The Ghamro Story from the Vhim Lens.
This industry sucks and nothing can change that.
For many years MUSIC Royalties was collected and distributed by the Government on behalf of music right owners in the name of COSGA, in actual fact this was under the auspices of the Copyright Office. At least for the records since from 1987.
During that period, stakeholders of the likes of the late Faiziel Halwani, Charles Amoah, Carlos Sakyi & Co fought that system during if I recall the time of Bomsomprah, Alhaji Sidiku Buari, JOHN MENSAH SARPONG & Co.
Although there arose several attempts with sole objective to de couple the system from the hands of government it was not until the early 2007/2008 when the fighters realized that they couldn’t fight COSGA as individuals so they required full complement of the industry then the various associated movement started.
These associated leadership found a saviour in Carlos Sakyi with the objective to take the reins of Royalties collection and distribution from government into industry led hands,
This was with the singular belief that our monies would be best managed by ourselves.
For the records, several meetings went on behind closed doors some of which the Vhim Crew joined in 2008 because it believed in the cause of the industry being run appropriately as in the operation of normal collective management with right structures.
Meeting took place at the Abrantea Spot in Abeka Lapaz which was attended by the likes of Nana Ampadu, Gyadu Blay Ambuley, Amakye Dede, Carlos Sakyi, Abraham, Mark Okraku and many others with the same agenda.
There was never one meeting during this period that the likes of John Mensah, Awuku and the likes came up to join this struggle ever.
At the onset of meeting these industry giants, we made clear our mission to join colleagues in fighting a worthy cause as industry players against the system for our collective independent management of our affairs.
As a young and quite a new entrant, the likes of colleague Mark Okraku Mantey who at the time represented Producers did confirm my participation as a full member of GAPI. Indeed, I did receive the recognition of confirmation of my role in assisting the fight as member of various committees and also contributed my quota in expenditure.
Our struggle was intense for close to three years such that by 2010, our numbers had grown significantly powerful that government’s only option was to ensure the passage of the law to bring about the independent struggle which we sought for all our efforts.
I do recall that one of such was our meeting with the select parliamentary committee at Koforidua to finalize the law which was being held without our knowledge until we got wind of it late. We stood for the removal of the Security Device from the law as with arguments of being a tool of hindrance to the business since it became a single instrument with which public officers and some industry players enriched themselves. I do vividly remember that I raised the objection to that part of the law to the extent that at the end of the day it was Captain Nkrabea Effah Dateh who sought clarification on the issues I raised. At that time, I drew attention to the era of digitization that was in process such that the era of Cassettes and CDs were soon giving way as obsolete formats for which the stickers cannot be an instrument to be placed on computers/internet works to protect the songs. To day we are in that era.
Fast forward to 2010, It was our movement AMRO that championed push for the passing of the law and for the records took the lead for the license to enable the start of CMO operation in Ghana. In fact, due to the number of associations that were involved in the struggle, we came to the collective decision to select each member of the associations to form a board which took over from the ICMT that supervised the liquidation of COSGA.
Our clear agenda was to takeover our own affairs, go through a proper electoral process since, the rights involved were individual rights and not rights belonging to associations.
In so far as we were concerned, we finished our part of the work and had no need to be part of the board reason why we left to show proof of transparent intention which each of the participants should have, eventually we went back to our various Music business. It was later that we got to know of the untoward wrangling and personal mafia tactics that took place at the last meeting before the issuance of the license. This elimination by rough tactics in the same group ended up with Carlos in 2011 taking full center stage and control of the Society, GHAMRO.
For the 2 years of the Carlos Sakyi led administration which also included the likes of John Mensah Sarpong & Co, they operated contrary to all that we had agreed, first it was against the constitution. We all agreed that it was going to be temporal board to enable us work for elections and secondly tackle the very issues we had fought against.
To the extent that no General meeting and Accounts was even rendered during the time and this was totally in sharp contrast to what we fought for. Come to think of it that it was even against the very legislative instrument, LI 1962 which we all pushed to be passed.
Just for those who have so soon forgotten it was for these reasons that we once again supported the cause in 2012 of the Nana Ampadu and 99 others suit that took GHAMRO to Court and won on all grounds. It is important that we situate that when the need arose once again for the Court to appoint Officers as interim Board to ensure proper and legal elections to be held, the VhimCrew was highly recommended for the work done.
