So yesterday was Barcamp Takoradi and if you really want to know where Ghanaians want to go with this oil they say we have found, next time you hear of Barcamp anywhere, please, stop whatever you are doing and go. Have you heard?!! Ɛdeɛn??

The event was fun, I tell you. The students of Takoradi Technical Institute should be some of  the greatest unheard stories in the world. Hiding in that school by the roadside and doing their own marvelous things in West Africa’s only fabrication lab. The best thing to happen to Ghana since kelewele.

So, we are all in this great Barcamp think-tank rolling about when someone drops the question, “If you  had 1000 cedis, what in the name of entrepreneurship will you use it for?”  Wait, wait, wait don’t start giving your answers yet. Mind you, the theme of the thing has to be respected and it is “Leading and Enterprising in an Oil and Technology Driven Economy”. Whatever answer you give, respect the key words : Entrepreneur, Oil, Technology, Economy!!! So the game begins.

Speaker number one: “I will start a communications sales outlet so that as more people come in, they will buy my scratch cards and raise me some profit”. We clapped.

Speaker number two: “I will build a small fruit market so that I can raise a sale from the many foreigners who come to Takoradi and will definitely stick to their dessert-eating traditions”. We clapped some more.

Speaker number three: “I will start work on market journals to publicise and inform residents here on the activities of all the oil companies so that nobody feels left out”. We clapped the louder evermore.

So imagine our shock when one dude seemed so lost on the whole thing and when the mike was tossed to him to say what an innocent 1000 cedis will do for him and Ghana’s oil industry, olalaaa: “I will travel to Nigeria and go and buy blank CDs and come and sell”. How we laughed???

You will take 1000 cedis! Take car from Accra! Go to Nigeria! Buy CD. And come and sell in Ghana!!!! Ohhh, how the Customs people will bless your mother and your  father!!

So we laughed, and the young man was feeling jolly about the whole thing. That here he was, sitting with big big people coming from all over the place and he has made them laugh. Why, they will remember him always.

And so the day went. One dude walked up to me and asked if  it wasn’t amazing how the fabrication lab worked. And then we got stuck in youthful philosophical conversation, about how the whole continent should be properly run to cater for all the imbalances. How there could be so much food in one place and so much hunger somewhere next door. How we should all start planting trees all over to save the climate directly over our heads; How we could so much propose it right as young people and then watch it all go wrong when we get responsible; How we have to stop talking and start working out our ideas because everything we are saying now has been said before at some point and only not worked at, and then who is this guy who just walked into our conversation, with little  knowing where we started and how far we have come, just start lecturing us on how we can do it, we can do it, we can do it. We stood there shocked and speechless. We were shocked, I tell you. Shocked because this guy naaa was the one who stood up at the beginning of the whole camp and said there is a big problem with the black man because of how wrong we get everything done when we want to get it done. Now he is saying that we can do. Ohh, Barcamp washed his sins away!! His life has changed forever and ever, Amen!!

So we enjoyed Barcamp Takoradi and I hear there will be national Barcamp in Accra on December 18th. I told the guy that I will love to see him there and probably introduce him to the forum as the chap who benefited most from this Barcamp Takoradi. Maybe he will get a few people to give him a contract and make everybody happy

In ten years, Ghana would have shown the rest of the world how to run an oil economy without hitches. And my dear friend the born-again, wherever he is then, will be glad for a certain time he met with campers in Takoradi. Seriously, I think we all will  be doing GH a lot of good if we came to the party and put our hands to it.

Emm, Takoradi is the only place in Ghana where you still hear tunes like “Ɔdɔ yɛ dɛ sen sika, Ɔdɔ yɛ dɛ sen wiase”  and the like. Somebody should tell them that now Ɔdɔ is not as sweet as when our fathers escorted our mothers to the riverside and helped them raise the whole pot unto their heads, while our mothers giggled shyly about the whole thing. When they tied the cloths around their torso only and strutted their figure all over the neighbourhood. It was better than Miss Malaika, I tell you.

So come to Takoradi, but please, attend Barcamps too, eh? And make sure you savour a little of the original Ghana flavour that made highlife what it was in those days.  You will be smiling, Walaahi!!



  1. Thanks, Ato, for interest in this blog. The dream is to support anything Ghanaian worth supporting. Barcamps have met us at the right time. More vim to you and the crew.

  2. Great piece here but you forgot to mention that lots of business opportunities were discussed and free consultancies were given by many of the participants as well as other enterprising entrepreneurs.

  3. Yes, Donald. Originally I thought the post still needed a little touch up but to keep with the fresh Ghanaian-ness of the blog, I think it fits. Again, I did not intend it to be the most comprehensive report coming out of Barcamp. Good you mentioned the benefits. Makes the blog post more complete now.

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