A Magnificent Kumasi Artisan Cry Over Neglect

Ghana

Some Artisans in the Kumasi Metropolis are crying foul over what they described as failure by successive governments to include them in national policies. According to them, they have been sidelined by the media, event planners and subsequent governments. Despite claims by past and present governments for the betterment of artisans, the reality was different. A visit to the Center for National Culture (CNC) in Kumasi reveals that most of the craftsman are unable to afford three square meals after a back breaking labour.

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The chairman for the Resident Cultural Craftsman, a group  at the CNC, Mr. Obiba, noted that the group has not seen a single person from the Ministry of Tourism  Arts and Culture for over a decade to even ask about their challenges. He explained that the Artisans at the CNC are well endowed with the skills needed to produced quality products but lack the financial support. Artisans at the Drum Carving Centre as well as Pottery and Ceramics Centre bemoaned the misconception by some Ghanaians that craftsmanship is meant for school dropouts.

The head of the Drums and Carving center,  Kwabena Nyarko, explained that a great deal of knowledge and skills  is needed to carve a single  drum. Richmond Oduro, a graduate at the Pottery and Ceramics Centre said block headed people cannot venture into artistic work. He stressed that government could use their expertise at the various Technical Universities instead of putting much emphasis on the theory aspect.

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