My comment was to John Dumelo, not all actors - Ayorkor Bocthwey defends her statement

Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has responded to backlash a comment of hers has been attracting.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey

Pulse Ghana

Hon. Shirley whilst speaking at an NPP rally in Ayawaso West Wuogon where John Dumelo is contesting for the parliamentary seat on the ticket of the NDC, said “parliament is for serious minded people and not people who have done some movies and think they are popular".

She continued that "it is a serious place; I will tell him; the laws of the country are enacted in parliament. If our President can continue his job very well, he needs Lydia Alhassan in Parliament to do the job so that all you need as a constituency will be easily given to you".

Some people in the creative arts industry have been outraged by the comment, describing it as a disrespect towards the players in the Creative Arts industry. Key among those who chastised the Minister is Zapp Mallet.

The highly respected Ghanaian sound engineer lamenting over Shirley's comment said "when I heard it I felt like some spit had been thrown on you. I really admire that woman because I have lived in Anyaa before so for that to have come from her I was very shocked because how could she have acted such a thing".

He continued that "actors are also citizens and they can also serve in whatever capacity they are, you can't just open your mouth and say actors are not serious......in America one of the best American President to have served in recent times was an actor, Ronald Reagan and he served for eight years and he was so good".

The Ghana Actors Guild also called on the Minister to retract and apologize for her comment. An excerpt from Press Statement stated "RETRACT AND APOLOGISE FOR DEROGATORY REMARKS ... It is rather unfortunate that in a period where people are critically thinking of strategic moves to make to better their lot as citizens of Ghana, we have had to respond to a very shameful and repugnant comment from Madam Shirley Ayorkor Botchway".

However, the Minister in Press Statement has explained that her comment was targeted at Lydia Alhassan's political opponent and not to the entire film making industry. Hon Ayorkor Botchwey went on to add that she has respect for the Creative Arts industry. Read the details in the letter below.

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