“You will learn, as you get older, that rules are made to be broken. Be bold enough to live life on your terms, and never, ever apologize for it. Go against the grain, refuse to conform, take the road less traveled instead of the well-beaten path. Laugh in the face of adversity, and leap before you look. Dance as though everybody is watching. March to the beat of your own drummer and stubbornly refuse to fit in.”—unknown.
He’s a different person, not the type of the everyday guys who get broken and beaten by unannounced storms. Get closer and you would understand why he keeps discovering new things and new ways of getting things done. That is the Mufti I stumbled upon.
He set out in yet another adventurous journey in the pits. Yes, in galamsey pits where life assumes the very nature in the state of nature; nasty, brutish, short and can only be survived by the fittest.
While others go looking for gold and riches, he went looking for lives to change. This time he didn’t go with a net to catch them, but he went caught in same net just so he could feel it and do it their way. Yes, he went undercover as a “bad boy” in dreadlocks ready to smoke, eat and sleep with them. That was how far he went with his undercover work.
So adventurous as he is, he got closer to one of these boys who is so young to still be toddling around his parents.
Iddrisu Sherif Bakoto is a school dropout who got caught in the unfortunate web of substance abuse. He couldn’t complete Salaga Senior High School for the same reason. And as a stray child by dint of circumstances, Sherif Bakoto went wild into searching for a new life in “Dolar Power”…a galamsey site in the Bole District of the Savannah Region.
As young as he was, and as known by the activities in these mining sites, young Sherif was used by his patrons and Godfathers for special activities (mostly social vices). It’s a long story to be told in this script, so you would have to watch the full documentary in due time.
So, in his undercover dreadlock and his pretentious dexterity in smoking, Mufti caught Sherif as a friend in the spirit and started to work on him. He got him convinced finally after some weeks to tell his story. Very pathetic it is.
Finally, Sherif was brought back home to his parents who lost him some years back. He was now ready to be reintegrated into society where he belonged. And very ready to be trained as a defensive driver—his dream job.
Wipe-Away Foundation took it from here, sent Sherif to the Progressive Driving School in Tamale and got him well trained and finally passed out with a temporary driving license A and B in defensive driving. He’s ready for the job market and the foundation would welcome any such support. In the meantime the Foundation is temporarily engaging him in it’s new project-SOHAT.
Finally, Wipe-Away Foundation takes the issue of the REHABILITATION AND TRAINING CENTRE for Savannah region to get people like Sherif Bakoto reintegrated into society as a project worth undertaking.
Like I said before, one doesn’t have to be wealthy, a royal, politician or a “big man” to change and influence society. You just have to be another Mufti and get his type of heart and ingenuity to touch lives. Expect more discoveries by Wipe-Away Foundation as time progresses.
He’s still an idiot anyway, but this time a big one with big brains.
By Issifu Seidu Kudus Gbeadese