2014 is gone forever but it’s on record as a year that affected the entertainment industry in Ghana negatively. It was a year that, some artistes were told to shut up at the law court.
It was also a year that, some artistes were bold enough to drag major companies in the country to court for infringing on their intellectual property. And it was equally such an unpleasant year for the self-acclaimed mad man of the streets.
Few days ago, Ghanaians crossed over from 2014 to 2015. Naturally, it’s a year that most people will not remember but due to its many unfortunate challenges, yours truly doubts if it can easily be forgotten so soon in entertainment circles.
In 2014, the challenges were thoroughly shared, companies that sponsor or support the entertainment industry were hit hard. Many shows suffered as a result of the companies’ inability to meet their financial obligations to most event organisers.
With lack of or no sponsorship at all, event organisers had to inflate the prices of tickets to their events, so as to recoup their investment or break even. The patrons of these shows were the ones who had to bear the brunt of the increment.
Patrons who were not able to adjust to the increment in ticket prices had to stay home and contend themselves with watching repeat telecasts and catching glimpses from television magazine shows.
Whiles event organisers and sponsors had to deal with challenges; the year was equally tough for some entertainment personalities.
Unfortunately, some personalities lost their lives and others are still trying to deal with the difficulties the year presented by Emmanuel Botchwey popularly known as Kwaw Kese, and regarded as the King of the Streets or Abodam, was hit harder than most.
Below are recaps of those unfortunate situations Kwaw Kese found himself in throughout the year 2014.
Losing a manager and a brother
With a rising career and an array of many hit songs and awards to show for it, Kwaw Kese was ill fated to lose the man who had played an instrumental role in helping him attain these heights in his career.
From observation, it seems most musicians after parting ways or losing people who are instrumental in their careers would have fallen off the radar. What many people were waiting to see was how Kwaw Kese was going to fare in the industry with the demise of his closest confidant? People wondered after the murder of Fennec.
For those who might be out of the loop, in March 2014, Kwaw’s manager and confidant, Fennec Okyere, was gruesomely murdered by unknown assailants at his Manet Gardens residence on the Spintex Road.
Prior to being gunned down, Fennec Okyere had complained bitterly about receiving death threats in the media. He took it for granted as he did not put any measures in place to avert or address the situation but instead, he thought he would protect himself.
We can only assume that if perhaps he had taken measures that were expected of someone who had received death threats, Fennec Okyere would still be alive and there would be no need for this piece. Just maybe!!
Divorcing a wife
In 2008, Kwaw Kese tied the nuptial knot with one Ann who was then working with the American Embassy in Accra but the marriage ended in 2014.
After his former manager, Fennec Okyere, was laid to rest on Saturday, April 26, 2014 after being murdered; Kwaw Kese’s latest problem was connected to marital issues. After six good years of marriage, the rapper divorced his wife, Ann.
It’s not yet known what led to the breakdown of the marriage but sources close to the former couple said the two parted ways on mutual grounds and the divorce was finalised subsequently in the United States.
At this juncture, one could feel the pain of the rapper and thought perhaps, there will not be any more challenge to the life of Kwaw Kese. But that thought was shot down, perhaps by design or negligence of the rapper himself or by whatever forces that were working against him.
Arrested for smoking weed
In November 22, about a month to bid farewell to 2014, Kwaw Kese was hit with what can be described as his worst crisis yet. Why? Losing a trusted manager who was your sure bet to success may come with its own problems and challenges.
Losing a wife may not be disturbing news since one has the luxury of getting married again. However, being arrested for a criminal offence and risk going to jail surely is not something that one can smile about.
Kwaw Kese was arrested by the police in Kumasi, for allegedly smoking a substance suspected to be cannabis in public. He was arrested at a wine shop close to a pub at Nhyiaseo, a suburb of Kumasi.
He was refused bail and processed to a KMA Circuit Court and subsequently charged for using a narcotic drug without lawful authority. He was refused bail for about five times before finally getting a bail, all the while, falling sick and being admitted at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi.
What’s the way forward
The way forward for Kwaw Kese is to wait for the commencement of the case and know his fate even though a forensic report on the substance he smoked proved that, it was Indian hemp. If he is found guilty, he risks serving a maximum of 11 years in jail.
By Ebenezer Anangfio / Graphic Showbiz