EPISODE 6- May 10th , 2013

My name is Chief Moomen and I am the co-producer of TGIF now responsible for updating the blog of the show.  I am taking over from our amazing intern, Caroline, whose duty it has been over the past weeks to keep you updated. She has completed her internship with us as well as her study abroad programme at the Accra campus of New York University and is now returning to the United States.

Hey Caroline, the entire Sapphire Ghana team is very pleased to have had you with us.  We applaud your hard work and commitment and we are delighted that you blended perfectly in the creative, sometimes chaotic and mostly exciting bubble of the Sapphire family. We hope you found your stay with us fulfilling and we wish you the very best in your subsequent endeavors.

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Ok! So before I start blogging proper about TGIF, let me get some few things out of the way. First of all, I am not really a blogging kind of person. I mean, I find the process of maintaining a blog quite laborious.  The thing is, I am yet to immerse myself in all this social media hype. I am not very active on facebook and I am unremarkably dormant on twitter (I have like 5 tweets after about two years of joining twitter)

Secondly, let it be known that I am a poet! As such, I can hardly suppress my poetic impulse even when expressing myself in prose. You see, I have a flare for the dramatic and language for me is bland and lame and uninspiring without a spice of bombast and different flavors of expressions. So much as I find maintaining a blog laborious; I do fervently hope you don’t find reading my blog equally laborious. (if you do, no stress! our new intern is coming soon:)

Ok, now to the updates!

Last Fridays’ edition of TGIF was great and exciting with many interesting guests and next week’s show promises to be even greater and more exciting with many more exciting guests. So don’t miss it!

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“Like seriously? You spent the whole time writing about yourself in the blog and could only manage two lines about TGIF….”

So it seems my colleague in the office didn’t find my report of the show comprehensive enough, so I have come back to redeem myself.

Friday 10th May’s edition of the show featured a strong line-up of guests from the academia, the business world, the public service and the entertainment industry. The show opened with quintessential KSM at his satirical best.  He lampooned the on-going supreme court hearings by re-counting his experiences with some of the personalities involved in the case.  He claimed that he was at Bawumia’s house when he (Bawumia) returned home after a grueling day in court. When his wife called him, he turned and responded “Yes my lord”. KSM also recounted how, in a queue to buy waakye, he overhead a man “suggesting to” the seller that the quantity of rice he received did not match the amount of money he paid. The woman claimed it couldn’t be so because she had fetched the rice with a pink ladle.

The first guest on the show was the celebrated Ghanaian author, playwright and scholar, Professor Ama Atta Aidoo. Prof Aidoo, who is also the Executive Director of the Mbaasem Foundation, talked about an impending workshop for writers and aspiring writers alike. The workshop is being organized by her Mbaasem NGO on the 16th to the 19th of April in Accra at the College of Physicians and Surgeons. KSM inquired from Prof Aidoo on how to write. According to her, it was imperative for one to develop the discipline to write which involved actually making time to write and insulating one’s self from unnecessary distractions when doing so.  KSM informed viewers that Prof Aidoo’s main focus for the interview was to discuss the workshop. She promised to come back for a more in-depth personality interview.

Are you are writer or have you been attempting to write? Can you share with us some of your experiences in the process of writing?

The second guest on the show was the erstwhile director of the National Service Secretariat, Mr. Vincent Senanu Kuagbenu whose procession on leave generated a lot of public interest in Ghana. When KSM referred to him as the former Executive Director of the NSS, he was quick to point out that he was still the substantive director of the NSS and that he was only on leave. This was quite interesting because, I have generally observed that in Ghana, being asked to proceed on leave is a nice way of relieving you of your post.  KSM and Mr. Kuagbenu went on to discuss the agricultural project Mr. Kuagbenu had instituted for the scheme. According to him, when he first mooted the idea to send graduates to farms, he was widely vilified for that initiative. But he was now happy that the project was yielding dividends for the country. KSM asked why people considered him to be controversial and he responded that, perhaps, it was because he insisted on principles. He tried to clean the secretariat when he got there by making it difficult for people to abuse the system.  According to Mr. Kuagbenu, the NSS is a “terrible place to work.” And that during the period of service postings, his phones are always off because of the pressure to post people to their places of their choosing. Do you think that Mr. Kuagbenu suffered the penalty as a result of his insistence of principles?

