The Honourable Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Barbara Oteng Gyasi led an official working delegation to South Africa to discuss and sign a cooperation agreement for the development of specific tourism projects in the country.
The agreement which was signed between the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Ghana and the GUMA group was signed on the 26th
of August 2019.
The cooperation agreement which was signed by the Hon. Minister and Mr Robert Gumede, the Executive Chairman for the GUMA Group and witnessed by Mr. Kwadwo Antwi, CEO of Ghana Tourism Development Company (GTDC) and Mr Blacky Komani, Dep CEO of Tourvest.
The areas of cooperation as agreed on in the MOU include: Assist in growing the Regulatory Environment, Review of Institutional Capacity, Assessment of Existing Facilities, Integrated Tourism Information and Communication, Commercialization of the Ghana Tourism Sector, Management System for Commercial Concessions, Investment Promotion Strategy, Wild Life Restocking, Development of Local, Regional and Inbound Traffic Strategies, Training, Establishment of Grading Council, Transportation and Logistics Plan, Development of Tourism Products and Direct Investment by GUMA in tourism infrastructure.
Other areas are Investment Promotion Strategy, Wild Life Restocking, Development of Local, Regional and Inbound Traffic Strategies, Training, Establishment of Grading Council, Transportation and Logistics Plan, Development of Tourism Products and Direct Investment by GUMA in tourism infrastructure.
Specifically, and in the short term GUMA will work with Ghana to development of products such as but not limited to Investment in the ongoing Marine Drive Beach front, Ghana Center of the World Project, A Cultural Village, “shipment of the Big 5 animals to safaris in Ghana, development of the Slave Trade Route plus the Gold and Cocoa Routes, Packaging of Traditional Festivals for international patronage and a Heroes Hall of Fame Museum.
During the visit, the Minister had the opportunity to have a firsthand look at the operations of some parks including the Kruger National Park in Nelspruit, the Lesedi Cultural village, the Tourvest Eco-Lodges, Gorge lifts amongst others.
There where high levels meetings also held with Infrastructure Finance Partners, Messrs. IDC and PIC to discuss detailed arrangements for securing needed investments for the Marine Drive Tourism Investments Project and Ghana Centre of the World Project among others.
The Minister also met her colleague, South Africa Minister of Tourism for bilateral discussions on how to promote cultural exchange and increase cooperation within the two countries where Tourism and the Arts are concerned.
Members of the delegation included the CEO of GTDC Kwadwo Antwi, Akwasi Agyeman of GTA, and Frederick Frimpong, Project Manager of the Marine Drive Project Office.
GUMA through its various companies employs over 10,000 staff members globally.
The group of companies has some of the top multinational companies as clients or partners and have made investments in Information Communication Technology (ICT), Railways, Energy Generation, Water & Sanitation, Property & Retail Development, Construction & amp; Engineering, Mining, Business Consulting, Private Equity, Human Capital Management & Training, Transport & Products Logistics, Private-Public Partnerships, Project Structured Finance and Tourism.
A team of highly placed executives and technical directors of the GUMA Group are expected in Ghana towards the end of September to initiate the process leading to the implementation of the signed agreement and to commence action on the immediate priorities.
THE DIASPORA & AFRICA: The Year of Return in Ghana, Be inspired.
"I was lost but now, I'm found. Was blind but now i see. It was grace that brought me safe thus far, and grace will lead me home". These are the sacred words of the Christian Hymn, Amazing grace. These words resonate with many Africans in the diaspora and African Americans who have made a conscious effort to rediscover their ancestral roots in Africa.
The feeling is ecstatic. So much emotion, joy, sadness and beauty to rediscover a home your ancestors left many years ago. What a journey it has been.
For many African Americans, its about a different kind of peace rediscovered. A special kind of connection with the African continent that is a dream come true. Where skin colour is not a determining factor of who you are as a person. Where young people can rediscover an identity, a culture, a serene way of life never known in the West.
The year of return definitely is a blessing in disguise for many Africans in the diaspora who have felt empty and lost in a Country they struggle to find an identity and recognition.
Africa has its challenges like all parts of the world. Africa is however a beautiful continent with so much to explore, discover and rediscover. IT gives everyone an opportunity to reassert yourself, your identity and create the world in which possibility abounds.
Visit the African continent and be inspired.
President Calls For Local Content In Media Programmes.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has called for the need to have local content in media programmes in Ghana as a matter of regulation, to preserve the rich Ghanaian culture.
The President said the future of tourism rested in the rich culture of the country and it was imperative for the media to promote that culture in a well packaged manner to attract investments for the growth of the economy.
In a speech read on his behalf at the opening of the 2019 edition of the National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFAC), by the Senior Minister, Mr Yaw Osafo-Marfo, the President said the Ghanaian culture was as relevant as ever, in national development and must be promoted at all cost.
He said “we cannot continue to be showing foreign telenovelas, cultures and programmes that teaches our children nothing on our national television, whiles our unique culture goes unnoticed”.
The President observed that there was so much potential in the Ghanaian culture with the unique feature of diversity, to educate our children to be responsible and create employment, livelihoods and the needed jobs for our youth.
In that direction, President Akufo-Addo indicated that NAFAC 2019 was premised on concrete achievements worth celebrating and not just an ordinary funfair, disclosing that with financial assistance from Japan, about 3,000 youth had benefited from pilot training programmes in culture and creative arts.
