The Brong-Ahafo Regional branch of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has expressed discomfort over the impasse which has erupted between Ghana’s two major political parties and Management of Angel FM, a Sunyani-based local radio station.
The Association has therefore called for a dialogue and amicable solution to the misunderstanding between leaderships of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the region and the Management of the radio station.
Last week the NPP and the NDC issued separate press statements to register their displeasure over what they described as “unprofessional and open biases” by the radio station, which is a subsidiary of the Angel Group of Companies.
To that effect, they decided in the statement, which went viral on the social and other traditional media outlets in the country to boycott all media engagements on the local FM station and their affiliates in the region.
But, a press statement issued by the Association and signed by Dennis Peprah, the Brong-Ahafo Regional Secretary, and copied the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on Monday in Sunyani expressed regret over the stalemate and pleaded for peaceful resolution of it.
“In fact we regret and totally condemn without reservations these happenings, and it is our utmost desire and humble plea that the Management of the Angel Broadcasting Network (ABN) would sit down with the NPP and NDC to dialogue to find lasting solution to the problem and smoke peace pipe in the supreme interest of the region, and by extension the nation”, it said.
Undeniably, the important role of the media and political parties towards nurturing Ghana’s infant democracy cannot be over-emphasised, hence the need for the media and political parties to work in an atmosphere of peace and harmony to build on our democratic principles of governance, the statement admitted.
It noted the “Leadership of the Association, which remains the major umbrella of Journalists and some media practitioners in the country has also followed the trend of events with keen interest and we are hopeful that this impasse between management of Angel FM and the two political parties would be, and must be resolved amicably”.
As the Fourth Arm of Government, and a key player to enhancing constitutional rule, the Association believed the media must be able to collaborate, and work effectively with all key players to help consolidate the gains of the country’s fledgling democracy so far, promote freedom of speech and uphold and defend the rule of law.
According to the statement, it required a robust and proactive media for Ghana’s multi-party system of governance to progress.
It reminded and admonished media institutions, Journalists and media practitioners on the need for them to strictly adhere to good ethical standards, high sense of professionalism and civility in the discharge of their constitutional responsibilities.
As Ghana gears towards Election 2020, the Association entreated not only good standing members of our noble Association, but media organisations and practicing Journalists in general, to be circumspect in their reportage to help deepen national peace and promote social cohesion.
This, it believed could be achieved, if the media guarded against negative tendencies that could easily trigger political violence, and subsequently derail the gains of Ghana’s infant democracy so far, and jeopardize the prevailing national peace and tranquillity.
The statement also assured all political parties of its readiness and commitment to ensure that all media houses in Brong-Ahafo give fair and balanced platform to all political parties in the region.