Deputy Minister for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Dr Ziblim Barri Iddi says the New Patriotic Party did not promise to build theatres in all the ten regions of the country during the 2016 general election campaign.
Speaking to some media houses at the 2018 edition of the African Magic Viewer’s Choice Awards in Lagos-Nigeria, the Minister explained that what was written in the manifesto meant renovation of Art Centres for entertainment purposes but people misconstrued it to mean building new theatres.
The 2016 Manifesto of the ruling New Patriotic Party government led by President Nana Addo Dankwah Akuffo-Addo states in Chapter 17 page 172 paragraph 5 said “We will pursue the construction of modern large seating theatres in every regional capital except Accra, beginning with Takoradi, Tamale and Kumasi, as well as setting up an additional Copyright Office in Tamale to cater for the northern sector in addition to the existing ones in Accra and Kumasi.”
But, according to the Deputy Minister, their manifesto talks about theatres but as to the nature of it, is what confuses people.
“When we say regional theatres, people were thinking National theatre. In Accra we have the national theatre, Center for Arts and the NCC, so people confused what we said by thinking we will be replicating the same thing like national theatre,” he explained.
He explained that all they meant was to create opportunities in all the regions for theatre performances.
When further interrogated, Dr Ziblim said because the country already had regional centres for culture and entertainment, most of which are not in good shape, the government intends to give those structures a facelift, upgrade them to modern standards and build new ones in regions that do not have those facilities.
“In all, it doesn’t make sense to go to a region where they have a regional theater or art center and rebuild a theater for them, so the manifesto was clear that there will be theaters but the definition is where the confusion is”.