Where is our money?—K’si musician asks MUSIGA

By: Delali Sika
Nana Yaw Tabiri on MUSIGA
Highlife musician, Nana Yaw Tabiri

KUMASI-based Highlife artiste, Nana Yaw Tabiri, has expressed disappointment in the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA), for its failure to get the Kumasi Chapter an office for its operations three years after promising to do so.

Nana Yaw Tabiri is also demanding that the Obour-led Union account for monies realised from a fund-raising event, Asanteman Arts Ball and Awards for the purpose of securing the Kumasi chapter an office.

In a phone interview with Showbiz on Tuesday, Nana Yaw Tabiri said about three years ago, MUSIGA organised a fund raising event dubbed Asanteman Arts Ball and Awards in Kumasi.

Obour promised that funds from the event would be used to get them an office to since the Union had been evicted from Kumasi Cultural Centre where they were operating from.

But they have not heard anything from him since then while the Union has also not accounted for the money realised from the event.

“When you come to Kumasi, there is no place for us to operate, MUSIGA used to occupy a place at the Kumasi Cultural Centre but we have been kicked out because we could not pay for the place.

“As I am talking to you, we are seated under trees here. No one has communicated anything to we the members and it is quiet worrying,” he said.

He said they want explanations from their president, Obour. “I remember that very day, tables went for GH¢500 each or so at the event.

"Where did all the money go? We want to hear from him; what is going on? When are we getting what is due us? What does he have to say to this?

When asked if he had directed his grievances to the Kumasi MUSIGA executives, he answered in the negative saying “I have not spoken to any of them because I know my people, it will not yield any results.”

When Showbiz contacted Obour, president of MUSIGA on the matter, he admitted that indeed such a promise had been made but their inability to make it happen couldn’t be his fault.

“Yes, it was part of our plans to get them a place to operate from but the truth is that, people made pledges at the event and till now, the pledges have not been redeemed.

"It was even our plan to organise such balls every year but we cannot do so because there is no money,” he disclosed.

Obour added that they were also trying to notify those who made pledges to see if they could fulfill them.

However Nana Tabiri countered Obour’s claims saying “I know for sure that some of the monies have been paid. As I am talking to you, we are working on summoning Obour to the Asantehene’s palace so he can answer questions.”

This is not the first time the Obour-led MUSIGA is facing criticism from its members.

Last year, some stakeholders accused the executives of misappropriation of funds after Obour said he had used about GH¢800,000 of a GH¢2m government allocation to the creative arts on research.

According to him, the research was aimed at providing baseline data on the music industry, explaining the structure and function of Ghana’s music industry and making recommendations to stakeholders and government on the way forward.