I signed up to work for Girl Talk once again this year, by helping to push the brand and the concert. Of course, I did so because I was paid some good money but more also because I believe in the Girl Talk brand and have a great working relationship with the brain behind it, Kiki Banson.
Earlier this month in Accra, I spent one late night at Smoke’n Barrel near Cantonments with Kiki Banson and two others, and we delved into different conversations including my unfettered critique of Yvonne Nelson, over bottles of beer.
How Kiki Banson is a friend remains a conundrum: because we hardly agree on any issue—and it’s not just him, I clash with a lot of friends on various topics. Perhaps, the intelligent disagreements, though sometimes awkward is the bond that holds many of my relationships and friendships together.
Despite a usual beautiful night out and discussions about Girl Talk and Yvonne Nelson, it did not cross my mind that, the actress who recently gave birth with a man alleged to be someone’s husband was going to be honoured on the night—and be called a role model in front of thousands of young Ghanaian women.
I was not at 2017 Girl Talk concert which took place last night at the National Theatre but almost everyone I’ve spoken to, including the 10 people I gave free tickets to attend say it was thrilling.
However, a particular moment has been repeatedly described as embarrassing, unnecessary and completely out of order—and this is the Yvonne Nelson on stage moment.
Let me capture the account for those who were not there, exactly as I’ve been told.
Yvonne Nelson was called on stage and she was honoured—about 12 people I’ve spoken to say they are still not sure exactly what the honour was for. But that’s not my problem as Girl Talk can subjectively decide to grant its stage and award to anyone it finds fit.
The problem, as almost everyone has said, lies with NDC’s former Deputy Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Madam Dzifa Gomashie “reciting” chains of epithets to Yvonne Nelson and categorically making the point that she is a ROLE MODEL.
It wasn’t just her—I am told a legion of female industry folks including Sandra Ankobiah, Lydia Forson, Roselyn Ngissah mounted the stage to hold hands in “solidarity” with Yvonne Nelson in what can best be described as complete bollocks.
“Solidary” and “Role Model” for what, I asked 5 concertgoers and one managed to state that; Yvonne Nelson was said to have had a difficult time, obviously in the hands of the media and critics, after having a baby out of wedlock with someone’s alleged husband.
The Yvonne Nelson moment has been described by a good friend who attended the event as, “shocking and confusing” and a former writer at GhanaCelebrities.Com had this to say; “my friend who went to the concert with me said she better find someone’s husband to impregnate her so she would be called on stage next year too.”
Yvonne Nelson may deserve a lot of awards as an actress and a producer which every reasonable person, including her staunch critics, wouldn’t totally dispute, but I believe the lamest of her fans would even agree that “sliding into a man’s inbox” on Instagram and later getting pregnant by him out of wedlock should not in any way attract any form of solidarity and role model talks in Ghana.
It’s our hypocrisy, blind solidarity and unending honouring of those who do not deserve it that the state of our country today clearly reflects.