Stakeholders in creative arts share their expectations of government

Entertainment of Saturday, 21 January 2017



George Quaye ActGeorge Quaye, Charterhouse PRO

The newly elected New Patriotic Party (NPP) government is yet to properly settle into the business of governance. Nonetheless, many are the expectations of Ghanaians from all sectors of the economy. Among these are the stakeholders in the arts and creative industry.

Acknowledging that their industry has the potential to significantly contribute towards the economic growth of the country, a number of players in the industry have expressed their expections from the new government.

Arnold Asamoah Baidoo; Arts writer and critic

My expectations are in the NPP Manifesto. Clearly, it is one of the reasons Ghanaians put their trust in them and voted them into power. Tourism is a serious business and what excites me most is the resolve by the NPP government to make our tourism world class, project it internationally and maximise huge profits.

The establishment of theatres is also key. At least, two of such edifice should be built before the expiration of the four year mandate. Finally, the passing of the Creative Arts Bill into law and its implementation is paramount. Besides, the former minister was able to ensure that the Film Bill became law so the new government should implement it.

PaJohn Dadson; Writer, Tourism Promoter and Restaurateur

I want the new government to make culture part of the national development, accentuate the value chain of culture so as to make it more quantifiable and also invest in all our cultural assets.

Again, they must strengthen cultural institutions to help them perform better.

George Quaye; Public Relations Officer, Charterhouse

I don’t have any expectations from the new government. What I have are my talents, knowledge, my experiences, my qualifications, burning desire to do whatever I can to help this government and the next to achieve everything they have for our creative arts industry. I know the needs of the creative industry are many but resources including qualified human resources are very few.

If we could all be a little modest in our expectations and work harder in whatever it is we are doing already, if we could all talk less and do more, if we could all snap out of our comfort zones and upgrade, take on bigger challenges, break a little more sweat and give a little more of ourselves, we will soon realise that government is probably doing too much. So I expect very little. All I want is for the government to create the right environment.

Chris Koney: Artiste manager

It’s rather unfortunate that we find ourselves in a country where people love the arts but refuse to pay for it. In other parts of the world, the arts is treated with all the attention it deserves. Showbiz in general is about the show on one hand and business on the other hand. In the Western world, it is a multi- billion dollar sector which hugely contributes to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of those countries.

This isn’t the same when you come to Africa and particularly, Ghana. I think the new government will have a task of putting in place the needed systems and structures to ensure that the arts become a more viable sector and a solution to the several challenges confronting this country including unemployment and others.

Practitioners within the industry should be able to enjoy the fruits of their labour, for this reason, there is a need to look at the copyright and intellectual property laws and others that bothers on people’s creativity and talent. My expectation of the new government is to employ a calculated approach at making sure the arts and entertainment industry is repositioned to become more attractive, a major contributor to the nation’s development and also make the industry more beneficial to practitioners.

John Owoo; Arts Enthusiast

I expect the new government to establish outdoor performance venues and halls. It won’t be a bad idea to get people to have two of these venues in each region.

There should also be a Museum of Ghanaian contemporary arts and there should be a fund to support the works of artists. Again, government must invest in artiste management since it is a professional job which requires a lot of knowledge. By so doing, they acquire the requisite skills to professionally manage artiste as well.

Ahuma Ocansey (Daddy Bosco); Head, Special Projects and Communications, MUSIGA

There’s no desk for the creative arts at the sector Ministry. I just want the new government to take a better look at the Creative Arts bill because it is the bill that will set up the legislative framework for anything to be done in the creative arts.

I also want to see institutional support for the various professional associations in the industry. Having worked with MUSIGA for a while now, I have come to realise that for the creative arts to develop, the professional associations must be equipped to provide better services to the membership and contribute better to the development of the creative arts as a whole.