Good day, this is breaking news on EntertainmentGhana TV with me Jorge Agyeman and ahead in the news, questions are being asked whether Van Vicker, a movie celebrity in Ghana spent his foundation’s money meant for a donation on a movie that never came out.
At Dansoman now, is my colleague and correspondent for EntertainmentGhana TV Pharrel Amankwaah who is standing by with a source who used to work with the movie celebrity. If the feed is good, let’s cross over to Dansoman, a suburb of Accra and find out the full details.
(Jorge’s question) Pharrel is everything ok with the source and has he agreed to talk to EntertinmentGhana TV? Yes… (Pharrel answers) the source has agreed to talk but wants to be known as an anonymous source, but claims in the right time he will reveal his true identity.
That’s alright (Jorge talking) with us, if he is ready like our listeners are; take us through the interview with him, Pharrel answer, that’s true, we can’t waste any more time so I will jump into the interview with him.
Pharrel, good day and welcome to EntertainmentGhana TV, want you to tell us what you do, who you are and your connection with Van Vicker.
Source, I am a student in one of the private tertiary institutions in the country now, and I was a former member of the foundation, that is the ‘Van Vicker foundation’.
Tell us how you met Van and how you started working for him, (Pharrel’s next question) well, I used to organize celebrities from Accra to my region and hometown to be specific, with the aim of using the influence the celebrities have to positively impact their young ones and fans.
I started this is 2007, 9th June, I had ministers coming to talk to the young ones in my home town and I brought Obour to the region as well, to come inspire the youth on how they can become their dream picture in future. So in working with some ministers of state and music celebrities I decided to bring a movie actor and i find the person in Van Vicker who in 2007 was doing great and was my personal favorite.
With such aim, I managed to come in contact with Van, who agreed to come to the region but also introduced his foundation called the Van Vicker Foundation to me. We could not talk more on that issue because Van had to travel outside the country, so I had to wait till he comes back from his trip.
Even though he promised to come for the show in my region, he could not because he had to travel, but showed happened without him any way.
When Van came back from his trip, I met with him to discuss the foundation he had. Because I felt it was an opportunity for me to work with my favorite star.
When we met to discuss about his foundation, Van hardly knew the “OBJECTIVES” of his own foundation, the foundation did not have an account, and the people who worked for him then were volunteers, Van Vicker was not paying them.
I agreed to work with him on his foundation, so I developed the ‘OBJECTIVE’ of the foundation and the aim of it, which was ‘TO UNEARTH TALENTS IN THE CAREER OF PROFESSIONAL ACTING’. This will be achieved by getting top actors and actress to share, teach and motivate the young energetic youth with the talent, passion for acting and how to become a professional actor/actress.
The form caused GH¢ 20, which makes a person a member of the foundation and also a menber of the Van Vicker’s production house called ‘SKY ORANGE’. The members of Van Vicker’s foundation were suppose to feature in any production Van shoots and help fix them in other productions, “WHICH HE NEVER DID”.
With set objectives and aim the foundation grew stronger and better, hence people started having interest in the foundation, am talking about sponsors and stake holders. The Foundation’s main sponsor was a US citizen called Mrs. Piyapi Johnson from the ‘Minnesota’ in the United States of America, who singularly gave money to the foundation to help support its projects.
With such sponsor coming in there was the need to get additional help and open an account for the foundation. I brought on one Lady by name Vivian who was the secretary to the foundation and for the account opening I asked Van when we are going to open it and which people becomes signatories to the account. All this while I had not spoken to Van about how he was going to pay me and I was doing all organizational work from my ‘POCKET’, he never for once commented on how I run the foundation.
After several push Van opened the foundation’s account in one of the banks and made his wife and himself signatories to the account. In disagreement I asked Van, ‘WHY HAVE YOU MADE YOUR WIFE AND YOURSELF SIGNATORIES TO THE ACCOUNT’ the account was opened with NIB (national Investment Bank), I thought this account was for the foundation and every money that comes in will be used to support young people who have the talent of acting.
In August 2008, the foundation upon several meeting decided to do a donation to the ‘Teshie Orphanage Home’, so Mrs. Piyapi was told about it. The package for the donation was; ‘A KIND DONATION OF PRODUCTS WORTH GH¢1,000’
Now, contributions started coming in from stake holders, in cash and in kind. All contributions made went to Van Vicker and not to the foundation. So I asked Van why is that, and that the contributions made should go to the foundation. Van never gave me an explanation on that as well.
Mrs. Piyapi sent the foundation $700 to aid in the donation to the orphanage plus other contributions that had come in, but the money and other contributions never reached the orphanage. We had already arranged with Teshie Orphanage the date for the donation and they were expecting us.
