March 4, 2024

Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin has lamented the poor state of the Ghanaian media and the poor conditions of service of its practitioners, demanding that concrete steps be taken to better the lot of the media such as improved conditions of service and protection of journalists.



The Speaker made this known in a speech at a Press Soirée organised in Takoradi to celebrate thirty years of uninterrupted democracy under the Fourth Republic.

“We are really worried about the state of the media. It’s not only the fear and the intimidation, or the attacks and violence against media personnel but the working environment of the Media personnel…,” he lamented.

“If the media is that important, how come the country has not come out to clearly spell out some conditions of service, even if it’s minimal for the media personnel? How come people don’t appreciate the product of the media? Whether private or private, what the media does is for the public good.

So you can see that because of what is happening to the media, our human rights record is gradually on the decline. And there is the need for us to relook at the welfare and conditions of service of the media practitioner” he advocated.

He called on the Government to endeavour to work to sustain Ghana’s thriving democracy taking into consideration the pivotal role of the media, adding that the media must live up to its billing as the Fourth Estate of the Realm.

“Yes! We have the Executive and it means that they [the Executive] are to execute whatever we decide to do or must lead us to implement whatever we have decided. You have the Legislature which traditionally is to legislate or stamp the decisions taken by all into law. And then we have the Judiciary to mediate and intervene where what has not been legitimised is being used to govern. However, in these three institutions, if we allow them just to be operating, nobody will know what they are doing. And so, as media, how can you improve what they are doing or how can you hold them to do what they must do? So that important arm that links all these important institutions with the people is the media. So the media is so important in a democracy,” he explained.

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Ghanaian journalists and other practitioners have been the subject of physical and verbal attacks, especially in recent times. The killing of investigative journalist Ahmed Suale in 2019 shocked many who saw his murder as linked to his work. Several others have suffered intimidation and violence at the hands of ordinary Ghanaians and even security persons who should know better.



The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), a civil society organization seeking to protect journalists in their practice, has been at the forefront of fighting for the safety and protection of journalists in Ghana



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