Hundreds of musicians in Ghana came together on Wednesday, February 11, 2015 in different cities in the nation to elect a new Management Board for Ghana Music Rights Organization (GHAMRO).
GHAMRO is Ghana’s only government approved copyright collective management organization for music. The organization is responsible for collecting and distributing royalties for the public or commercial use of music in Ghana.
The elections which took place simultaneously at the CIBT Hall in Accra, the Cultural Center in Kumasi and also at the Cultural Center in Tamale, brought together musicians, young and old. At the end of the very peaceful elections conducted by the Ghana Electoral Commission, who announced the results tabulated from the three centers, there was a lot of singing, dancing and merry making.
Speaking shortly after the swearing in of the newly elected Management Board at CIBT Hall Accra, the brand new GHAMRO Chairman, Mr. Kojo Antwi said, “I am humbled by the confidence entrusted in me by the music right owners in Ghana. I want to assure all Ghanaians and the international copyright community that from today, they will see a different GHAMRO, professionally run and focused on producing results for the right owners. I am happy with the quality of persons on the board and we are ready to go”
Speaking shortly after the elections, Chairman, Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) Chief Tony Okoroji who was present as an international observer said, “I have made many trips to Ghana during the period that GHAMRO has had its challenges. Today, I am very happy to witness the rebirth of GHAMRO. The process has been very professional and peaceful. The stage has now been set for COSON and GHAMRO to work together for the benefit of creativity in our sub region.”
The Acting Copyright Administrator, Ms. Yaa Attafua who watched the swearing in of the new board said, “I am elated at what I have just seen. There were many who thought that this day will never come. The commitment of the right owners has paid off. I am full of joy”
The members of the new board were sworn in by Papa Kow Acquaye , a member of the court appointed Receivers and Managers who have run GHAMRO since July 2014 when the Interim Board was removed by the courts. He said, “we are happy for successfully completing our court mandated assignment. We hope that everyone will learn from the GHAMRO experience that every public institution must be run with care, transparency and accountability” Other members of the Receiver/Manager team are Nana Aboagye Dacosta, Okyeame Kwame Nsiah- Apau, Enock Agyepong and Dorothy Habadah. The receiver/managers had the cooperation of Rex Omar and Yaw Oxbon who were appointed by the members in December 2014.
After the hotly contested elections, James Kwaku Tuffour beat Randy Noonoo George to become Deputy Chairman (Composer) while Ahmed Banda (Bandex) beat Dominic Anomah to the Deputy Chairman (Producer/Publisher) position.
Diana Hopeson, Zapp Mallet, Mary Ghansah, Nana Kwaku Duah (Tic Tac), Bessa Simons Henry, Augustina Addison were elected as Board Members (Composers).
They obtained more votes than Elvis Jackson Etuah, George Asafo-Adjei and Rev. Talented Arthur.
For the position of Board Member (Producer/Publisher), Benjamin Mensah (Big Ben), Seth Kwaku Amponsah (Easyway), Francis Yaw Manu (Teacher Redeemer) and Rev. Francis Boahene vied unopposed.
The new board will be formally inaugurated on February 27.
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