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NATIONAL FESTIVAL of ARTS And CULTURE (NAFAC)

The Senior Minister, Hon. Yaw Osafo-Marfo, opened the 2019, National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFAC) with an appeal to the Media Practitioners in the country, to prioritise local content in their programmes.

He said the choice of selecting a very good local content programmes helps in the shaping of a meaningful National discourse for the country.

Hon. Yaw Osafo- Marfo expressed these sentiments during the NAFAC 2019 celebration in Koforidua, in the Eastern Region, which took place from 8th to 15th November, 2019.

The week-long Festival was under the Theme; "Empowering the Youth Through Culture, Tourism and Creative Arts for Employment and Wealth Creation".

He implored the media in Ghana to endeavor to use their space as a matter of priority to add culturally inclined programmes, since they help sustain Ghanaian Culture in all diverse spheres.

According to the Senior Minister, we must hold high the values of this country and help entrench them in our youth and also teach our children about our cultural values.  In effect, we need to organise our culture well and live by it.

He hinted that the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, (MoTAC) has received support from the Japanese Government to undertake a Training Programme at the Regional Centre for National Culture for Youth Development.

Hon. Osafo-Marfo outlined the various vocations such as woodworks, traditional pottery, ceramics, textiles, fashion and design, leatherware, basketry, jewellery and bead-making amongst other things, which are geared towards empowering the Ghanaian youth with economic livelihoods.

He further emphasized that the Government would embark on the Marine Drive Tourism Investment Project to open up Ghana to investors in Ghana's tourism Sector, to further create jobs and wealth for Ghanaians.

The Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Barbara Oteng-Gyasi(MP), on her part stressed that there was an urgent need for all and sundry in the country to protect our Ghanaian norms and cultural values from adulteration and foreign influence.

Hon. Barbara Oteng-Gyasi said Ghana's Tourism Sector has enormous potential, given that it is the fourth-highest income earner for the country.

She assured the unwavering commitment of the Government under Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo's administration to help realise the Ghana's Tourism industry to its fullest potential.

According to her, the "Year of Return" flagship programme organized by her outfit, has seen an immense benefit to the country, considering the influx of diaspora communities into Ghana.

 

She assured the citizenry in the country, that all available effort would be made by the Nana Addo's Government, to further sustain the feat chalked in Ghana's Tourism landscape.

The Vice-President of the National House of Chiefs who also doubles up as the Paramount Chief of the Abeadze Traditional Area in the Central Region, Daasebre Kwebu Ewusie, appealed to the Ghana Education Service to pay critical attention to the country's culture by promoting cultural education in schools.

On his part, the Paramount Chief of the New Juaben Traditional Area, Daasebre Professor (Emeritus) Oti Boateng, called for an aggressive youth-based initiative that would enable them to become employable.

Meanwhile, the activities billed for the NAFAC event included a colloquium, Regional Days, Music and Dance performances, Miss NAFAC beauty pageant and a day dedicated for the Youth A trip would be organised on the last day to some attraction sites in the Eastern region.

 

BACKGROUND

NAFAC is a biennial event which offers a common platform for all sixteen (16) regions of Ghana to display their rich culture and traditions.

The event is being organised by the National Commission on Culture (NCC), which is under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MoTAC).

The dignitaries who were present to grace this all-important and colourful event, were the Senior Minister, Hon. Yaw Osafo Marfo, the Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Barbara Oteng- Gyasi, The Deputy Tourism Minister, Hon. Dr. Ziblim Iddi Barri, TheDeputy Eastern Regional Minister, Hon. Samuel Nuertey Ayertey, The Chief Director at the Tourism Ministry, Alhaji Abudulai Yakubu, and some Heads of Agencies under the Tourism Ministry.

THE DIASPORAN HOME COMING EVENT 2019, HELD IN ACCRA.

As part of activities to mark one of the flagship programmes on the calendar of events of the Ministry of Tourism Arts and Culture, the Ministry through one of its agencies, the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) organised the “Ghana Diaspora Homecoming Event” under the “The Year of Return Ghana 2019‘programme.

The opening ceremony of the Ghana Diaspora Homecoming celebrations kick-started on Wednesday July 3rd, 2019 with a summit at the Accra International Conference Centre, under the theme: “Recognizing Diaspora Contributions towards Nation Building” and is expected to end on Saturday 6th July, 2019,

The occasion was officially used to launch a cloth for the year-long programme, which marked a historic and memorable event for African diasporans who were at the programme.

The ‘Year of Return’ cloth comes in two colours, Black and White which were showcased to participants at the summit by Miss Tourism Beauty Queens and other models, who donned the colorful Ghanaian cloth in different styles including Kaba and slit, shirts, skirts and other traditional attires. 

The president of the Republic of Ghana, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, graced the occasion as the special guest of Honour,  where he charged the organizers of the programme to live up to their bidding in making the YEAR OF RETURN programme a memorable one.

He also admonished stakeholders in the Tourism sector in Ghana to as matter of a priority improve on their service delivery in making their guest feel at home.

He used the occasion to commend members of the diaspora community for their relentless contribution to the socio economic improvement of the country.

Opening the ceremony, the Minister of Tourism Arts and Culture, Hon. Barbara Oteng- Gyasi implored all African brothers and sisters from the diaspora to endeavor to take a keen interest in participating in the event and also patronize the brand cloth for the Year of Return 2019.

Hon. Barbara Oteng Gyasi, also used the occasion to charge Ghanaians to further exhibit their Ghanaian hospitality to the visiting tourists and other guests who would be arriving in the country to participate in the Year of Return programme.

The Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon.  Barbara Oteng Gyasi, used the occasion to officially present a piece of the ‘Year of Return’ cloth to the H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo Addo.

The high powered government functionaries who also attended the all-important programme were the Minister for Information, Hon. Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, the C.E.O of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre Mr. Yoofi Grant, the C.E.O of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr. Akwasi Agyeman, the C.E.O. of the Ghana Tourism Development Company, Mr. Kwadwo Odame Antwi and the Director of Diaspora Affairs at the Office of the President who also doubles as the Chairman of the Year of Return Steering Committee, Mr. Akwasi Awuah Ababio.

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE YEAR OF RETURN

The event is aimed at creating the enabling environments for all Africans in the diaspora to return home “Brafie” not only to experience culture, warmth and rhythm of Ghanaians but also to explore business opportunities in the country.

BACKGROUND

The Year of Return event, seeks to commemorate 400years since the first enslaved Africans arrived in Jamestown Virginia, USA, from the Shores of Ghana and other West African Countries.

ARTS PRACTITIONERS SHOULD BE ASSURED OF MY ENGAGEMENT AND SUPPORT – BARBARA OTENG GYASI

The minister-designate for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Barbara Oteng Gyasi during her vetting with the Appointment Committee on Friday, March 15, 2019, admitted her awareness of the agitation in the creative industry because of the feeling of being neglected. This she explained was due to the attention given more to Tourism at the neglect of the Creative Arts because the ministry was initially a Tourism Ministry and the Creative Arts was a later addition.

Ministry Overview

The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture was renamed in 2017 through Executive Instrument E.I28 Civil Service (Ministries) Instrument, 2017 by His Excellency the President, Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo to replace the then Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts. The Ministry’s policy directive is to provide a firm, stable policy environment for effective mainstreaming of Ghanaian arts and culture into all aspects of national life. This it is believed will help in ensuring the emergence of a strong, vibrant and creative environment that would help improve and advance the Tourism, Arts and Culture industry in Ghana.


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