Former President of Ghana Journalists Association, Gifty Afenyi-Dadzie has charged members of the Ghana Journalists Association to reflect on their conduct to prevent potential infringement of laws that could cause violence during elections.
She was speaking at the Ghana International Press Center during the commemoration of the World Press Freedom day on 3rd may 2023.
According to Mrs. Afenyi-Dadzie, journalists should not assume that elections will continue to be peaceful in subsequent years as it has been over the past few years.
“It is said that an unexamined life is not worth living, and I want to give a special charge to the GJA to reflect on the conduct of our members in recent years and to deal with potential breaches that could spark election violence, God has been so merciful to us as a Nation in the 8th general election held so far in the dispensation of the 4th Republic, we must not assume that we would continue to have peaceful elections without a proactive and conscious determination by all the critical players such as political parties, candidate Media, civil society, organizations, the police, the electoral commission and other institutions and we want to say that all altered must not only be fair but also to be seen as fair by all interested parties.”
She added that political polarization by the media is a danger to democracy thus entreating the media to corporate and eliminate it.
She advised journalists to help the Ghanaian media contribute to the consolidation of the freedom of expression in Ghana.
“I want to say that excessive politicization by the media is a real threat to our democracy as it also leads to a downplaying of the media’s demand for accountability from all political parties. The distinguished alter Sam Aresti has said, that two things form the bedrock of any open society, freedom of expression and the rule of law, if you do not have these things, you do not have a free country. As we celebrate our day, World Press Freedom Day, may it be said that Ghanaian Media contributed to the consolidation of press freedom and freedom of expression in the nation, I entreat you all to corporate with me and all the distinguished personalities gathered here today for a successful program”.
This year’s Press Freedom Day was celebrated under the theme; “Shaping a Future of Rights: Freedom of Expression as a driver for all other human rights.”
World Press Freedom Day is an annual observance celebrated on May to raise awareness about the importance of freedom of the press. It also aims to remind the government to uphold the right to freedom of expression and free press. This year marks the 30th anniversary of World Press Freedom Day.