets angry with what he sees and hears.

Collins Twumasi: Charlie Dennis this morning am really sad for our landlord paa ooo, in this hard time if you lose something which brings money to your pocket it is going to be something else ooo.

Dennis Asomani: Azay am even more sad than you my guy. I passed by the shop last night when I was coming home and everything was okay there only to hear later this morning that the place gutted fire. I don’t know the extent of the damage but I feel for that man paaa, on this note if you are owing him with rent then I guess you should start making his money ready because he won’t listen to any excuses for now.

Eno Bruwaa: (from nowhere joins the conversation without been invited) What was he expecting as he went to take money from the offering bowl yesterday at church? Was he thinking God was blind or daft? Me am not judging him but what I know is the stubborn fly must end up in the grave with the corpse.

Collins Twumasi: Enough madam, who invited you into our conversation? Don’t come and spoil our reggae with your funk, see our buttocks are covered with cotton so we have vowed not to jump any fire. Please go away with you troubles, you are always full of negative surprises. How did you know he went to take money from the offering bowl since you don’t attend the same church with him, even I haven’t seen you preparing for church before so where did you get this information from?

Dennis Asomani: Eno Bruwaa I know before any problem passes by, it stops by your end to greet you so I beg you in the name of God to please go far from us. We didn’t see you nor talk to you, infact both of us were not here at all. For you things that will take someone a year to say, it takes less than a minute for you to say it.

Eno Bruwaa: (in a low tone) Did I say anything wrong to you guys?

Before anyone could utter a word they saw Opana standing infront of his door with a glass of juice in his hands. He quitely turned and entered his house without saying a word to anyone.

Collins Twumasi: You see what you have caused now? Dennis am out of here.

Dennis Asomani: I believe you are happy now with your achievement. If you don’t stop gossiping, you will get into trouble whiles the court is on strike. Change your life for you are an elderly person.

Eno Bruwaa: Eeeeiiii did this man here the things that came out from my mouth? This my okro mouth will lead me into serious trouble oooo. Even if I say I won’t talk then my mouth is doing me logoligilogoligi, my head is not a bank that keeps things you know but I hope this man didn’t hear me or else am doomed.

As Opana went inside he dropped the glass of juice and made a call to an unknown person.

Opana: Where are you?

Unknown Person: Please I and the boys are still at the place trying to put the remaining pieces together.

Opana: Stop whatever you are doing and come to the house together with the boys right now, come along with your tools also.

Unknown Person: Okay sir, we will be there in a the shortest possible time.

In less than 30minutes Opana’s boys were at his door and he led them to Eno Bruwaa’s end. He ordered them to climb to the roof and started pulling off the roofing sheet of the room.

Eno Bruwaa: My landlord please is there any problem.

Opana: Yes madam, there is a big problem. You know there is a problem with the roofing sheets on your room so am pulling it down so that when I get money I will replace it with new ones.

Eno Bruwaa: But you could have given me a prior notice so I can put my things in place and moreover I am the one in the room and am not complaining.

Opana: Well you are not complaining because it is not your house and you know you owe me a lot of monies. Instead of you to find ways and means to get me my money, you go about gossiping as if the government pays you to do that. Hey boys what are you waiting for? Climb to the roof and start pulling off the roofing sheets and I don’t have to tell you to becareful up there, the sheets are very old and weak.

After sometime Eno Bruwaa’s daughter came to meet the destruction exercise that was going on at their end and she got angry.

Eno Bruwaa’s Daughter: Mama what is going on here? You didn’t tell me there was going to be a renovation exercise here this afternoon.

Eno Bruwaa: My dear I don’t think it is a renovation exercise ooo, I think we are been ejected indirectly by our landlord.

Eno Bruwaa’s Daughter: But that is not how to eject someone from your room? First you give the person 3months to get a room somewhere and after the 3months if the person hasn’t got anywhere yet, you top up again with another 3months making it 6months in total. This is not done anywhere in this country.

Opana: Nonsense!!! You want to read your rights to me huh? When that foolish husband of yours threw you out of his house did he give you any prior notice before driving you away from his house? Why didn’t you ask him to give you time to pack out of his house? Don’t make me any more angrier than I am now because you won’t like the other side of me.

Eno Bruwaa’s Daughter: I left that man’s place because I was very fed up with the way things were going on in that house. But for this I won’t allow you to have your way just like that, I will go every learnt to put you in your right position. We are not animals to be treated this way, mama I will be back very soon. Wait for me here.

Eno Bruwaa: Where are you going my daughter please take it easy and becareful what you do out there.

Opana: As if I care about the nonsense your daughter is sprewing from her mouth. Hey can’t you pull that roof over there down?

6th Apprentice: Master the nail is hard for me to pull off, you know you haven’t taught us how to do this kind of thing. We are only specialise in coffin making.

Opana: Nonsense!!! Can’t you use your common sense? Get down for me to come there, I will do it myself.

Opana climbed to the top and started pulling the roof down without mercy. He ordered one of the boys to go and find some of the scrap boys to buy the roofing sheets that were been pulled down. Because it was sunny and hot Opana was sweating badly so he took his handkerchief from his pocket to wipe his face and something fell down without his notice……..


Opana and his boys pulled the roofing sheets of Eno Bruwaa down without leaving behind a single sheet on the woman’s roof. One of his apprentices brought a scrap dealer and right infront of Eno Bruwaa, Opana sold the roofing sheetings at an amount of fifty Ghana cedis and gave the money out to his boys for them to go and use it for food for the work they did. Opana went back to his house after he saw his boys off.

Akua Yankey: My love I saw what you and your boys did and to me I felt it was not necessary for you to go that mile.