Karlos is the Business Development Manager of Coral Paint who featured on TGIF last Friday. On the show, he talked about a new type of paint coral is introducing into the market which has some kind of insecticide quality. He said that once you paint your wall with this particular kind of paint, any insect which landed on it will meet its death. He was very excited about the product and was positive that Ghanaians will embrace it. KSM wanted to get up-close and personal with Karlos so he inquired about his experience in Ghana. It was quite interesting to see how the Brazilian had so acclimatized to Ghanaian culture. He came for the interview wearing a Batakari and said that whenever people saw him in it, they said “eye fe paa.” According to Carlos, there are a lot of similarities between Ghana and Brazil so he feels totally at home in Ghana. He noted that Brazil had its own kind of ‘gari’ made from cassava and that his favourite Ghanaian meal was ‘waakye.’  He also pointed out that he enjoys Ghanaian music a lot and had even made the conscious effort to learn some Ghanaian songs. KSM invited Carlos to do a performance for viewers and he readily agreed.  Playing a guitar, he sang a rendition of one of Kwabena Kwabena’s songs and a medley of gospel songs which got everybody clapping heartily.

The last guest on the show was the creative and dynamic Ghanaian musician, Okyeame Kwame. The artist who made it on ETV’s list of 100 most influential people in Ghana was bubbly and brimming with excitement throughout the show. He received five nominations at this year’s Ghana Music Awards and he was quite confident that he was going bag at least three of the awards.  He talked about the numerous projects he was engaged in apart from music.  Okyeame noted that the creative process in music could be applied to other fields of life so he saw no reason why he had to limit himself to music alone. So he had branched into advertising, branding, activations and event management. He mentioned that he and his wife managed two companies; he was the boss of one, and she the boss of the other. KSM was quite impressed with the dynamism of Okyeame Kwame and commended him for his foresight as well as for his “Versatile” show last year which was adjudged; the best music concert of the year. KSM asked Okyeame about a newspaper article which claimed his wife said he was not romantic. Okyeame explained that the newspaper had come to interview his wife and she said so many great things about him. But when she was asked about some of his negatives, she mentioned in passing he was not romantic because he could not cook. Okyeame however joked that if a man works and takes care of his family, then he is romantic. What do you think? What makes a man romantic?

Episode 5: May 3, 2013

This week’s inspiring episode was all about self-empowerment and advocating for under-served populations! KSM started the show by talking with two representatives from the University of Ghana at Legon: Edward Kombat, the president of the Students Representative Council (SRC), and Benedictus Ntow, the head of the Edu Aid club. Both of these impressive young gentlemen have inspired massive numbers of Legon students to support each other and the community! In order to help students who can’t pay their school fees, Edward Kombat and the SRC have created a fund that uses small donations from other students to create scholarships. In another powerful example of students helping students, Benedictus Ntow and the Ed Aid club at Legon are inspiring students to spend time and money on volunteering in local primary schools! KSM was very impressed by the money and support that Edward and Benedictus have been able to gather! These gentlemen are great examples of youth taking initiative, he said. They have stopped blaming the government and are stepping out on their own to make change! What do you think of Edward and Benedictus’s efforts? Do students have the power to speak up and change things in Ghana? What role does education play in the development of the country as a whole? Post your thoughts here or on our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/TGIFSHOWNOW)! 

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KSM’s second guest of the night has appeared on TGIF multiple times before and even refers to KSM as his “father.” That’s right….Funny Face made an appearance on Friday!!! Funny Face was full of admiration for the “swag” of  TGIF’s new studio, and he didn’t look too bad himself! KSM talked and joked with his “son” using the special humor that they share. He asked Funny Face about the Range Rover which he just received from Togolese footballer Emmanuel Adebayor, showed an exclusive clip from the comedian’s new music video, “Double Double,” and tried to persuade him to reveal who the special lady in his life is. Funny Face didn’t reveal any more than he wanted to! At the end of the interview, he turned to the camera and told the Ghanaian people that wherever you end up in life, it is important to be humble. Do you agree? Should people be humble all the time, or are there some times when you have to stand up for yourself and be confident? Let us know what you think!

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Our final guest of the night was the epitome of confidence! She believes in the power of presenting yourself well and doing a good job. In fact, Ellen Hagan has managed to GET good jobs for many Ghanaians over the course of her career. She specializes in human resources and is the CEO and founder of L’aine Services, a one-of-a-kind business which performs a variety of career-enhancing services for Ghanaians. Ellen recently won the CIMG Marketing Woman of the Year Award, and she has been praised in many other places for her pioneering work. One of the most impressive things about L’aine’s CEO is the way she balances personal and professional life. Ellen has a devoted husband and four children, but she still manages to run one of Ghana’s most successful companies! In her eyes, women should not be told that they can’t have it all. “We need to do something,” she said, “so that women can have the opportunity to decide when they want to go to school, when they want to have children, when they want to make love to their husbands…” Do you think that women can have it all? What would it take in Ghana to create a society where women are treated as men are in the workplace? 