Van instead of using the contributions that had come in for the donation, he rather used it to shoot his movie called ‘FRIDAY NIGHT’. During the shooting of ‘FRIDAY NIGHT’ any time Van goes on location, he will ask Vivian (the secretary) to bring money from the foundations coffers after his wife has appended the signature. He took all the contributions made by stake holders meant for a donation to shoot a movie which never came out to the public domain.
May be if the movie was out, he would have sold some and paid back the contributions he took from the foundations coffers… Phareel; so tell us did your main sponsor (Mrs. Piyapi) get to know about this?
Yes, Mrs. Piyapi was told about the failure of the foundation not being able to donate to the orphanage, when she called to find out how the donation went because the date given to the foundation had passed like three days. Mrs. Piyapi just like the Teshie Orphanage Home was very disappointed, especially the orphanage who had made preparations to welcome us into their home.
So Mrs. Piyapi agreed to send money for the foundation, hence there was a need to set a new date for the donation. But other stake holders who contributed did not know that the donation was not made and all contributions went into a movie.
Looking at how things were going, I had to find out if I will ever be paid or given some money to cater for, if not for all some of my expenditure. Because I was staying here and working at Labadi, that is where Van Vicker Foundation Office was, and it is close to the La general office. When I asked Van whether he had plans of paying me a salary or allowance to aid myself, he said ‘HE HAS NOTHING LIKE PAYMENT FOR ME NOT EVEN AN ALLOWANCE AND THAT I SHOULD KNOW, THIS IS A FOUNDATION HELPING PEOPLE’.
Who have you helped Van, I asked him, you sold a form for GH ¢20 to nurture young people into the acting career, did you do it? Your foundation had a lot of contributions for a donation, did you do the donation? So which people are you helping? The movie shot by Van Vicker ‘FRIDAY NIGHT’ was supposed to have brought these young guys out but the movie tapes lies in your room.
After that encounter, a friend of Van who is also an actor (will not like to mention names) told me to be very careful in dealing with Van, because he is not straight in his dealings and can ‘USE’ people to his advantage. Far from that the foundation made of 20 people met again and decided to do the donation again, when he (Van) was told he agreed.
I spoke to Mrs. Piyapi, giving her the date for the second donation, plus other stake holders who thought we were going to do another donation, so contributions came in again. Van had to travel to Canada ,so it was agree that upon his return we will do the donation to the same orphanage.
I asked Van again, whether he was going to pay me, he gave me the same answer as before, NO!. But I should work when he returns, then we do the donation. I knew what his friend said was true. Mrs. Piyapi called and this time I happened to be the recipient of the call and the money she sent, simply because Van had travelled outside of Ghana to Canada.
When Van returned, I asked him if he has changed his mind on my salary thing, and he told me I never went into any agreement with him to pay a monthly salary so he can’t pay me. I then told the other members and him (Van) that Mrs. Piyapi has sent $500 for the second donation but Van has refused to pay me or anybody here, hence he is just using us so I quit.
Before that we had met with Obour in 2008 at the Alisa Hotel to plan on how we will be involve in the one Ghana peace project but I decided to back out because Van would have used the contributions from stake holders for his personal gain.
That’s how I left Van Vicker and his foundation. As soon as I left the foundation the other member also left, so I can’t really tell if the Van Vicker Foundation is alive or dead, but all I know is ‘A CELEBRITY LIKE VAN SHOULD NOT BE CALLED A ROLE MODEL’. Do you know that any contribution whether from Mrs. Piyapi or any other person does not come to the foundation and hardly did any member know the amount of money the foundation meant to help young people had in its coffers?
Hmmm! (Pharrel), Jorge are you there, I don’t want to say much on this issue, I will love to leave it for our listeners to judge this serious case. Our celebrities don’t know. Jorge but looks like some of them always want to make something off the very people who made them. Well all efforts to get Van Vicker on this issue by the Producers of ENTERTAINMENTGHANA TV has not yield any response as the celebrity’s has been hard to contact. For some of the members, they have refused to comment or share anything with entertainmentGhana TV saying that the celebrities are not who they look like and in a chat with the Orphanage, my source revealed that the VVF (Van Vicker Foundation) came there in 2008, in the months of July- August, saying that they will be donating to the kids, but never showed up.
My source even added that brochures among other things about the Orphanage were given to the VVF REP which was VIVIAN (the secretary) to aid them know how to go about the donation, but they never showed up. Hurting innocent children who waited to see Van Vicker the movie celebrity.
So if you can hear me Jorge back to you in the studios of EntertainemntGhana TV and is bye from me inside Dansoman.
Thank you Pharrel for that thought provoking story, I warn that other young guys dealing with celebrities in the form of NGO’s and foundations will be more careful.
Well that’s all for now in today’s breaking News on EntertainmentGhana TV, my name is Jorge Agyeman, thank you for staying tune.