Is GJA Serious At All?

First of all, congratulations to all the winners of the Ghana Journalists Association awards. Some of you do great work in spite of the challenges you face daily. Well done!

I couldn’t watch the awards show on Saturday night, but I’m told I didn’t miss much. My friend Kwame Gyan described it as the “worst planned and executed” with “shambolic emceeing.”

The gala is the GJA’s biggest and only event. All the executives do every year is to wait around for the award date to come to remind journalists they’ve been working. Twitter comments indicate that Saturday night was like most of the major awards ceremonies in Ghana. It had the tedious speeches, dreadful musical interludes and ill-defined categories. I hear the Minister of Communications gave his speech at 1am on Sunday morning. Basically the people who organize the porn awards do a better job than the GJA.

This is no surprise to me. How can the executives of the GJA get the awards ceremony right when they cannot perform the basic function for which the association was established? According to the Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition website the “GJA seeks to influence positively the growth of the media by expanding the frontiers of press freedom and enhancing the integrity of professional journalism in Ghana.” The fact that I got this information from another organisation is in itself a major indictment on the GJA.