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Episode 4: April 26, 2013

This week’s episode was an inspiring combination of thoughtful discussion and heartfelt reflection that made everyone at Sapphire Ghana Limited crack a smile. KSM started the show with a discussion about the budding entertainment scene in Kumasi. He hosted Benson Ohene Boateng and Kwabena Kuffour, who painted an exciting picture of what the city holds. Are you a TGIF fan living in Kumasi? Tell us what we need to look out for! Who are the hot new entertainers coming out of your city? How do you see the scene changing?

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Mr. Boateng represented Kumasi with slick style on set. He expressed his excitement about KSM’s upcoming show, “The Secrets of GH Girls,” which will be performed on May 1st!! If you will be in Kumasi for the holiday, you can’t afford to miss this new and improved version of the show which rocked the National Theatre on Christmas and Valentine’s Day. Stay tuned to KSM’s Twitter page (@KSM_Kwaku_Misa) for more information!

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KSM’s second guest of the night was Patrick William Doodo, a charming artist who is known for his speed (his fastest work was completed in 45 seconds!) and the fact that he paints many of his creations upside down at first! Patrick is responsible for most of TGIF’s sophisticated new set and a beautiful mural that is being painted in the Sapphire Ghana office. Make sure to check our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/TGIFSHOWNOW) for gorgeous pictures of his work!

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Another artist who we had the pleasure of hosting on Friday was Jeff Spain, a gospel singer who got his big break on BET’s “Sunday Best” and now owns his own show on the network. Jeff’s parents are Ghanaian, but he has lived in the United States for his whole life and considers both places home. After a brief but successful career as an R&B singer, Jeff found himself questioning his choice of genre. One of his friends, a pastor, asked him if he would feel comfortable singing his music at the gates of heaven in front of Jesus. When Jeff realized that the answer was no, he decided to sing only gospel music and has never looked back. What do you think of his choice? Do you think that R&B music can be confidently sung by people who claim to be Christians? Post your opinions here or on our Facebook page.

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KSM wrapped up the show last week with an intimate conversation with Archbishop C.G. Palmer-Buckle, the head of the Ghanaian catholic church. Archbishop Palmer-Buckle shared the story of his journey to choosing priesthood as a career. He mentioned that many young people do not complete the process  he completed because the work of God requires a lot of sacrifice. KSM then asked: what happens when a priest can no longer sacrifice and gives into temptation? In his characteristically peaceful way, the Archbishop answered that everyone deserves a second chance. The disciples of Jesus were not perfect, and neither is any pastor or religious representative. Do you agree? Should priests who are caught in sexual affairs or pedophilia be given a chance to take up their robes again? Let us know what you think!

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The archbishop also thrilled us with his rendition of Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song!” The performance was, to our knowledge, the first time any archbishop in the whole world has ever sung Bob Marley on broadcast television! Behind the camera, the whole crew joined Archbishop Palmer-Buckle as he lifted us up in the inspiring song. We felt truly blessed to have hosted such a powerful and encouraging guest.

Episode 3: April 19, 2013 Part 2

Last Friday’s episode included much more than an interview with the president! KSM also featured another powerful guest: the founder of Koko King, Albert Osei. Mr. Osei built his successful business from the bottom up! He has been expanding his Koko King enterprise since 2008, and-as we are sure you can see from the popularity of his product-his efforts have been working! One of the things Mr. Osei prides himself on is the hygienic packaging of his porridge products. With Koko King meals, you don’t have to worry about contaminants that might find their way into food that has been cooked and served on the street. Do you think that packaging meals such as koko for regular consumption is a good thing for the Ghanaian market, or do you think that the selling of street food should be left to the people who have been doing it for years?

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Friday’s episode also contained an intense discussion about one of this week’s hottest topics: the electoral committee’s Supreme Court case! KSM bantered with Abdul “Chief” Moomen and Eugene Selorm Boadu about whether or not the case should be televised. Do you think Ghanaians should be able to witness the proceedings, or do you think it is best not to resurrect tensions within and between parties that caused discomfort during the election season? Post your thoughts here or on our Facebook page!

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Don’t forget to tune in this Friday at 9:30 pm on Metro TV for more heated discussions and fascinating guests! Have a great week!