This resulted in our participation with me as a known Publishers, Okyeame Kwame as Performer, Aboagye Da Costa as Composer, Reps from Attorney General and Copyright Office.
We were given 6months to complete the Job which we did and handed over in the 7th Month which records are there for all. None of us stayed but rather we conducted the election and handed over to a new board with good handing over notes of what we have done to the extent that we sent copies to the court that appointed us.
For us and many other readers, we’re about to read how all GHAMRO internal problems started.
Now when the gang of CARLOS, John Mensah Sarpong, KK Kabobos were kicked out of office by the court order, they rallied back to the same fighters at Abrantea spot since it was not properly disarmed and dissolved after they were used in the COSGA battle.
With the participation of other old war veterans like Gyedu Blay & Randy Nunoo, who found comfort in AMRO as reps of associations to be at GHAMRO.
It was for this same reason; that CARLOS refused the conduct of elections after GHAMRO was licensed in order for it to attain the full independence that we all fought for.
It is worth for the reading public for me to recount a few of the issues which came up then which today some of those persons are the ones shouting on rooftops as if they are saints.
When we were sworn into office as Court Officers and Interim Board, we worked with the staff that we met during the Calos Sakyi’s administration because we believed in continuity. In our review of work, we realized that the IT department was virtually a waste on the resource of the organization as the staff was drawing monthly salary without any work. In fact, for the records, the other IT Officer was never in office but also got paid salary. Yet for all these Ghamro had no social media accounts, its website was outdated and common interactive Facebook page was never functioning.
As appointed Officers and for that matter people placed in a position to correct issues, we directed this to be fixed immediately. When we did not get the results needed, we directed further that the entire IT should be put out on contract to ensure more professionality as the tenets of the IT industry demands. To our surprise, they refused as they preferred to rather sit doing nothing and just draw salary like previously. Let me state for the records that at that time Ghamro bought cameras and other items for these same people to help them do their work so the question is that which person would allow such an attitude in his or her company if it was his own business.
One of such is this Awuku Hagan who was then the IT Officer at GAHMRO. In fact, as a staff, he chose to rather be feeding his previous masters who appointed him with all sorts of chaff information by twisting facts just to cause unnecessary tension. Against all this he refused the option to work on contract so his appointment was terminated by the administration. If not for this that he has had issues with me till date then what else as I never knew him from Adam.
For me in so far as I’m appointed to do what is right it does not matter the person involved, we did the right things for the cause of Ghamro by putting the industry issues above anybody’s personal interest.
Please lets find out from him the whereabout of the Ghamro camera and other equipments. At the same time it is also worth mentioning that one Staff who worked diligently and professional during our tenure was one Madam Anabel Adu- Gyamfi who we highly recommended to the new board, today I’m aware that she has risen as Head of Documentation which is what HUMANS SHOULD DO AND NOT SUCH PERSONS LIKE HAGAN AWUKU.
Our records are intact, in that after the subsequent elections which Kojo Antwi became the Chairman, the Vhim Crew once again went back to its Tema base to continue with its businesses.
Now back to that core group which was left at Abrantea Spot, they metamorphosed into Miscreant and have since become the BANE of GHAMRO since their main purpose is to see to it that GHAMRO never works just because their beloved Carlos Sakyi was kicked out of office Legally.
Because most of these members are naive, people like Awuku Hagan have become suddenly born again leader with so called a lot of information because he was in the IT department and foolishly some believe him. For the records he has been campaigning for FIVE long years so the question is if he is an IT person as he claimed, does he have no other job than to fight to be back at Ghamro even though he is NOT a Ghamro member?
The question is for the public to ask him if he has no other work so they can find him some gainful employment.
I was not surprised when he had the audacity to take his folly to the Halifax show on Okay fm to tell the world that he installed cameras at the Ghamro offices.
He is simply a fool to even say that because if a Court had taken over the place, you cannot have any footages of anybody ransacking Carlos’s office because the takeover was by the court. In any case where is that footage, well only cheap minds can be deceived.
Ask yourself which fool will believe that the Carlos you knew will leave his items behind when he knew what the court judgement meant, even after the judgement why will you think that till date the Carlos you all know will be quite till date. So, it’s pathetic to have all manner of people including idiots and perceived sensible persons believe such stupid stories.
