Eric Donaldson, Okyeame Kwame, MzVee perform at the National Theatre on Saturday

"Like I say, I love being around people who can inspire me to do things, although I use my own inspiration at times. But I love when you put out a venture in helping other people," Donaldson added.

Eric Donaldson, a legendary reggae artiste from Jamaica, has arrived in Ghana to perform at the National Theatre on Saturday (23 July) to raise funds for underprivileged Ghanaians.

In an interview with Benjamin Offei-Addo on the Asaase Breakfast Show on Friday (22 July), the 75-year-old artiste said, “Because it is catering for people, the lesser privilege, I think it’s a good venture, I take part …”

Taj Weekes, a singer and songwriter added that the concert is to raise funds for philanthropic works in Ghana.

“We have a concert at the National Theatre and what we have done is the seed that the funds generated from this effort is geared towards building toilets in Chorkor, refurbishing a library in Korle Bu, and a flagship programme is a football scholarship programme.”

“So we’ve already given 76 scholarships in the Caribbean,” he said.

Performing at the concert are Eric Donaldson, MzVeeOkyeame KwameBlakk Rasta, Rock River, DSP Kofi Sarpong, Taj Weekes etc.

“People who have been chosen are people who have bought into the philosophy.”


Hands across Africa

According to Taj Weekes, “Hands across Africa basically extends a brand of our charity; ‘The Orphan Cry Outreach.”

He added: “We are following up on the African Caribbean Summit to bring the continent and the Caribbean together. We were here last year to do a festival and brought 5000 pairs of shoes with us to give to the children in Accra.”

“So when we left we figured the need to come back to continue the work that we are doing in the Caribbean. So basically what we are doing is replicating all that we’ve done in the Caribbean,” he added.

“And what better way to do it, and I mean the name too is symbolic. We are actually stretching hands across the ocean and bringing the continents in Africa together. We partnered up with GTA and the Ministry of Tourism beyond the return and the YOXS investment.”

“So ‘Hand across Africa’ is here, to foster collaboration between local and international artistes to build a bridge of sisterhood and brotherhood for cultural exchange and social outreach, to generate funds to seed programs. So it falls within the mandate of the beyond the return and the year of return.”

Owning the narrative

Weekes added that there would be an exposé at the concert “It’s a festival and exposé, the exposé is everything made in Ghana. There’s nothing external, food, clothing, music, everything is made in Ghana.”

“Because what we want to do is to highlight Ghana. One of the ideas we had is that whenever stories are told about the motherland, they are not told by African people. So we want to actually dictate our own narrative, this time around.”

“So the physical exposé reflects only things made in Ghana. So in between artiste performances, you get to see Ghana told through Ghanaian voices. You get to see Ghana in its beauty. Not the vision that the world gives with that one child with that fly that never goes away.”

“We are telling Ghana’s narrative and when we get to the other country we would tell their narrative by the people who live there.”

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