The Art Teachers’ Association of Ghana (ATAG) congratulate, salute and celebrate all Ghanaian museum staff. We appreciate your hard work! In celebrating this special occasion of International Museum Day (IMD) observed annually on May 18, we encourage all museum staff to continue with the good work they are doing for the nation.

We, the Art Teachers’ Association of Ghana, join hands with the International Council of Museums (ICOM) to celebrate this special day on the theme “The Future of Museums: Recover and Reimagine”. This theme attracts sober reflection on the state of the nations’ national and regional museums considering the fact they have been left to rot under the watch of successive governments after the overthrow of Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah. In celebrating this day, marked annually for the purpose of awareness creation about the great importance of museums in the historical, educational and socio-cultural development of nations, it saddens our heart to come to terms with the harsh historical reality that governments after Nkrumah have done little or nothing to continue and or add to the progressive development of the national museum he built. The 1958 extension works started by Nkrumah have become a place for squatters. It has been left in ruins. Interestingly, Ghana National Museum is one of the oldest museums in West Africa.

The Ghana National Museum in Accra still inhabits the 1957 temporal building which was meant to be one of the galleries of the original structure. Sadly, this temporal structure leaks, making the collections unsafe. On December 24, 2015, this National Gallery of the Ghana Museums was closed to refurbish the leakages when it rains. Sadly, due to lack of political will, the renovation which began in 2015 has not been completed to date. The Museum of Science and Technology (MST) near Accra Technical University (formerly called Accra Poly) also leaks. The Ghana National Museum has been closed to the public for six years now due to leakage of the building.

The national museum is facing leadership deficiency; has magnificent physical infrastructural deficit; serious funding problems; lacks proper branding strategy; and has obsolete laws. The Ghana National Museum needs proactive and action-oriented leadership to address the challenges of physical infrastructure, obsolete laws, funding concerns, and introduce a good branding strategy. This is because the museum shapes national identity, public arts education and enculturation of the current and future generations.

We are, therefore, appealing to the government to Fix-The-Ghana-National-Museum. Our national Museum must reflect our varied artistic cultures, and be a powerhouse of our art history and identity.

Dr Osuanyi Quaicoo Essel
(National President, ATAG)

Daniel Ato Adubah

(National Secretary, ATAG)