Actor and producer, Femi Branch, shares fond memories of his trip to Ghana with Joy Marcus. Enjoy…
How often do you travel in a year?
I can’t count because my job involves frequent travelling. Also, I enjoy travelling around the country but in recent times, that has been a nightmare. I had to travel from Lagos to Kogi State on two occasions, and it was terrible because of the bad roads. Meanwhile, the beautiful thing about travelling by road is that you get to see a lot of people on the road and you discover different cultures. I remember a place where I usually ate fresh pounded yam and bush meat whenever I travelled but now, I can hardly do that because of the bad roads. However, I travel frequently out of Nigeria but my most memorable travel experience was in Ghana.
When did you visit Ghana?
I have travelled to the country a couple of times and my last trip there was early this year. I travelled there to host an event and it was my third time of visiting Ghana. Each time I visit the country, I always have a reason to appreciate the place. I am saying this to challenge Nigeria and not because anyone is better than the other.
The Ghanaian airport was very clean and beautiful. It is so sad that we don’t have that over here.
What was the highlight of your trip?
What made Ghana so memorable for me was when I visited a restaurant to demystify the jollof rice argument because anytime I visited Ghana in the past, I ended up not eating their jollof rice. But on my last trip, I was determined to taste it. After I ate it, I was disappointed because of the hype that it had attracted. It was nice but it was not extraordinary. After I left the place, I spoke to a Ghanaian friend about the disappointment I had and she promised to cook another one for me. After she cooked it, there was just a little difference. To me, Nigerian jollof rice is more delicious, especially the part at the bottom of the pot. However, Ghanaians are nice and friendly people.
What did you enjoy the most about Ghana?
I enjoyed the nightlife. It was really interesting to see that Ghanaians had a vibrant nightlife like Nigerians. It was really fantastic but it can never be compared to what obtains in Lagos. I really liked the atmosphere; it was lively.
How did you pay for your expenses while there?
I changed my naira at the Ghanaian airport in Ghana. I travelled with a friend that frequents Ghana; he connected me to the person who helped me out in changing my naira to cedis.
How would you assess security in Ghana, compared to Nigeria?
I have never felt insecure in Nigeria. I have been to different countries and I have found that it is the same all over the world. I think the people that feel insecure don’t live here. The problem we have with insecurity is not peculiar to us because every country has one or two challenges as regards security. There are armed robbers in every country and there are places in every country where you have to be careful. If you don’t move at the wrong time and in the wrong place, you won’t have security problems.
What’s your advice to people who want to travel?
Go prepared because something as little as a toothbrush or toothpaste can mess you up and the hotel will not be able to get it for you. Also, pack in advance before travelling so that you don’t forget something very important.