I sold toffees and ice creams to survive – Dean of UPSA Law School.




Dean of the Law School of University for Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA), Prof. Ernest. Kofi Abotsi has in an interview on Joy FM, recounted the uncomfortable experiences he had to live through in order to make ends meet.

According to him, as a way of providing for his needs and that of the family, he sold toffees and ice creams on the streets of Accra at a tender age.

Speaking to JoyNews’ Lexis Bill on Personality profile’ on Thursday, he disclosed that parts of the Regional Capital where he plied his trade were, Mamprobi and Quarshieman.

“This must probably be perhaps from age 8 thereabouts all the way to 15 to support the house. Essentially just ice creams, well, I may have sold a couple of things along the line, I remember years before that I had actually sold toffees.


“Back in the days on the Quarshieman motorway, the extension wasn’t tiled, and there was a church in that area called Amen Amen, for those who know the church actually started on that stretch, and there used to be a huge refuse dump which was cleared and it was an open church, it attracted thousands of people back in the days.

“I used to go there and sell toffees and after we moved from that area and went to the family house which is in Mamprobi, I started selling ice cream,” he added.

The academician also noted that as a teenager he had no contact or strong form of relationship with his biological mother for 11 years while his association with his dad was sore because Mr Abotsi perceived him as too strict and a disciplinarian.

“My father and mother were not together so I lived with my father. I grew up with my stepmother who from all practical perspectives was actually my mother.

“I had a relationship with my mother. At age 4, I came to live with my father. My mother and I didn’t have a relationship for 11 straight years, the period I lived with my father. So when I was 15, I re-established a relationship with her and that contact has still remained till date.

“If you describe me as being a hustler back in the days, that description is apt because I didn’t have an easy life growing up, I didn’t have a particularly best of relationship with my father. I think in retrospect, my late father was very hard-handedness in terms of the upbringing of his children,,” he said.

He affirmed that despite his father’s harsh attitude towards him, he learned to be independent in life and that has played a role in his success.

“My late father was a police officer and so probably, it makes some sense and so in many ways, I would actually say that there were certain traces of abuse.

“I am trying to be quite careful in this respect because I do not think probably in his mind it was abuse, back in the days let’s be honest the upbringing of children particularly from the standpoint of parents they were quite physical in character and so there was a sense of which these were treated as a discipline but if you look at things of old in the context of today you will probably be unfair of how you judge them.

“But I think in my particular situation it was hard even by the standards of those days, my situation was beyond a little hard,” he said.

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