When Philip Osei Bonsu had discussions with the Multimedia Group about hosting shows on any of their many platforms some time ago, Ekosii Sen, was not one of the programmes he envisaged hosting.
Yet today, he is the host of arguably the most popular and listened to late afternoon political show in the country and he intends to ensure it stays that way.
“While I was working as the Public Relations Officer of the Electricity Company of Ghana in the Western Region, Multimedia called me about the possibility of coming on air to host some shows, which did not include Ekosii Sen.
At the time, KABA was still hosting Ekosii Sen. Unfortunately, he passed on and now here we are,” Philip told Showbiz on Tuesday.
Without a doubt, KABA (Kwadwo Asare Baffour-Acheampong’s) death on November 18, 2017 was one that shook the entire nation and the Multimedia Group definitely felt the loss more.
In the years he hosted the show, KABA stamped his authority on the show and was able to moderate the programme so objectively that he was beloved by both sides of the political divide.
So great was his influence on the show that many wondered how Multimedia was going to fill the vacuum and who would be given that somewhat daunting task.
Since his death, Akua Boakyewaa had been sitting in as the company strategised on what to do.
Now Philip is in the hot seat and he says he relishes the opportunity he has been given.
“It feels very fulfilling to be hosting this show, I think I’ve worked hard for this and I am very grateful to everyone especially Multimedia for the opportunity to serve the brand and Ghana,” he said.
Getting a practicing Public Relations person to leave his role with an organisation like the Electricity Company of Ghana must not have come cheap and although he won’t give figures, Philip tells Showbiz the deal was very lucrative.
His name may be new to the Accra audience but Philip Osei Bonsu is not new to radio at all and brings experience to his current role.
Much of his radio career has been in the Western Region where he has done different things in the industry.
He hosted the weekend news analysis programme, News Review on one of Takoradi’s big stations, Skyy Power FM, on a part-time basis.
He also hosted the station’s morning show, Jolly Breakfast show while also taking up managerial roles as Brands Manager and Corporate Communications Manager.
If there is one thing Philip is keen on doing, it is making sure he is himself on Ekosii Sen while bearing in mind KABA’s legacy.
“The show is already established so success of the show is actually good for me.
There is no need to reinvent the wheel, all I have to do is add some spice to it and impose my own identity on the show.
The format basically remain the same although there will be a few tweaks in line with establishing my identity.
In his own words, the biggest thing he brings to the game is his great interviewing skills.
“I like to push my interviewees to bring out the best. I won’t allow you to get off easily, I will push you to give me and my audience what you have to.”
Considering how things can get heated on Ekosii Sen and with its presenters having been branded as belonging to one party or the other, Philip says he hopes to stay as neutral as possible and in that sense he looks to KABA.
“Definitely, what guided KABA will guide me.
I know that I can’t please everybody but I will be very fair and be true to my country and my consicence. In my life and career, I have always been guided by the National Pledge and I always try to defend the good name of Ghana and the cause to the country so I am sure I can remain neutral and impartial,” Philip said.
He started hosting the show on Monday, February 5, and tells Showbiz, the feedback he has gotten has been encouraging.
“I had calls from all over the world after my first day and the biggest feedback I got was that I spoke a bit more English than I should have.
That is something I am working on with the production team and I know with time, I will find the right balance.”
Accra radio is a brutal only-the-strong survive world and especially with Multimedia which thrives on results and Philip is all too aware of that and he said he is in for the long haul.
“I am ready to do whatever it takes for things to work and I am very determined,” he said.
One person who probably can tell whether Philip is the right fit for Ekosii Sen is long time producer, Dominic Kissi-Yeboah who worked with Nana Bobie Ansah and KABA.
This is what he had to say to Showbiz about his new host, happy to be working with him. I see traits of KABA in him.
“I’ve worked with a lot of presenters and the best ones are those who invest heavily in research.
KABA was one of them and Philip has those same qualities. I think my programmes manager did a good job and I am very happy, he will succeed.”
Philip Osei Bonsu describes himself as a Product of Grace. He is a Tullow Scholar and holds an MSc in Corporate Communication and Public Affairs from the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen.
He is also a 2017 Mandela Washington Fellow placed in the Business & Entrepreneurship Track at the University of San Diego, California where he obtained a certificate in Leadership and Social Entrepreneurship.
He runs OBPR Consult, a PR firm that specialises in media communications, Public Relations and Public Affairs.
He is married to Linda Ayisi-Addo, a Nursing Officer and they have a son, Nana Kwaku Osei Bonsu.