Episode 3: April 19, 2013 Part 1

The most exciting part of TGIF this week was KSM’s interview with President John Mahama, which was filmed in the presidential office of Flagstaff House! KSM and His Excellency discussed a wide variety of topics which ranged from the “dumso” power and water outages which have been wreaking havoc in the capital to the appointment of ministerial officials to the re-evaluation of Single Spine. The president told TGIF about his plan to reform the energy sector in Ghana through foreign direct investment; do you think that particular approach will work? Is there hope for receiving regular electricity and water services again? 

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One of the questions that is on everyone’s mind these days is: will the election results be overturned? The NPP sure thinks so, but President Mahama disagreed on Friday. He said that he has complete confidence that justice is on his side. Do you think the evidence that the NPP brings to the courtroom will convince the judges? Will the President be allowed to keep his office? 

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At the end of his interview, President Mahama reflected that the presidency is a journey; though a lot has happened in the first 100 days, there is a lot more to be done. In your opinion, how did His Excellency do during these first three months? Did he prove what he should have proven? Did he make enough progress to be considered a good investment for this country? We want to hear your thoughts! Post here or on our Facebook page to join the conversation. 

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This Friday!

This Friday, TGIF will be broadcast to you directly from Flagstaff House! That’s right! One of our featured guests will be His Excellency President John Mahama! Tomorrow, President Mahama will celebrate his 100th day in office. What a crazy 100 days it has been! Strikes, water and power shortages, controversies surrounding ministerial officials…Hear all about it when KSM does an in-depth interview with the President on Friday! TGIF won’t skimp on any of the tough questions; you will hear everything you need to know about what is going on in the government right now.

You know where to find the show! 9:30 pm on Metro TV and 1:00 pm on Sunday.

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TGIF will come to you from the presidential office at Flagstaff House this Friday! You can’t afford to miss the interview!

Episode 2: April 12, 2013

Tonight’s episode was on FIRE! KSM’s first guest, Nathaniel Padi, was a 14-year old computer whiz who has been developing software for two years! He recently designed an app called Spacecraft which allows users to schedule their time wisely. In the future, Nathaniel would like to design an app which will allow Ghanaians to locate the nearest vendor of Burkina, a popular drink made of cow’s milk and millet! If you could design an app, what would it be? Post your answers here or on our Facebook page!

Veronica Commey, a sports journalist for the Ghana News Agency, also made an appearance on the show tonight. She shared her passion for sports with the TGIF team. Veronica has a fascinating and inspiring life story! After attending primary and secondary schools which did not adequately prepare her for higher learning, she successfully broke into a profession that is usually dominated by men. Veronica admitted to having to sacrifice a lot to achieve her dreams, but she and KSM agreed that Ghana needs more female representation on the field and on the web when it comes to sports journalism. What do you think? Does the sports industry need an equal balance of voices from men and women?

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Here is Veronica Commey with Sapphire’s own Chief Moomen. Tonight, on his new segment, “Your Moment with Moomen,” the Chief presented a hilarious letter from a fan. The letter talked about the strikes which have been stirring things up in Ghana for the last few weeks. It seems, said the anxious letter-writer, that the only people who have not been on strike have been the politicians. Chief Moomen thought that proposed an interesting question: what would happen if Ghanaian politicians went on strike? Tell us your thoughts!

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KSM’s last featured guests of the night, who are pictured above, were Fredrick and James Ansah, two gentlemen from Koforidua who have managed to build a working car completely out of scrap metal! Even the engine of the vehicle is constructed from random materials! What makes the story even more amazing, though, is that neither Fredrick nor James has a driver’s license. Whenever they are pulled over by the police in their homemade car (which is unregistered), officers usually laugh and let them pass on their way!

Both the Ansah brothers and Veronica Commey originally contacted TGIF through Twitter. The power of social media websites like Twitter and Facebook is enormous, so send a message to one of our online pages and you could be the next guest on Thank God It’s Friday!
Here is a link to our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TGIFSHOWNOW
And here is a link to KSM’s Twitter page: https://twitter.com/KSM_Kwaku_Misa

Tonight’s episode ended with a hot debate that you don’t want to miss. Tune in on Sunday afternoon at 1pm or check out the conversations on Facebook and this page to join the discussion: should college graduates who are conducting their National Service be made to direct traffic? What do you think?

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Here are Selorm Kwaku Boadi (a National Service Person) and Kafui Dey (the host of “Who Wants to be Rich?”) in a heated discussion about the question of traffic directing for National Service.