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Opinions of Monday, 8 April 2019

Columnist: Daniel Djan

Stop breeding contempt among celebrities in Ghana

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The word celebrity is a controversial word, hence most celebrities are controversial. According to Wikipedia, celebrity is the fame and public attention accorded by the mass media to individuals or groups or occasionally animals especially for successful sports careers, entertainment, and politicians.

It is noted that ancient Greece heroes were considered as celebrities. Ancient Rome like Ghana endorses notorious actors, sports famous guys, and even interviewers as heroes. In the 12th century, Thomas Becket engaged in conflict with Henry II, King of England , over the rights and privileges of the Church and was murdered by followers of the king, who became famous following his murder and he was considered a celebrity.

Today in Ghana, everyone who appears twice or thrice on TV becomes a celebrity. There are no ethics, culture, manners and courtesy among such people. They don’t take precaution when the media is coaching them to cause public disarray. Some are trying using all possible means to be famous. Now, what we see on the national TV and spot interviews by renowned radio, TV and online publishers are disheartening, alarming, foolhardy and unfair. Today, slay queens are considered as celebrities.

Celebrities are going naked, defaming their colleague celebrities, asking the public to disregard them and people see that as a celebrity.

It is very appalling, seeing a renowned presenter showcasing impolite celebrities to insult innocent people on their so-called popular programmes. Sometimes people use their platform to allow sharp mouth celebrities to abuse the quite ones and go to them to answer them, causing nuisance in the nation without remorse.

Just go to the social media, be it Instagram, facebook, WhatsApp, etc and see the nasty videos, insults, comments that serious interviewers have posted on their walls with misleading headlines without fear, shy and regret. The Ghana Media Commission has a role to play to rectify such misconduct. Ghana Journalist Association must try and educate associate members to conform with the rules and regulations in the media.

Ghana is a country of decency, rich culture and religious inclined. Can we allow the so-called celebrities to dissolute our culture, religion, and decency?

The question is, what is your aim as a celebrity? Is it just to be popular, rich, and outspoken? In a study published by Viacom International Media Networks in 2018, while there are celebrities out there using their fame for important issues in life, some celebrities are skipping queues at shopping malls, bumped up to first-class for free and making monies from slandered, naked, controversial and revealing secrets between them and top class people just to have attention. Interestingly, Kim Kardashian, Leonardo DiCaprio among others used their platform for good by opening up discussions that really made a difference in the world, a situation contrary to Ghanaians’. Most bloggers in Ghana use their platforms for issues that divide people.

I recall when I saw Apostle John Prah at Linda Door restaurant in the queue to buy food, we beckoned him to buy his food first but he gently said, ‘Oh I am ok….. thanks”, then I saw him digging his colleague and he concentrated on his conversation with him.

One must know that once you become famous, you are no more an independent person but a public figure and people can comment about your appearance, blogs, intimacy, and your family life. People will be keen to know more about your life even in your early life. It is about time celebrities knew that their postings on the social media are read and viewed by everybody including their family. How will their parents feel when they see their own daughters and sons nudity? It causes glare, sneer, and embarrassment. Let us not imitate blindly. For it is said, we all have names because of etiquette.