Opana: My dear you are not feeling well so please go and have some rest. I have had enough of that woman on this compound, I believe it is high time she is taught a lesson in this house. If I said I was ejecting her right now, it was going to take between 3 to 6months before I throw her out of my own house but with this room without roof, we shall see if she will stay for another day even on this compound.

Akua Yankey: But my dear she is a human being and deserves a little respect and privacy if possible. Am not in support of this my love.

Opana: I wasn’t expecting your support or endorsement on my actions my dear. Don’t worry you head on a matter that has no value to us, I have already executed my plans and admonishing my plans won’t change anything that has already happened. What I was expecting from you was for you to be asking me how bad my shop was damaged and not this PhD holder of gossip.

Akua Yankey: I had the intention to ask you that question until I saw you pulling down that woman’s roof.

Opana: Well luckily for me and you, it was half of the shop that got burnt so I have instructed the boys to put the shop in place and take pictures of the place.

Akua Yankey: Pictures? Is that necessary at this time? We must rush to the place to see how the place is before the boys take advantage of the situation and ransack your shop.

Opana: Relax woman, don’t worry your head about my shop, everything is under control my sweet wife. Please prepare Banku and okro stew with big crabs for me, that is what I feel like eating this evening.

Akua Yankey: My love are you sure you are very okay? Your shop which brings money to this house gutted fire and you don’t even look bothered at all. You even have appetite for food, you are full of surprises my dear.

Opana: You worry your head on things that are not necessary my dear. Okay to calm your nerves down I want you to know that, the shop has been insured and I called them to inform them about the fire. They said the will come and inspect the place tomorrow morning so that is the reason why I told the boys to take pictures of the place.

Akua Yankey: Ah what a sweet news to hear at the particular time of misfortune. Where is Bernice, come and take this money and rush to the market and get me some ingredients for okro stew preparation. Today I will do a very special meal for you that even when you have fed to satisfaction you will still want more.

Meanwhile at the police station the commander has received a letter from above that he has been transfered and the letter takes effect the very moment he reads it and sitting before him in his office is the officer who is to succeed him in his office as the new commander. He is not happy that he has been transfered to the national headquarters because he thought he was going to go on retirement at his current post as a district commander.

Back in Opana’s Compound:

There is a loud knock on the door which turns everyone’s attention to the door.

Opana: Hope it is not that disrespectful daughter of that gossip. Bernice please check who is at the door.

Bernice : (opens the door and sees armed police officers in uniform standing infront of the door) How may I help you sir?

Police Officer: Young girl where is your father is he inside the room? Tell him there are some police officers looking for him.

Opana: (screams from the room) Bernice who is that at the door?

Police Officer: It is the police please come out right this moment.

Akua Yankey: Police? My God not again this time, my dear you see what I told you earlier on, I was having the feeling that your action will bring great repercussion. Please don’t go out there my love, just go and hide in the storeroom so I go out there to face them.

Opana: My dear can you please calm down? Nothing at all will happen so just relax and I don’t want to hear any word from you again until the police personnels are gone.

Opana walks out to meet the police officers outside his house with full confidence.

Opana: Yes how may I help you because I don’t remember inviting you over to my house?

Police Officer: Sir you are under arrest for unlawful entry to this young lady’s house and creating a mess over there. Please be warned that anything you say here will be used against you in the court of law and you have the right to an attorney but you can only make that call when we get to the police station.

Opana: Did you use the word “unlawful entry” in this compound of mine? Have you even made a move to that place to ascertain the damage of the place in the first place?

Police Officer: Well a team of officers have been dispatched there to check the place out so that is not for you to worry. (pulls a handcuff out to put it on Opana’s hand)

Opana: Youngman are you mad or something? Did you just pull that rusted handcuff on me? What do you think you can do with it? Am I resisting arrest and do you by chance know who you are standing before?

Police Officer: I don’t want to be rude but am not sure you are God or the Inspector General of Police. You better keep quite and move before I bundle you into the car like a thief, I am treating you gently only because you are an elderly person. You think because you are a landlord you and God are on the same platform, behave yourself right now before I show you the bad side of me.

Opana: Mmmm let me see your shoulder first, so you have not even gotten to the rank of an inspector and you are standing infront of me to command me like you are even more than the IGP. God please give me the spirit of patience if not blood pressure will kill me. And you young lady the fact that you have taken steps first to the police station doesn’t render you a victor. I love litigation more than an Akyem man even, am the first Akuapem man who litigated with a Whiteman for him to withdraw his case from the supreme court.

Eno Bruwaa’s Daughter: Then am going to be the first person for you to lose your first litigation case with. You think we are that weak for you to trample on us just like that. You haven’t seen anything yet.

Akua Yankey: So why didn’t you come and see me first before you went to the police station young lady?

Eno Bruwaa’s Daughter: Madam did you husband see you first before he came to pull our roof down?

Eno Bruwaa: Ask her for me my daughter, they painful part is that he sold the roofing sheets infront of me for an amount of fifty Ghana cedis and shared the money amongst his boys.

Akua Yankey: Herh so it is true that you dont respect?

Police Officer: Please enter the car, guys let’s move.

Akua Yankey and her daughter rushed out of the house to pick a taxi to the police station after the police officers left the house with her husband. Michael later comes to the house to hear that his father has been arrested by the police, he rushes to house to get money and make a follow up. As he left the house, he bumps into someone and apologies to the person then he runs to stop a taxi. The person he bumps into starts asking people around who he was and why he was running from the house like a lunatic…….

*Will Opana escape the law this time around as his saviour and protector has now been transferred from the police station?

*Who did Michael bump into that the person has started asking questions about him?

To be continued



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