The work of the ministry is policy making to create an enabling environment for the development of the tourism, arts and culture industry. Everybody in this country knows that the ministry has always been a tourism ministry since the first republic of Ghana. Most of the technocrats or the staff body in the ministry are professionally trained as tourism experts, nothing more, and nothing less. So there has never been anything on paper for the development of the creative arts industry, apart from the Creative Arts Bill grafted in 2015. Even though there is a cultural policy but it has not been that effective and operational; no funding has been allocated for the cultural development of the country; not even a fund for the development of the creative arts industry.
To achieve development for the arts and cultural industry, one will need a database by which the government would be able to ascertain exactly what should be done to grow the sectors. That is why the ministry from last year started embarking on the data collection exercise, to collate database of the entire creative arts industry for the development of the industry.
Mr. Richard Yaw Boateng, the National President of the Film Directors Guild of Ghana (FDGG), was assigned by the Honourable Minister, Mrs. Catherine Abelema Afeku, to go round all the ten regions of the country to analyse and collect data on the Ghana Film Industry, which would form the basis for the establishment of a viable Film Council. The ministry needs document to work on for the development of the Creative Arts Industry; those documents can only be acquired by researching on the state of the Creative Arts Industry. You don’t just get up and start doing things without bases.
As per the directive of the Minister, Mr. Boateng formed a research team called the Data Collection Team (DCT) to embark on the data collection exercise for specifically the film industry, which is one of the biggest jobs creators in the sector. He is to conduct the research, region by region, so we can ascertain the peculiar state of the film industry in each of the ten regions, so as to understand the actual situation and challenges of the film industry in each of the ten regions. Mr Boateng started the data collection exercise last year in Volta Region, which he has submitted the report, to the ministry, as a pilot for the entire research and data collection exercise. This would serve as the fundamental document that the ministry will use to plan for the continuous collection of data in the rest of the nine regions.
Research on other sectors of the Creative Arts Industry will be initiated within the first quarter of the year. So by the mid of this year, 2018, the ministry will have the entire necessary document for analysis and plan properly for the development of the Creative Arts Industry.
This is to establish the fact that the Honourable sector Minister, Catherine Afeku, and the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture are really working, behind the public’s spectacles, to lay the foundation for a proper take off for the development of the Creative Arts Industry.
RICHARD YAW BOATENG
FILM DIRECTORS GUILD OF GHANA (FDGG)