History: Photo of John Jerry Rawlings With Comedians Bob Okala And Ajos


One of Ghana’s local comedians Samuel Kwadwo Buabeng aka Bishop Bob Okala met Rawlings and Ajos met Former President Jeremiah John Rawlings

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Okala, a veteran comedian who was a pioneer of the popular Key Soap Concert Party in the 90s. The Ghanaian Concert Party is one of the many art genres that emerged in this century in sub-Saharan Africa that blend or syncretize local and foreign elements.

However, inspite of their acculturated nature, these new arts styles contain distinctive features that express the identities, symbols, aesthetics and underlying value orientations of their African practitioners and audiences.

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The ability of these new art-forms to reflect and express the moods and outlooks of Africans undergoing rapid socio-cultural transformations is helped by their often ephemeral and transient nature.

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Moreover, besides popular performance, painting and literature, these new syncretic and creative art-forms go far beyond what in the West is normally called art.

They embrace coffin designs, house decorations and bar murals, portrait photography, hair barbering advertisements, sign writing, wire toy vehicles, decorated bread labels, lorry slogans, current jokes and expressions, and the catch names for printed clothes and hairstyles.

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Ghanaian concert parties are professional groups of itinerant artists who stage vernacular shows for the rural and urban audiences that combine slapstick musical comedies, folk stories, acrobatics, moral sermons, magical displays and dance-music sessions.

They appeared just after the First World War and since then have acted as a cultural vortex in Ghana, for besides drawing on the indigenous and imported, old and new, they have accreted to themselves local highlife music and dance, sign painting comic literature and the film/video format.

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Furthermore, since the 1960’s the concert party and its associated guitar band has been one of Ghana’s most important influences on and avenues for contemporary popular performers Its influence has even spread to Togo and Nigeria.

The picture Above proves that the late head of state really admired the creative arts and comedians. He was really a gentleman approachable by all.


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