Ghanaian comedian Clement Ashitey known in the showbiz industry as Clemento Suarez has appealed to President Akufo-Addo to fulfil the NPP’s manifesto promise to put up regional theatres in the country.
The comedian reiterated the concerns that the absence of theatres in the regions, especially when it comes securing venues to premiere movies and for stage productions, is one of the problems hindering the growth of the sector.
Over the years, there have been talks of how the lack of theatres in the regions is affecting the creative industry, and Clemento Suarez sounded the clarion call when he spoke with Graphic Showbiz.
According to him, it came as a big relief when the ruling NPP stated in their 2016 manifesto that they will build regional theatres but to date not much has been done.
In both the 2016 and 2020 manifestos of the NPP, the President promised to put up regional theatres but to date no show, Mr President we are waiting,’’ he said.
Checks by Graphic Showbiz revealed that the Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mark Okraku Mantey, stated in November 2021 that the Eastern Regional Theatre had been completed and it was expected that the Ashanti Regional Theatre will also be completed by the end of 2022.
Away from that, Clemento Suarez gave his views on how comedy was generally doing in the country noting that “from 2019 to date, we have moved 30 per cent higher, we are still climbing.”
He explained that the support from the general public will ensure the growth of comedy in the country.
Talking about work, Clemento Suarez said one of his greatest achievements was when he won the Emy Awards Entertainment Man of the Year in 2020. “I was in the same category with Sarkodie and Stonebwoy so for me to come up tops, I was very happy.”
‘‘Aside from awards, my biggest achievement is my ability to pave way for my juniors to make a living out of stage acting and comedy. To see people happy makes me happy, not just make them laugh but get fulfilment from it,” he said.
Touching on his philosophy towards his work as a comedian, Clemento Suarez said he considered the impact of what he did would have on people.
‘‘I ask myself what message am I putting across, the impact on the people and I also look at how realistic it can be to real life situations. Once I am convinced, I just go ahead and deliver,’’ he said.
Fortunately, for Clemento Suarez, none of his performances has been harshly criticised as has been the case with some of his colleagues.
I only had a minor issue when I was a student at the University of Ghana, back then I used to do comedy and a lecturer wanted me to be in a play which I refused so he started a war against me but it didn’t affect me.’’
On how he would deal with heckling should it come his way, the comedian revealed he has an ideology that guides him.
“I have an idealogy that people who criticise you are industry people who are well versed with issues of the industry and are way ahead of you so I don’t have any issues should they criticise me. I take their criticisms in good faith.”
“On the other hand, those other people who have no business criticising what I do, I won’t even go down to their level because they don’t matter to me,” he stated.
He concluded by calling on the youth of the country to be humble in all their dealings if they wanted to make it in life.