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4 of Ghana’s most loved celebrities

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Ameyaw Debrah with Becca and Jackie Appiah

I have practiced the art of writing about celebrities for the last 14 years and in the last 11 years of that; I have owned one of the most authoritative portals on celebrity culture in Ghana. One thing I have learned over the years is that it is certainly not easy being famous in Ghana.

I mean take a look at most websites meant for Ghanaian celebrities and you would get a good picture of the state of celebrity culture in Ghana. If the writers or publishers are not mocking or degrading Ghanaian celebs in their articles, the readers are up in arms spilling all manner of insults, outrageous rumours and disparaging remarks in their comments on websites or social media. I’m not saying that these ‘celebrities’ are gods and should be worshiped but the fact that they are in the public eye doesn’t mean that people should just say trash about them. I remember someone asking Moesha Buduong whether she eats digestible food and accused her of being too plastic in the comment section of one of her Instagram posts.

Very often people would even argue that there are no real celebrities in the country because our stars don’t have millions of dollars.  Celebrity is the fame and public attention accorded by the mass media to individuals or groups. In fact even some animals have become celebrities as well. Celebrity status is often associated with wealth (hence the expression, fame and fortune).

While fame through entertainment is commonly associated with celebrity status, political leaders often become celebrities too. People may also become celebrities due to media attention on their lifestyle, wealth, or controversial actions, or for their connection to a famous person. And with platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter growing around the world, a lot if individuals have emerged as stars on these platforms.

I could give many moving quotes about why famous Ghanaians are often not celebrated by their own but that would be depressing to read. Very often, most Ghanaians cannot be bothered. If social media platforms weren’t invented their ‘fans’ wouldn’t notice most of these celebrities. Most fans often take pictures with the celebrities only to share with the world on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.

Based on this background, I have observed throughout my work as a celebrity reporter that in spite of these adversities, some Ghanaian celebrities do get love and the respect from the public. These people enjoy good press and you hardly find people who genuinely have something bad to say about them.  These people have a good following which is often evident in their online presence via Twitter, Facebook etc. They are likeable, they are ‘loved’, they are admired, and they made my list of ‘Real Ghanaian Sweethearts’.

Adjetey Anang

Actor, Adjetey Anang gained cross-country fame as the bad boy people loved to hate on the hit TV series, ‘Things We Do for Love’. His character ‘Pusher’ was the bad boy of the series and he played it so well although in real life, Adjetey is nothing like Pusher. The often introvert actor has since graduated from being a youth TV star to a consummate actor playing a variety of characters.  His dynamism as an actor is much ahead of most of his contemporaries; he knows when to sound very posh and when not to, he expresses himself very well without any affectations; and he hardly does anything over the top. His demeanor has endeared him to many and I am one of the many people who list him as their favourite actor in Ghana. You can learn more now on method acting so you can be as great as Adjetey Anang.

John Dumelo

Actor, John Dumelo is a ladies’ man and when you have the women liking you, you have the world behind you; and well a few guys will hate you. John is one of the few Ghanaian celebrities that I have watched young ladies in public and on TV go ‘Oh My God’ for.  For me, it is not so clear why the ladies love him so much because he isn’t quite the standard hunk that is glorified as the object of every lady’s desire throughout the world.  What I like most about John is the fact that in an era that most of the popular actors in Ghana were of a certain colour and look, he managed to have cross-over success almost from nowhere. John is funny, likeable and often down to earth.

Stephen Appiah

Stephen Appiah, former captain of the Ghana national football team, the Black Stars, is one of the most loved footballers in recent times. He draws the affection of the nation from a sport that most Ghanaians are passionate about and his subtle charisma places him above most of his colleagues. I can’t pretend to know too much about Ghanaian football but surely from what I often hear; Stephen is a great inspiration to his teammates, almost to talismanic proportions.  He is loved and respected not only by his teammates but the nation at large.  When topless photos of the footballer were published on the internet, it became clear that Stephen was loved for more than his skills on the pitch via the comments that popped up.

Jackie Appiah

Arguably Ghana’s biggest actress, Jackie Appiah first gained popularity on the youth TV series, ‘Things We Do for Love’ where she captivated viewers her beauty and infectious smile.  Her character, Enyonam Blagogee was not just pretty but sweat, soft and innocent, endearing her to most viewers – both male and female.  Once her acting career took off, she continued to play the ‘sweat girl’ in several movie roles and perhaps that forms the basis for her admiration by most Ghanaians. She also enjoys a lot of good press, and her image has been well managed as ‘the good girl’.  With several brand endorsements under her belt, Jackie’s face is on several billboards along the streets of Ghana and constantly she is in the face and minds of people. She isn’t just popular but truly a Ghanaian Sweetheart.

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