Celebrities Endorsing Political Parties – What’s The Way Forward?

I’m not too sure about what the wife of former Ghana Black Stars’ captain, Tony Baffour and Ghanaian actress Kalsum Sinare Baffour was thinking when she recently graced the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Special Delegates Congress in Kumasi.

But what I’m exactly sure about is the fact that, she should have had a second thought in relation to her display of political affiliation.

Really – what is wrong with an actress supporting a political party? Kalsum is not the first movie personality offering her support to a political party and she will not be the last person either. NPP had lots of followers in the entertainment industry same as CPP who even had an actress recently vying for one of the Parliamentary seats.

All the entertainers offering or endorsing a particular party have people who follow everything they are involved in – you can call those people fans. The fans do not necessarily support or have to support the party that, their favourite celebrity support.

I know it’s a bit difficult if your favourite entertainer is on party A’s platform and endorsing them whiles you prefer party B. It is not a good feeling.

I have been a strong advocator for political tolerance and a call to end the discrimination against people who do not belong to the political party that we go with in my own small way.

In Ghana, we claim to have a growing democracy, yet we find it difficult to accept someone else’s party affiliation without subjecting them to name calling, needless insults and discrimination.

It would be absurd for anyone to publicly state their political affiliation because of what is expected after such a disclosure. Kalsum was perhaps born in to the party like the other actresses who may have a soft spot for the other political parties but then, I admire her boldness in coming out strongly.

Most people will be smiling with her but deep in their heads; they are subjecting her to different kind of insults for merely declaring her love and support for a political party different from theirs. The question is; must all Ghanaians join the same party?

Should movie producers who believe in other political parties deliberately ignore or sideline her because of her political affiliation and not think of what she will add to the movie?

The Nigerian Movie Industry popularly called Nollywood is huge enough to accommodate all actors and actresses. So when a particular producer or production house sideline or decide not to use a particular actor, the said actor can rely on the next available production house.

In 2011 in the history of Nigeria’s elections, lots of celebrities, both musicians and movie stars publicly declared their support for their current President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.

Clearly most of them had done that because of the financial benefits. However, some genuinely believe in the man and his party hence the support and endorsements.

Like I stated earlier on, the Ghana industry is not as big as their Nigerian counterparts, that’s why it won’t be a problem when movie stars endorse a party in Nigeria but suicidal when the opposite happens in Ghana.

We must learn to recognise entertainers with their talents and not their political colours. After all a well nurtured talent stays on forever whiles elections are seasonal. Let’s get out this ‘pull him down’ syndrome because he doesn’t support our party. It’s sickening.

I might not be NDC or not interested in politics but Kalsum has every right to join and associate herself with any political party of her choice. I will be happy to see more endorsements of political parties by celebrities as the general elections get to its zenith.

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