Many people aspire to do great things at a young age and taking decisions, classes and chances that would lead to the achievement of these dreams are a norm.
However, for the Oti Regional Minister, Joshua Gmayenaam Makubu, achieving his dreams was a lot harder than it was supposed to be.
Speaking on Personality Profile, he revealed that he had to have his leg amputated at age eight after a surgery to remove a tumor from his leg didn’t go well.
He told Lexis Bill that he had to let go of many opportunities because people assumed he was incapable of reaching such heights.
“People do not see me crying but I cried a lot. A social welfare officer told me when I was moving from JHS to SHS that I should go and learn tailoring. I was like ‘why? Why should that be so?’ Because, I have a disability you can’t even look at my results and encourage me to do something?”
He said that when he first lost his leg, as a kid, he did not understand how much his life was going to be affected by it. Mr Makubu stated that there were many occasions where he cried because of some circumstances he found himself in.
The Regional Minister stated that he wanted to work in the medical field, however, he missed out on that opportunity.
“When I applied for laboratory technician at Korle Bu after SHS, the day of the interview came and I went there with a senior. A guy was asked to come and take our original certificates, so when it was my turn he stopped and asked; are you sure you can do the course?”
“So he went in before coming back to take my particulars. His concern was because of my disability. I was completely demoralised, that I can’t remember what I said when I got inside for the interview.”
Mr Makubu added that because of reactions like this, his dream of working as a medical doctor was cut short. He also stated that he was discouraged from standing for SRC President while at Ho Polytechnic because of some comments from a colleague.
Years later, the Oti Regional Minister stated that when he was posted to Nkwanta South as a District Employment Coordinator, the people doubted he could execute his mandate.
“Those were genuine feelings because they didn’t know I was going to do it. I like such people in that particular instance. The same people after three months gave a recommendation for me to be made a government appointee,” he said.
He stated that because they had been convinced of his capacity, the DCE aided him to be elected as a presiding member, thus beginning his political journey.
Mr Makubu bemoaned how he shed tears because he was always judged even before he took some opportunities.
“Sometimes those things are there, you want to aspire and people feel like a person with a disability you have gotten a degree, what do you need a Masters degree for? I keep saying, let me do what I want, so long as the breath of the Lord is in me, let me fight until I cannot do it anymore.”
Mr Makubu said he had to take charge and capitalise on his disability. He stated that before people made comments on how being disabled will affect his work, he will allay their fears by talking to their concerns.
“It got to a point anything you say about disability will not move me because I had accepted the situation, I had gotten an antidote to any deficiency that the absence of a second leg would cost me. I had made amendments, alternatives were there.”
Personality Profile with @lexisbill: "People don't see me crying but I cry a lot."
Oti Regional Minister, Joshua Gmayenaam Makubu recounts why he had to rescind his political ambition way back in the University. #DriveOnJoy
— Joy 99.7 FM (@Joy997FM) June 11, 2021
“So I have always been telling people with disability that ‘yes you have a situation, I accept it but what is your backup? What is the alternative? What will people look at and even referring to your disability will not come up.”