Posted on October 17, 2013


Komla Dumor, a Ghanaian BBC Presenter, of Focus on Africa

Komla Dumor, a Ghanaian BBC Presenter, of Focus on Africa

Believe it or not I started this post yesterday and look what appeared yesterday on the BBC site, Kumla Dumor’s LETTER FROM AFRICA entitled Red Tape and Visas!

Lot’s of significant quotes..but let me get to those later

Here’s what I wrote yesterday:
Let’s see who have highlighted on the SCRAP SHORT TERM TOURIST VISAS TO GHANAFacebook Group page. There’s been Dambisa Moyo, Kofi Annan, Honorable Hanna Tetteh, Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Honorable Elizabeth Ofosu-Agyare, Ghana’s Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative arts, Bono…I think I’ve remembered them all. Have I missed any?

Well, next up Komla Dumor, the Ghanaian prime presenter of BBC’s Focus on Africa…here’s how he was chosen (remember this part was written before the publication of the above article!)

First, Festus Tumi, my co-administrator of the Scrao FB page, posted this after the recent tragic migrants deaths following the sinking of boats in the Mediterranean Sea:

Festus Tumi
“300 drown off Lampedusa coast” was last weeks news. “200 feared drowned of Lampedusa” is today’s news. Every day it’s a new name but the story’s the same. These migrants are some of the bravest people on earth, and their potential is now forever lost. Why can’t African governments see what a lack of hope within their own borders causes people to do?

UNWTO, ILO and others have repeated ad nausem that tourism can be a major earner and catalyst for national development. Here on Scrap, several attempts have been made by Mr Scott to engage the relevant departments to engage in dialogue to try out an idea that would boost tourism and its associated revenues in Ghana. Stonewalled silence is the reply. And all the while we are told Lampedusa doesn’t matter to us, because no Ghanaians were involved. Rant over….”

Following Festus’ post I posted “my rant” Why Nations Fail which appears here on the madinghana.wordpress blog

Then Komla Dumor posted on his Facebook page:

Komla Dumor: How do you prevent more tragedies like Lampedusa? At least 250 have drowned, many more still missing. Every year African migrants die trying to reach Europe.

And here’s my comment following the above:

“Focus on tourism to create jobs. Ghana Tourism is the number three employer, but not a mention of tourism in the upcoming THE GHANA SUMMIT you are attending. Hope to see you on SCRAP SHORT TERM TOURIST VISAS TO GHANA FB GROUP PAGE, a grassroots social media campaign seeking change to Ghana’s strict high hassle regulations.”

And you’ve seen Komla’s picture in the provious post ECONOMIST’S GHANA SUMMIT: TOURISM TABOO. He’s a moderator at this event. I’m happy he got the gig. He’s not one of those lords of poverty. I just wish he was at the summit with top billing…

Whatever, he’ll be there and I’m sure he’ll be moving the agenda towards roadblocks that inhibit the progress of his native continent…and his letter, by all means, the timing of this letter is significant! perhaps he’s caught the drift that there is a big ommission from the agenda….NOT PERHAPS, HE HAS! and who knows the SCRAP SHORT TERM TOURIST VISAS TO GHANA will finally have its CHAMPION!

and in this corner, little, neglected, ignored, insignificant SCRAP SHORT TERM TOURIST VISAS TO GHANA grassroots Facebook group campaign -kinda reminds me of Malcolm Gladwell’s new book David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling. Here’s another BBC item this time on Gladwell’s book. Defines us to a T!

Who do you think is in the other corner?

But I get sidetracked….getting to Dumlor’s letter..his focus is on Africans travelling within Africa…and oh the bureaucracy…how it undermines business-his opening scenario with the meat exporter is tells the story…well, not quite…what about the affect all the hassle in acquiring a tourist visa to take a holiday in Africa’s so-called success story GHANA has on TOURISM, the #3 employer and foreign exchange in Ghana!

Interesting that he should refer to the talkfest in Morocco…”wonderfully engaging, with a lot of frank talk” Probably, THE GHANA SUMMIT will be described as such…and here’s my significant quote: “One issue which was not the headline topic of any panel discussion but was talked about nevertheless was travelling in Africa.” HOW HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF! WELL THIS TIME OUR SCRAP CHAMPION MODERATOR KUMLOR WILL BRING IT TO THE REAL TABLE! VISAS PROCUREMENT IS A TOPIC NOT FOR THE CORRIDORS AND THE COFFEE BREAKS.

Here in Ghana, visa procurement hurts the tourism industry while reflecting negatively on our GATEWAY TO WEST AFRICA image, and the people of Ghana!