Thank you, Madam Speaker, for the opportunity to add my voice to the tribute to somebody I had known as a brother, as a friend and as a Colleague.
I met the late Hon Henry Kamel Ford in Parliament in 2009 when I came here. I found him to be so reserved, such that it was difficult for me to approach him like I approached other people. After he had been appointed Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, I was to go to that Ministry for an information -- when I got there, I did not meet the Hon Minister but I was led to his office.
I did not even know that was his name but when I met him and had a chat with him, after about twenty to thirty minutes that I had left the office, I told myself that I had met a gentleman. I had met somebody who cares; I had met somebody who was so respectful, such that I told myself he was going to be a brother and a friend from then. I saw him to be a very gentleman, very sociable, well mannered, respectful, approachable, unassuming, et cetera.
Anytime I came to the House, wherever I met him or wherever I saw him, I had to walk to his table, exchange greetings with him, have a little chat before I came to my seat and he also did the same to me.
I remember when he was going to be vetted for the last post as the Regional Minister, some of his constituents came around and I was surprised he called me and he introduced me to all of them, including the wife and children and said “You meet a very good friend and a
sister”. I heard one of them whispering, “But she is an NPP”. He said “Yes, but over here, we do not do that; she is my sister, she is my everything”.
Since he went to the Volta Region, I never stopped calling him. Every forth- night, I called him. At a point, for about three months, I never, saw him, so I called him and said, “My brother, what is it?” And he said “Oh, I am battling with a little sickness but I will be all right”. I enquired and he said “I have a little blood pressure”. I said, “My brother, the earlier you continued taking your medicine, the better for all of us”.
Then he said, “I will do that”. I got shocked when I heard of his demise. What else can I say? Should I say, gone too soon, called home? I am short for words to describe his demise. Here we are this morning paying a tribute to a brother, a friend and a Colleague. All I will say is that his time has come. Ours will come but when? None of us knows. We need to pray to God, that He gives us the heart to do this work, the stressful work that we have decided to do. We need to pray to God for God's guidance and direction.
Finally, let me wish all of us, especially his close family, my sympathies, and to the people of his region and all other associates of the late Hon Henry Ford Kamel. I pray to God that He keeps the family safe until the time he is put to rest.
Thank you, Madam Speaker, for the opportunity.