After waiting, networking, and having an alcoholic cocktail at the forefront of the State House Banquet Hall in Accra to keep the body and soul while enjoying some fine live tunes from an unknown band, with some carols music playing; here arrived some dignitaries, stakeholders, musicians and the President; Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his fine adopted African print, purplish in colour and full of smiles.
The programme which was held by the Musicians’ Union of Ghana (MUSIGA), has over the years been put together to raise funds for the Aging Musician’s Welfare Fund, as well as the MUSIGA Academy.
The Presidential MUSIGA Grand Ball is classy with good arrangements to honour legends, old and new with live music performance.
Also present to grace the occasion, just to mention a few, were; the reigning GJA Journalist of The Year award winner; Peace FM’s radio chairman, Kwame Sefa Kayi (MC for the occasion), former First Lady; Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings. She happens to be a regular guest since time immemorial of the MUSIGA Grand Balls. National Petroleum Authority (NPA) boss; Hassan Tampuli, and a host of other officials.
Speaking at the event on the 29th December last year, President of MUSIGA, Bice Osei Kuffour; Obour, who earlier was furious during a phone call; privately and later got refreshed, touched on the importance of instituting an Aging Musicians’ Welfare Fund, and also pointed out some projects the union is putting in place during his administration, such as the ‘Play More Campaign’, as well as the ‘Future Project’ to make life better for musicians.
President Akufo-Addo delivered a speech, commending musicians and promised to cater to the creative arts industry, as captured in NPP’s manifesto, and hailed the efforts of musicians both old and new; reassuring them of his support for the creative arts industry, and also purchased special souvenirs at an undisclosed amount to assist fund-raising efforts.
In his address, the President paid special tribute to the awardees, saying they and those before them, had put Ghana on the world map through their music.
He added by saying, the current generation of musicians, mentioning names of a few – Sarkodie, Becca, Samini, Shatta Wale, Stonebwoy, Kuami Eugene, amongst others – were playing their part in giving Ghana global recognition through the art of music.
Lifetime Achievement Honours were presented to five deserving recipients: Nana Ampadu (credited with over 100 albums), Jewel Ackah (27 albums), Obuoba J.A Adofo, Fante vocal legend CK Mann, and A.B Crentsil, the “Moses” song fame. They all took home GHc10,000 plus a plaque, and to add to the occasion, to put smiles on their faces was businessman, philanthropist, and politician and Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin North, Kennedy Agyapong, promised to give each of them a monthly donation of GHc 5,000 for the rest of their lives!
His pledge received a tremendous applause from the guests who included President Akufo-Addo, Nana Konadu Agyeman, Chief of Staff; Frema Osei Opare, Information Minister; Mustapha Abdul-Hamid and many other officials and stakeholders and revellers.
Hassan Tampuli who was the chairman for the MUSIGA Grand Ball 2017, in his address, lauded his predecessors for their foresight and sacrifices and the leadership of MUSIGA for the strides being made to develop the music industry.
Starting with a very impressed musical performance for the event came from the Vodafone Ghana Music Award (VGMA) Artist of the Year winner; Joe Mettle. There were other splendid performances on the night that came from Becca, who rendered a touching tribute to Awurama Badu before submitting her own lovely tunes, the “Bronya” boys, Wutah, also did a tribute to late highlife great; Paapa Yankson, Nana Ampadu, AB Crentsil, Daddy Lumba, and the megastar Freddy Meiway of the “Zoblazo” fame from Ivory Coast, crowned it all with an energetic performance that pulled many to the dancing floor and made the night a memorable one.
Some key items were also auctioned to support the Aging Musicians Welfare Fund, such as Paapa Yankson’s trumpet and flute as well as a painting of his portrait, Awurama Badu’s acoustic guitar, and Agya Koo Nimo’s pentatonic xylophone.
Finally, comedian DKB, setting everyone laughing their head off including Nana Konadu who once said the comedian is not funny, this time, laughed so hard, clapped so joyously and among others, gave him a standing ovation.