Entertainment Tue, 5 May 2009

Culture Minister visits agencies

Accra, May 5, GNA - Mr. Alexander Asum -Ahensan, Minister of Chieftaincy and Culture on Tuesday visited the Bureau of Ghana Languages (BGL) and the Community Youth Cultural Centre, a vocational and recreational centre.

The visit was to afford the Minister the opportunity to familiarize himself with the workings of the two institutions and also get to know their challenges. Speaking at the meeting, Mr. Francis Ehom Kwaw, Chief Director of BGL said that the institution established in 1951 was mandated to promote the cultural heritage of Ghanaians in 11 selected Ghanaian languages.

"This mandate was to be accomplished through research and publications in these 11 government sponsored languages namely; Asante Twi, Akuapem Twi, Dangbe, Ewe, Ga and so on", he added. Mr. Kwaw mentioned the dwindling staff strength of the GBL in its Accra and Tamale offices, inadequate funding to undertake projects, lack of markets for the Bureau's publications, lack of office equipment, delay in the promotions of staff and piracy of the institution's best selling publications as some of the challenges militating against the progress of the GBL. In response, the Minister appealed to the staff of the Bureau to work hard to generate some fund for their activities, adding that, he would also look into all grievances presented to him for possible solutions.

At the Community Youth Cultural Centre located at Kawukudi, a suburb of Accra, Mr. Dzaga Ameyi, Head of the Video Production Unit called for the restructuring of the general administration of the Centre to meet its objectives. He noted that, although the centre played a very crucial role in the reformatory lives of the youth in its catchment area, it was near total collapse due to lack of funds for its activities. He said that although the centre was under the Commission on Culture, it had for a long time been excluded from all the benefits given to institutions under the Commission. He appealed to the Minister to help promote the activities of the centre and also seek for sponsorship for its projects. Issues pertaining to encroachments on the Centre's seven-acre land were also brought up for discussion. The Minister said appropriate measures would be taken to address the challenges.

In a separate development, a delegation from a Chinese cultural troupe known as Gansu Provincial Cultural Bureau also paid a courtesy call on Mr. Alexander Asum-Ahensan to announce the presence of the troupe which in the country for a three-day cultural display at the National Theatre from May 5 to 7. According to Wang Lan Ling, Vice Director General of the Cultural Bureau, the programme formed part of a cultural exchange programme between Ghana and China adding that, they were also looking forward to a reciprocal visit by a Ghanaian cultural troupe. The minister praised the Chinese embassy for the initiative and welcomed the cultural troupe into the country.

Source: GNA