GHANA JOURNALITS Association (GJA) yesterday presented prizes to winners at this yearÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s GJA Awards and Golden Jubilee celebration where the association president, Ransford Tetteh, expressed dissatisfaction at the persistent mob assaults on journalists in the line of duty.
Citing the alleged mugging by a bodyguard of ex-president John Agyekum Kufuor on an Adom FM reporter, Mr. Tetteh said the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA) will not entertain such conducts against its members or any journalists for that matter.
The GJA is committed to the protection of the welfare of all members and will take exception to any violence meted out to them, especially on political platforms, he emphasised.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“GJA has received a situational report on the incidence and is soon to be forwarded over to the office of the ex-president for measures to be taken against the perpetratorÃ¢â‚¬Â, he said.
The award winners, including DAILY GUIDE, Best Layout and Design Newspaper of the Year, were given laptops and other branded souvenirs from MTN.
Presenting the items, Ms. Efua Falconer, Customer Service Executive of MTN, said her outfit was happy to be associated with GJA which is the umbrella body of journalists in Ghana and believes in building strong relationships with the media; one is one of their key stakeholders.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The media has supported MTN Ghana in sharing information about all aspects of our business as well as providing constructive feedback from customers regarding our operationsÃ¢â‚¬Â, she added.
Among the award winners was Maurice Quansah, Sports Journalist of the year 2008, who got a special treat – an all expense paid trip to South Africa to witness the FIFA 2010 World Cup.
Charles Benoni-Okine, ICT and Telecoms reporter of the year, will also enjoy an all expense paid trip to participate in the Highway Africa conference in Graham Town, also in South Africa.
Ms. Falconer expressed hope that the communication materials will facilitate and support the work of the journalists by giving them access to information on the go.
In all, 34 laptops, modems and starter packs were presented to journalists in diverse facets of the occupation, who distinguished themselves in 2008.
Dave Agbenu, GJA Organizing Secretary, also took his turn to explain the Ã¢â‚¬ËœsmsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ saga which cropped up during the awards.
He said the idea was to generate more interest in the occasion by asking people to text and predict the possible winners of the awards in the various categories. The outcome of the texting, he added, did not have any bearing on the final decision of committee as to who wins an award.
Two people, namely, Mohammed Baba Yako of Yendi and Emmanuel Amuako of Daily Graphic also received items for correctly predicting the winners of the Sports Journalist and Journalist of the year awards respectively.
By Archibald Owusu-Ansah