He noted that as contained in the 2016 NPP manifesto, government would progressively pursue the construction of Regional theatres mentioning the completion of some outstanding cultural infrastructure including those in the Eastern and Ashanti regions and plans were underway to complete the rest.
He explained that government was fashioning out ways to establish a Community Youth Cultural Centre and Craft Village at Kanda, Accra, through the private sector to provide suitable marketing avenues for art and craft producers and vendors.
He said government was also spearheading the Marine drive tourism and investments project to open up the doors of Ghana to international investment in tourism, culture and creative arts to create jobs, wealth and promote traditional craftsmanship.
Nana Kwebu Ewusi, Paramount Chief of Abeadzi Traditional area, in the Central Region and Vice President of the National House of Chiefs called for the improvement of culture education in schools, saying, “Science and Technology are only useful when embedded in the culture of the people”.
He said the Commission on National Culture was not well resourced to undertake the role and urged government to strengthen all relevant institutions mandated to preserve and develop Ghana’s culture to improve the economy.
Nana Ewusi, called on all to use the festival to strengthen the common bonding as a people even in diversity and appealed to politicians to eschew politics of insults, divisions and name calling ahead of the 2020 general elections.
Daasebre Professor Oti Boateng, Omanhene of New Juaben Traditional area, said Ghana was not economically independent and therefore must unite as people even in diversity to achieve the Ghana beyond Aid, which seeks to make Ghana a self-dependent economy.
The seven-day NAFAC underway in Koforidua is on the theme: “Empowering the Youth through Culture, Tourism and Creative Arts for Employment and Wealth creation”.
Agora Announces Aboya As Winner Of Its World Photography Competition.
“Songs of Freedom,” an arresting image of boys enjoying music by Michael Aboya, @eightman, a 24 year-old self-taught Ghanaian photographer, has been selected as “Best Photo of the Year” and awarded a grand prize of $25,000 during the official Agora Awards 2019 ceremony held in Barcelona on Wednesday.
After nine months of competition and more than 130,000 submissions from photographers all over the world, the winning image was chosen from 50 finalists.
Unlike any other contest, the #AGORAawards2019, in its third year and open to professional and amateur photographers who canjoin for free, recognizes the single most-voted photo of the year, without any photography genre categories.
For the past nine months, photographers from around the world have submitted their pictures to compete for the title of “Best Photo of the Year” and the $25,000 prize. Now the 50 finalists from more than 130,000 submissions have been announced by the organizers, the Agora Awards #AGORAawards2019.
This is the third year of the contest that recognizes the “single most-voted photo of the year, without any photography genre categories,” including amateurs and professional photographers alike who can join for free.
J.A.K. Foundation Launches Giant Uplugged Charity Concert, Set To Build An Arts Theatre.
GREATER ACCRA, GHANA - The John Agyekum Kufuor (J.A.K.) Foundation, an independent, non-partisan development oriented institution inspired by the founder’s vision, has officially instituted a musical concert dubbed, Giant Unplugged Charity Musical Concert in honor of the Ex-President, John Agyekum Kufuor and to raise funds for establishing an endowment fund to support the John A. Kufuor Foundation in completing its flagship leadership programs over infinite years, precisely the arts and theatrical projects.
The ultra- modern Kufuor center for Leadership and Governance, a facility under construction on the campus of University of Ghana Legon when completed would seat 500 people in its state-of-the-arts auditorium and other facilities such as conference halls, library, 15 offices plus a presidential suit, 5 seminars and mentoring halls, and recreational and restaurant facilities. This would be the center for all activities of the foundation. From the Kufuor scholars program to the annual lectures among others.
The launch which was hosted at the residence of the former president at Tetteh Quarshie, Accra will see the main event being stage on the 7th of December, 2019 at the Fantasy Dome, La, Accra. The concert is expected to raise funds to complete the project and also help produce leaders imbued with a strong sense of patriotism; leaders who are innovative, problem solvers, creative thinkers and knowledgeable in their respective fields of endeavour. It is a program known for its excellence in grooming transformational leaders of tomorrow.
The event was attended by notable and illustrious creative and art pratictioners, including actors and musicians, thus, Prince David Osei, Kalybos, Bisa Kdei, Captain Smart, Lucky Mensah, Coach Kwesi Appiah, Salma Mumin, Prince Yawson aka Waakye, Kaakyire Kwame Appiah, Bob Smith Jnr, Bismark the Joke, Fiifi Coleman, Harold Amenya, Legendary Kwame Ampadu etc.
The former president envisions an establishment of a peaceful, well governed and economically sustainable society in Ghana and Africa on the pillars of the foundation -leadership, governance and economic development. H.E the Chairman of the foundation believes that “Good leadership results in good governance which leads to good socio economic development” thus the foundations focus to develop good leadership characteristics among the youth of this country through it’s programs.
Last year, in raising 80 million Ghana Cedi’s, the foundation plans to allocate amounts for its projects as follows; 5 million dollars will be used to construct an ultra-modern center for leadership and governance, while the remaining 10 million dollars will be invested into an Endowment fund. The returns on the investment in this fund will be used in the running of various projects of the foundation. These projects include: The Kufuor Scholars Program (KSP), The Kufuor Young Entrepreneurs Network, Annual lecture Series on Governance and Development, The Kufuor Election Observers Groups, andThe Kufuor Prize for Best Community Leadership.
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