Val’s Day,prices of local products, COVID-19 and proactiveness

Yesterday, February 14, was Valentine’s Day. There are various stories about the Valentine’s Day, but they all talk about St Valentine, a Roman Catholic priest who lived in Rome in the third century Anno Dimino (AD).

And one of the stories that sounds plausible is that Emperor Claudius II had banned marriage for soldiers because he thought married men were bad soldiers.

Valentine thought the decision was unfair so he arranged marriages secretly. Subsequently, Claudius learnt of it and threw the priest into jail, sentenced to death.

The story ends that while in jail awaiting his execution, he fell in love with Claudius’s daughter and that when he learnt that he was going to be executed on February 14 of AD270, he sent his love a letter which he ended with the words, “From your Valentine.” Thus, the day came to be associated with love and romance.

It is on record that formal messages of valentines appeared in AD1500 and that from the 17th Century, people in the western world started celebrating the day with gifts of flowers. Then subsequently, various gifts were considered.

Contacts with the western world have caused February 14 to be marked annually and globally.

Today, Val’s Day is also described as Chocolate Day because in the 1840s, Richard Cadbury, scion of a British chocolate manufacturing family made heart-shape boxes in which he packaged chocolate for sale and patrons loved the box because it was associated with love and after eating the chocolates contained in the box, it could also be reused to keep things like love letters.

Ghanaians, especially the middle-income ones, have accepted to celebrate Valentine’s Day with chocolate but they complain of its prices as being high.

That prompts us to the fact that Ghanaian products are expensive, according to buyers.

It is said that cocoa is good for our health yet cocoa products are expensive for the lower-income families and so they lose the health benefits of these products, in spite of the fact that cocoa is in abundance in the country.

The same goes with vegetables and fruits, which have many health benefits, such that those who eat them can avoid life-style ailments like diabetes.

Therefore, we wish to appeal to the government to do all it can to help local manufacturers produce at reasonably low cost in order for them to sell locally at affordable prices.

That way, more Ghanaians would patronise made-in-Ghana goods to increase demand that calls for more supply and, for that matter increased production.

Once we are talking about Valentine’s Day and health, we must also look at Val’s Day and COVID-19. Before the emergence of the pandemic, Ghanaians celebrated the day with events.

Happily, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s ban on public events has saved the situation as we did not hear of any such events. Thus, we have saved ourselves some COVID-19 infections. This shows proactiveness, which must be greatly upheld in such critical situations

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