Kumasi based Abusua FM and Ultimate FM’s Austine Woode is one of the very respected broadcast journalists in the Garden City.
Over the years, he has carved a niche for himself as a very objective journalist, who says things as they are without fear or favor, the reason many of his listeners in Kumasi and beyond admire him.
But it turns out that all his listeners were not going to hear him do the fantastic work he has been doing so far on the radio in the last two decades because he wanted to quit radio way before the actual time he had planned to hang his boots.
In a very emotional post sighted on his Facebook wall titled ‘THE DAY GOD TOLD ME TO QUIT RADIO’, Austine Woode detailed how a misfortune nearly befell him while on the radio recently – which is why he wanted to give up on radio and probably go back to his hometown, Akumadan to plant tomatoes as he usually says.
Kindly read his full post below
THE DAY GOD TOLD ME TO QUIT RADIO
I had just been released from the hospital on Sunday and that was my decision not the doctor’s favorite. I asked for it because being in hospital these times is scarier than being sick and home
I felt I was well enough to go to work on Monday to host Di Wo Lane Mu, the drive time show on Abusua965
I should have listened to my wife and rested but I was adamant and wanted to go on radio to explain to listeners the President’s decision to lift the lockdown imposed 3 weeks earlier because of COVID-19. Little did I know I was rather going to die trying to safe lives
Radio and media work has been my passion in last 20 years and finding myself in that industry didn’t come as a surprise to many. A journey that started in 2004 from Kessben FM through to Luv and Nhyira FM and currently at Abusua965 and Ultimate FM
But I must say, that passion is no more not because of anything but what I wanted to change and do in media which sent me to radio is no more.
I have always wanted to share my informed opinion on matters of national interest and what better place than the media?
However that passion has dwindled because there’s a bigger medium to achieve those goals; SOCIAL MEDIA.
So lately, I’ve not been the bubbly and lively person I used to be on radio except when I’m playing Daddy Lumba songs or talking about my favorite genre of music, HIPLIFE
God however gave me a sign on Monday or not but I’ve become someone different after events at my workplace last Monday.
Like I said earlier, I got to work discarding the advise of my wife who is a nurse. She felt I had not recuperated well enough
I got to work and after planning for my program, I rested for an hour before I went on air at 3pm
It is my style to start my show with a gospel song that carries a certain message I want to convey to my listeners
I am not that kind of radio presenter who will play a gospel song and preach for over 30mins because that is not my style
I therefore carefully select a gospel song that carries a message and play, encourage my listeners to appreciate the words in the song and I move on to secular music
My gospel song for that day was “David Nyame” by ace Ghanaian Musician Hannah Marfo (Please listen to the lyrics in this song)
As with me every Monday, I play a lot of highlife music but with a theme. The theme for that Monday was “LIFE”
I played songs like “Sufre wo Nyame” “Brebre nowa” “Yedan wo” “Wobre na w’anya” “Mma Sika nni me so” etc
But like they say words especially music are very powerful and careful what you say with your mouth. The only song played on the show that I sang to and told listeners that the song had made me sad was “Se mmere no be so aa” by Daddy Lumba
Little did I know in singing the words in that song, I was getting ready to die 45mins later.
Please to be able to fully appreciate what I’m saying, try and listen to that Daddy Lumba song and you will know why I shouldn’t have even played and sang it that day
On the show I have a co host in Justice Agyekum El Lizato who presents the segment “Arabanko” at 5pm. So he normally joins me in the studio around 4:50pm. Also because of the Presidential directive for workplaces to ensure social distancing in these times, we have been working with a lean staff at work and not many people are seen at work
The time is 4:36pm and I’m still playing music and haven’t spoken for a while because like I said, I’m not really well. Then I pick up my LPMs to deliver them and what greeted me will go on to change my life forever
Immediately I picked the headset to speak, I heard a boom in the studio with lightening striking the console in the studio. I panicked and jumped out of my seat and realized the knobs on the console were burning with smoke
I rushed out to get technical support and it was then I realized it was raining but because of the music noise in the studio, I couldn’t hear or see because of the window blinders
The console was made of metal and I was likely to have touched the metal whilst delivering the LPMs. So I asked myself what if I wasn’t 1minute late but decided to deliver LPMs at 4:35pm? Would the lightening have been transferred from the metal console into my body? Only those in that field of work would know but if the answer is YES, then I would have been dead in my studio seat for 13minutes before El Lizato came in
I was shocked and afraid and I realized the meaning of life at that moment; precious but worthless in a minute
I stopped and rushed home and on my way, all I thought of was what would have happened to my wife and son
Will the work compensation and insurance be able to take care of them?
How would I have been remembered? The controversial Austine, the Daddy Lumba fan, Okikikoko or nothing will be of me after a year and only remembered on certain occasions like we talk of Heavy Dee, Spinash Freeman, Kofi Yesu and his friend, Yaw Owusu Garbah, Kwame Owusu Ansah and others
It could even be like the case of Confidence K Baah who was young and budding journalist before his death but you hardly hear people talk about his works unless there’s an issue he was good in and we remember him
Life is precious but worth nothing and that has been ringing in my head since Monday. The silly rumors that would have been said without having sympathy for my wife and family
From people using juju to kill me to my own juju I tried using on others killing me to “obi na abo me Dua”
But God saved me and given me a chance to get closer to Him and walk more in His ways
My advise to anyone who has read this is, on this journey we have started, there will trials, there will be trouble and persecution and many problems but one thing we must not forget is; HE SAID HE WILL BE WITH US EVERY STEP OF THE WAY
So once I have life, I’ll continue to tell others about the goodness of the God of Israel and when it’s time to walk away, I will rather be proud if people remember me for how closer I got them to Jesus
Thank you very much Prophet Eric Adjei
NB: apologies to the families of those dead referenced in this write up
May God continue to comfort you