Though they are always quick to criticize associations in the entertainment industry like the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA), the Ghana Actors Guild and the Ghana Association of Phonographic Industry (GAPI) among others, art writers in Ghana don’t have an association of their own.
Art writers in this country are currently undergoing serious condemnation over what is perceived as their failure to solve their own problems with the formation of a simple union to champion their cause.
For some years now, art writers have been trying to form their own association, but without success. This failure was repeated in March last year, when some art writers tried reviving the Art Writers Association of Ghana (AWAG) to create a platform for members to share ideas and broaden their scope in news coverage. Beatwaves has gathered that members of the association have stopped attending meetings; but anytime they meet at programmes, they enquire from each other if the association still exists.
Members first met at the premises of Busy Internet in Accra where the name AWAG was decided on via majority vote. At that meeting were big names as Nana Benyin Dadson, editor of the Graphic Showbiz; William Asiedu of the Mirror; Paa John of Charterhouse; DJ Amess; Arnold Asamoah Baidu, now editor of the Weekly Fyla Magazine; and Eugene Nkansah, producer of Peace FM’s Entertainment Review programme, who was the brain behind that meeting.
There were also the likes of Nana Ntri, also from Fyla Magazine; Isaac Yeboah, editor of P&P; Mantse of Jive; among others including BEATWAVES. During that meeting, various issues came up for discussion including the issue of event organizers not respecting writers, traveling, research and diversity in reportage among other important issues which had been ignored in the Ghanaian art writing.
The next meeting was scheduled for Friday, April 11 at the Chocolate Avenue, opposite the Ghana Broadcasting Cooperation (GBC). At that meeting, a seven-member interim executive committee was put in place to steer the leadership affairs of the association. Among them were William Asiedu of Mirror as the president, Ben Aurther of the Heritage as vice president, and Peace FM’s Eugene Osafo- Nkansah as general secretary.
Others were Paa John as organizing secretary, Rachel Efua Eduah of Heritage as treasurer and Eugene Kennedy Ntreh of Fylla as the public relations officer with Jonathan Thompson as the welfare officer. These officers were expected to be at the helm of affairs until substantive leaders were elected after the association’s constitution was ready. In view of that, another committee was set up at the meeting to draft a constitution for the association which would be later approved by the members with the assistance of a lawyer. But till date, that hasn’t happened.
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