The Facebook MP of GHANA

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Who is Rodney Nkrumah-Boateng?
Short but very long question. Many do not believe it when i say that deep down I am a rather reserved person. I love to get to meet people but I also enjoy a quiet life. I studied French and politics at Legon and read law in the UK postgraduate. I simply love politics (from the sidelines though!!)

How did you become the Facebook MP?
It was a self-acquired title. A friend noted that I spent so much time on facebook firing all over the place on all manner of subjects and teasingly referred to me as Facebook MP. I said to myself ‘why not?’, and the rest is history.

How does it feel like being a virtual member of Parliament?
Very interesting. Some facebookers believe I am an actual MP. But I get lots of requests even as a virtual MP or assistance with getting jobs, reviewing articles/documents, seeking work transfers, getting ideas across to various authorities etc. It is great fun.

Don’t you think we can build on this and have a very active Facebook parliament for Ghana? Maybe  it  could be one of its kind.
Now that would be an interesting and novel idea. Why not?

Are  Ghanaians  maximizing the benefits of Social Media?
Not enough. I think it is a useful tool for social change, but then you need an educated population to access it and bring about the change. However I am a strong believer in the middle classes as agents for change.

What is it with you and 1931?
Club beer is simply the nectar of life. Any other beer is simply diluted horse piss. I refuse to call it Club, but I prefer 1931. I think Accra Brewery owes me some royalties for my raving on facebook of their product.

Would you pick up any appointment by an NDC government ?
It is extremely unlikely I would pick up an appointment from ANY government. I prefer to make noise from the sidelines. But never say never.

If you are recommended to pick up the position of the communication director of an NPP campaign team, will you accept it?
I probably would not but I would not shy away from offering suggestions from the backroom. I am not a very limelight person.

Which people have influenced you most on social media?
There are various brilliant people on facebook from whom I have learnt a great deal. Bright Simmons of Imani, who I genuinely believe possesses 3 brains all working full time 24 hours a day; Ace Ankomah, who has such amazing legal intellect and is a great teacher; and H Kwasi Prempeh, a law professor in the US, and the writer Nana Awere Damoah are among the many people from whom I have learnt a great deal on facebook.

A full week’s trip to one of Mauritius most beautiful beach resorts. You are to pick just one of your facebook sweethearts. Who will be the lucky lady?
Now you want to get me into trouble by restricting me to one lady. I believe in doubles. My two sweethearts, Esi Levels and Gretel Asigbe, would definitely lie on either side on me on the lovely Mauritius beach. No size.

Are  political leaders  maximising the use of social media to aid them serve their people better and are citizens using social media well to demand accountability?
Coming back to the point about literacy levels made earlier, social media seems limiting in a country like Ghana, where the educated are only in relatively small numbers. The politicians seem to prefer radio which has mass appeal and deeper social penetration. But re: the other side of the question, I think social media has been influential in dealing with corruption by the exposures that have been posted there. Government has on several occasions reacted to facebook postings on issues relating to corruption and I think it is an acknowledgment of the power of this platform.

Which constituents of yours will make it into your top five Facebook personalities ( all –time)
Top of the list will be my propaganda secretary Kofi Ofosu for his fearless and bold postings. Augusto Ameldia, Cat Hunter Iddrisu, Felix Amegashie, Maame AB and Justice Abeeku Newton Offei are all favorites. I love to follow on facebook. I wish I could cram 30 people into the slot of five!
How can we use Facebook to fight corruption in Ghana?
As stated, I think the middle classes are agents for change in this country and possess both the voice and the financial wherewithal to influence change. That power, exercised whether on social media or traditional media, can move mountains.

What is your view on the institution of marriage?
I have great respect for the institution and I am glad I live in a generally conservative society that values the sanctity of marriage. However we are witnessing a gradual decline in marriages and I think materialism and the ‘me’ culture account for it a great deal. I think a lot of people do not give marriage sufficient thought and preparation before jumping into it.

Any word for your constituents?
Keep being great, and thank you for acknowledging my parliamentary status on facebook. It would be nice if you could fund the provision of a V8 and a pretty personal assistant to aid me to serve you…lol.

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