Black Stars forward Christian Astu again has done God’s work in the Prison system of Ghana to offer a second chance to minor offenders who are serving jail terms as a result of their inability to pay fines sometimes as low as 200 cedis.
It has emerged that a 62 year old grandmother, Mama Theresa serving a 10 year jail term for possessing marijuana was on the verge of death following a serious health complication that needed surgery, with the prison system unable to raise funds for the emergency surgery. They had assistance from the soccer superstar, Christian Atsu who plays with New Castle United.
The Crime Check Foundation, a correctional and reintegration Non-Governmental Organization in Ghana got wind of the situation and sought for public support for the old woman which caught the attention of the Black Stars player who offered to pay for the full cost of her surgery and recuperation.
It has however emerged that Mama Theresa could not make it as she died in the course of the surgery.
The Black Stars player in an interview with Crime Check Foundation’s Ibrahim Oppong Kwarteng voiced his sadness about her death, also expressing worry about the neglect of prisoners by their family members when he was informed her family has refused to come for her body asking the prison authorities to bury her instead. He called for an attitudinal change.
Christian Atsu, the former Chelsea man has in previous interviews narrated how his childhood was beset by money problems and he lost his dad in tragic circumstances, with the family never learning the cause of death due to a lack of medical attention, which motivates him to help a lot of people today.
Growing up in Ada Foah, Atsu honed his skills on the streets before being spotted by scouts from Feyenoord’s African football academy. He said goodbye to his family, but would never see his father Immanuel again, who fell sick and passed away during his first six months at the academy when Atsu was yet to make it. His father was a farmer and fisherman.
His brother and mother looked after him and his twin sister as other family members scattered across the country to make a living.
Atsu eventually earned himself a move to Europe when Porto came knocking in 2010 and he concedes that he was lucky to find a way out of poverty.
Christian Atsu is now doing a lot of charity both in Ghana and the UK where he is plying his trade.