The simple fact is that by the judgement delivered by the honourable judge, Carlos & Co were sacked outright never to set foot within the precinct or premises of Ghamro else it there would have amounted to contempt.
It is unfortunate that the very people who you expect to know better could not request for evidence when sort of drunkards were saying they were speaking on authority. Unfortunately, this is how far and cheap this Industry has become that people of such character could be on radio saying they installed cameras and have footages of the organization that employed them and worked for and receive salary and no one is offended to the extent that he is being interviewed to speak on authority. No one even asked for whatever tape or footage he has to play as evidence to verify whether he is lying or not. Are we all gullible at least not me? Do you even think he would keep such footages if he had any for this long considering how bitter he is?
Well for the records CARLOS never accepted the Court Judgment and went as far as the Supreme Court where he and his followers had their case thrown out and re-enforced the High Court Ruling and that’s when he went into oblivion.
Just this Saturday, I heard another bitter and confused old GHAMRO board member John Mensah Sarpong on Christian’s show on Onua fm also making all sorts of baseless and senseless accusations against me.
Knowing the state of the industry we live in, I do understand but trust me all these bitterness and useless cheap talk will soon end once the results of all their machination become a reality.
If they have anything to offer, why did they not do it when they had the opportunity in office from Sidiku time, GAPI, COSGA, their own organization from 2011 – 2014 at GHAMRO.
Those listening to them, please go back and check their track record that suddenly they have the guts to talk for people. Just go back to their time in office, review the records on the radio talk of all that happened
– They purchase a Toyota Sequoia with 55,000ghc of Ghamro money and packed it in their house till we took it to EOCO.
At lease today the car is sitting there for all to see
– They paid themselves all sorts of allowances, in fact this Mensah Sarpong was head of the northern part of Ghana for the collection of royalties so how did we fare in royalty collection and what was the state of the office.
– How did they share royalties, did he not have a list of his own members of his association that he collected on their behalf? is that how royalties are shared?
– Has he ever spoken to how some personal funeral was organized when that issues came up on radio?
– What about the audit report of over 21billionn cedis of Ghamro funds that remains unaccounted for by the Special audit they themselves requested for and was conducted by the Audit Service under the direction of the office of the Attorney General during their time. And what has the Attorney General also done about these financial misappropriations since he ordered for the audit?
What about the visit to our own C.K.Mann at Takoradi I mean who in his right senses will take funds to the tune of GHC 10,000 to visit this legend under assistance, travel all the way to Takroadi only to give him GHC 700 yet spend over 7,000 and could not account for the balance, all under their watch? I speak on authority because the audit records are available so they should speak to it.
Such person like JOHN MENSAH who was part of these whole group of people have not been able to speak to this matters yet have the effrontery to stand for election and people are not playing the tape backwards. It’s all about how cheap our industry has become. If it were another country they will never surface again but we have many who will listen to him because they are fed chaff.
I have put out the records that I know so I also DARE him and his cohorts like AWUKU HAGAN who are preaching and prophesying on roof tops to put out to the whole world whatever I took from Ghamro during my time as Officer of the court since they have records.
Let them not engage in cheap talk but rather put figures out so I will come and speak to it.
We have entertained this stupid madness and enough on such useless allegations that have no legs from OLD COWARDs that have come into the open because the tigers are resting.
All this while, I have not spoken against him because of the Respect I had for him BUT once you descend into the gutters, we are more than glad to meet with you to clean it up.
Today GHAMRO is in Leadership Crisis because of the worst kind of leadership by my former best friend and wounded fighter Carlos that have fueled other bitter partners of the likes of John Mensah Sarpong and followers HAGAN AWUKU who chose to follow Ghamro without getting another job.
They’ve moved from AMRO to UNICOM Ghamro to Concerned Ghamro members etc. and they’re all over the place.
They’ve adopted all the strategies in the world to fight GHAMRO including Court injunctions, Political Interference, Rumor mongering, defamation and the maligning of persons but as long as the Law stands GHAMRO will continue to Win over all these Cacophony.
Let me end by Greeting Hammer of the last Two just to let him know that I still have in mind the last Convo we had on phone and at the Right time I’ll return the phone call.