From 7am – 10am every weekday in the Western and Central Regions, one could easily forget that there are other radio stations in the regions. As if it is the siren of both regions, every radio set is tuned to Skyy Power 93.5 fm for the obvious reason; to listen to the biggest morning show – the Jolly Breakfast Show, hosted by arguably one of the most intelligent Broadcast Journalists in Ghana, Philip Osei Bonsu.
Born on the 10th of October 1984, Philip hails from Manso Moseaso in the Ashanti Region but grew up in Elubo, a town in the Western Region. He began his basic school education at the New Generation Complex School. He acquired some basic education as well at Peters Educational Centre in Kwadaso, Kumasi and later returned to the New Generation Complex School in Elubo to complete his Junior High School education in 1998.
An alumnus of St. John’s School in Sekondi, Philip Osei Bonsu was admitted at the all-boys school in 1999 and completed in 2001. He proceeded to the University of Ghana in 2002 where he was affiliated to the Commonwealth Hall. In 2006, he graduated with 1st class Honors in Linguistics and Theatre Arts.
OB as he is affectionately called by his listeners did his national service with Spark FM in Dunkwa-on-Offin in 2007. His training at Spark FM during his national service gave him insight into broadcasting. Osei Bonsu joined Skyy Power FM in January 2008 as a Sports Presenter. In August 2010, The Morning Show Host then, Mr. Kofi Bentum was on leave when Osei Bonsu was asked to take over the hosting of the morning show. After sitting in for the regular host, management of the station decided to retain him as the substantive host of the show.
In 2012, Osei Bonsu was privileged to be part of a group of young Ghanaian Scholars who won an all-expense paid scholarship from the Tullow Group Scholarship Scheme. From September 2012 to October 2013, he was away in the United Kingdom to study for an MSc in Corporate Communication and Public Affairs at the prestigious Aberdeen Business School of the Robert Gordon University, where he graduated with distinction.
His unique style has won him numerous plaudits in the Western and Central Regions. Depending on the issue, Osei Bonsu takes a stance but always in the public interest. He is seen as the mirror of his listeners since almost all his take on issues are in synch with the public interest. He believes strongly in what John Pilger said that “it is not enough for Journalists to see themselves as mere messengers without understanding the hidden agendas of the message and the myths that surround it” – and that has been his guiding principle. What saddens him as a Broadcast Journalist however is how governments deceive and how a compliant media plays a critical role in disseminating and maintaining the deception. This he believes must change and that can happen when journalists begin to seek the national interest.
Philip speaks about his passion for the job as his greatest inspiration. He believes that to excel in whatever field of human endeavor, you have to love what you do. Secondly, he attributes his unassailable broadcasting success to his production team led by the Executive Producer, Mr. Wilson Arthur and Producer of the Jolly Breakfast Show (JBS), Mr. Emmanuel Ohene Gyan. His motivation to want to serve his listeners keeps him climbing higher all the time. “The fulfillment in seeing people smile because their problems have been solved via the power of radio gets me going” OB revealed.
No big name would be in the Western and Central Regions without been grilled by Osei Bonsu. To many, if a politician or any big name in Ghana visits the two regions and his/her voice is not heard on the Jolly Breakfast Show (JBS), then the giant only visited the south on a casual note. He has interviewed great names like former President John Agyekum Kuffuor, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, Nana Akufo-Addo, Jake Obetsebi Lamptey, Dr. Ekow Spio Gabrah, Tony Aubyn, Mark Woyongo, Dzifa Ativor, Innusah Fuseini among others.
Future of Journalism
Osei Bonsu sees the future of media in Ghana to be very bright. He notes that the Ghanaian media’s audacious attempt at unravelling corruption in recent times is commendable. For him, the timeless words of US President Barrack Obama that – “even in the face of impossible odds, those who love their country can change it” – should spur contemporary Ghanaian journalists on to challenge the status quo since that remains the only way out to make our nation great and strong.
OB intends to be in mainstream media practice for a while longer as he sees that as a tool to help change the fortunes of the Western and Central Regions. Aside his on-air duties as a broadcaster, Philip serves as the Corporate Communications Manager of Skyy Media Group. He doubles as the General Manager of Skyy Power fm (a subsidiary of Skyy Media Group). On a personal level, he is the founder and CEO of OBPR, a Public Relations Consulting firm based in Takoradi. Philip’s vision is to build a world-class Public Relations firm that provides public relations advice and strategic communications services which enable clients to build strong relationship with their various publics and to influence attitudes and behaviors in an increasingly complex environment.
Again, whilst in Aberdeen, together with 4 colleagues, Viam Africa Centre for Education and Social Policy was established. Viam Africa is an independent international policy think-thank with a mission to build a bridge between policy makers and practitioners in Sub-Saharan Africa. Serving as the Corporate Affairs Manager, Philip plans and manages the overall communications and public advocacy strategy that helps to deliver Viam Africa’s corporate objectives in Ghana and the rest of Africa.
In January 2014, Nana Kobina Nketsiah V, paramount chief of the Essikado Traditional Area and life patron of Sekondi Eleven Wise Football Club appointed him as part of a taskforce to run the club. Philip served as the Director of Communications for the club.
Author: Nana Kwesi Coomson (www.233times.com)