Otwinoko: The popular radio presenter who went blind after spitting blood

Kumasi-based radio presenter, Linsford Kwabena Asare, popularly known as Otwinoko, has recounted the events that led to him losing his sight.

Otwinoko was arguably one of the best and most patronized radio personalities in Kumasi in the 2000s. He began his mainstream radio career at Mercury 91.5FM, now known as New Mercury 91.5FM, where he hosted his highly-listened-to program, “Nsem Pii.”

On “Nsem Pii,” he focused on cases with spiritual twists or mysteries attached. His career nearly came to a standstill when he started battling health issues and eventually became blind. According to him, his downfall and loss of eyesight were orchestrated by very close associates and friends who were envious of his success.

Narrating how it all happened, Otwinoko explained that his woes and deteriorated health all began when he visited a hospital suggested to him by his close friend, Yaw Opoku. Otwinoko believes Yaw Opoku, whom he (Otwinoko) fed on many occasions and extended unwavering benevolence to, was part of the plotters of his downfall.

“It all began a year after I started working at Fox FM. I had this close friend known as Yaw Opoku. When I returned from the USA, I was experiencing severe backache, so I went to a public hospital for treatment. Strangely, the doctor who was supposed to treat me had to recuse himself because he had to travel to attend to a private issue.

“It was shortly after that Yaw Opoku proposed a visit to a very good doctor he knew. When he mentioned the doctor, I asked to speak to him, but Yaw Opoku said his phone’s battery was dead, so I went with him to see the doctor the next day,” Otwinoko narrated in an interview published on Otwinoko TV on YouTube.

He continued, “While at the hospital, the doctor detected some malaria parasites in my system, so they had to put a drip on me. After realizing I was Otwinoko, the doctor suggested I should be given a private room because of my popularity. I fell asleep and woke up suddenly to realize Yaw Opoku was taking a photo of me. I believe this was evidence to be given to his contractors to show that he had been successful.”

According to Otwinoko, he rebuked Yaw Opoku for taking photos of him. After the incident, Yaw Opoku did not accompany him to the same hospital for his next visit because he (Yaw Opoku) claimed he had to supervise a building construction. The popular radio presenter revealed that it was after his second visit that he started having eye problems.

He recounted, “After our first visit, I think it was a Monday, and I was supposed to visit the doctor again on Wednesday, but Yaw Opoku said he could not go with me because he had taken a contract to supervise a building construction. It was after my second visit, on my way home, that I realized I wasn’t seeing things clearly, so I had to park at Ridge Police Station for a friend to come for me. Since then, it was one health issue after another.”

When his health deteriorated further, Otwinoko narrated how Yaw Opoku prevented his family and some individuals who could help from seeing him when he was admitted to the hospital.

“It would shock you that when I was admitted at Komfo Anokye, the time when it was rumored I was dead, this same Yaw Opoku stood at the entrance of my ward and prevented my family and friends from visiting and helping me. During the same period, he was spreading theories about why I was sick, claiming an insecticide caused my woes.”

“After about three weeks of being discharged from the hospital, I was at home chewing sugar cane when I spat blood and the rest was history. I felt a very severe burning sensation in my feet and couldn’t see anything, I took my condition to hospitals in South Africa, Nigeria, and the USA, but it was all fruitless,” he explained.

On what informed his narrative that Yaw Opoku was the cause of his predicament, Otwinoko said he was vigilant and connected the dots. He accused Yaw Opoku, who is now deceased, of frustrating the nurses at Okomfo Anokye Teaching Hospital where he was receiving treatment to the extent that he prevented the medical professionals from administering the prescribed medication.

“I remember after I was discharged, my brother, a medical doctor gave me eyedrops. This same Yaw Opoku came to my house. I made someone buy a scratch card for me to top up my airtime. While I scratched the card, Yaw Opoku was shocked and asked if I could see again. So, I rebuked him. That was when I realised he was behind it.

“Three days later, I was watching television with my sister when I noticed I was gradually losing my sight. That was all; I couldn’t see anymore.”

According to Otwinoko, he has been to South Africa, and Malaysia for surgery but to no avail despite the whopping sums of money spent.

“The amount of money my family and I and some colleagues have spent hoping I would regain my sight, you have no idea,” he said.

The broadcaster said that, during Yaw Opoku’s lifetime, he consistently voiced his belief that Yaw Opoku was the cause of his blindness. He also openly dared Yaw Opoku to take any action, including summoning him to prove his innocence. Despite these repeated challenges, Yaw Opoku did not take any action to confront the accusations.

In what appeared to be a piece of advice, Otwinoko said it was prudent for people to avoid evil because the evil that men do lives after them

“I was admitted to Komfo Anokye, but I’m alive; such is life. Interestingly, the same ward where I received my treatment was the same ward where Yaw Opoku lost his life while under medical care. I survived, but, he did not. We should be very careful in life. You just don’t mess around with anybody,” Otwinoko warned.

Watch Otwinoko’s narrative from the 56th minute of the video below.

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