The 10th International Conference on Carnival and Masquerade Arts organized by the School of Creative Arts, University of Education, Winneba in collaboration with the Open University UK, Decolonization Education for Peace in Africa Project (DEPA) opened in Winneba, Ghana on Monday, December 4, 2023.
The landmark conference being held under the theme “Rhythm of the people; Tradition, Connection, Innovation, and Decolonization” has brought together academics, practitioners, and artistes from across the Caribbean, Africa, Europe, North America, South America and Oceania.
The three-day conference to be followed by a five-day Carnival and Masquerade Arts workshop event is expected to explore the meanings and value of Carnival and Masquerade Arts, knowledge exchange and practices across a range of themes towards the establishment of a unique co-designed, sustainable global platform.
In an address the Guest Speaker and Executive Director of the National Commission on Culture, Nana Owoahene Otu Acheampong lauded the University of Education, Winneba for its continuous engagement with the Commission towards promoting the cultural values of the Ghanaian people and Africa as a whole.
According to him culture plays an important role in nation building and challenged the various stakeholders to work to accept the significant role of culture towards Ghana’s development.
Nana Owoahene Otu Acheampong lamented that Ghana was yet to position culture at the fore front burner of its national discussion.
He expressed concern about the proliferation of new media and the adverse effects on the youth who in his opinion were the targets of the new wave of slavery which predominantly exploits new media, adding that many Ghanaians especially the youth are gradually falling for new forms of slavery, particularly cultural imperialism.
Nana Owoahene Acheampong, recognizing the fact that no society was static challenged Ghanaians to be mindful of aspects of other cultures and things to accept.
He entreated the media to lead the way in helping relevant institutions to promote the Ghanaian culture, values and arts to the citizenry, especially the younger generation.
In an exclusive interview, the Effutu Municipal Chief Executive, Hon. Alhaji Zubairu Kassim who graced the occasion underscored the importance of the conference at acknowledging Africa’s roots, fostering connections, embracing innovation as well as challenging the leftovers of colonial influence.
He intimated that the theme for the conference resonated profoundly with the evolving landscape of artistic expression and cultural identity.
Hon. Zubairu Kassim posited that tradition serves as the bedrock of the country’s cultural identity, providing a rich tapestry from which inspiration could be drawn from.
He charged participants at the conference to navigate the dynamic landscape of creativity by embracing new technologies, methodologies and forms of expression to bring about innovations. This according to him would breathe life into tradition towards ensuring its relevance in a contemporary context to open avenues for artistic exploration.
STORY BY: CHARLES BAAH ABOAGYE
ISD- EFFUTU MUNICIPAL ASSEMBLY
Source : www.osimpamfm.com