Accra, Aug. 29, GNA – The 23rd Ghana
Journalists Association (GJA) Awards has been launched in Accra, with a call
for support from Corporate Ghana towards the organisation of the event.
This year, the GJA flagship event on the
theme: “State of Investigative Journalism, Boundaries of Privacy and Borders of
Public Interest”, would take place on October 27 at the Kempinski Hotel in
Accra, with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as the Special Guest of
Speaking at the launch of the event, Mr Affail
Monney, GJA President, said it was needless to state that the work of the
journalist is hellish and that his or her schedules are endless, deadlines are
incessant and newsrooms brusque.
He explained that even in the face of deep set
fatigue, they are expected to deliver peak performance and “It is only fair and
morally justified that those who excel are rewarded handsomely not only by
their employers but more importantly corporate Ghana and consumers of media
content,” he added.
He noted that many individuals and companies
ride on the back of the media to make it big.
“So in the spirit of reciprocity, in line with
corporate social responsibility and for the promotion of the country’s
democratic ascendancy, the media awards must receive overwhelming support at
all times to motivate practitioners to go the extra mile to serve our dear
nation”, Mr Monney stated.
He explained that on the theme, they were torn
between investigative journalism and attacks on journalists to express our
outrage and demand action against the scandalous frequency of incidents.
He pointed out that investigative journalism
was eventually chosen to allow the awards to create a huge deliberative
platform to address lingering issues and emerging concerns over that specialised
area of journalism.
He lauded the Management of Kempinski for
giving out the avenue for the awards programme free of charge.
He said Kempiski’s sponsorship package in
total was worth $40,000 dollars; declaring that this generosity automatically
makes Kempinski a major sponsor for the awards.
Mr Monney also hailed the Ministry of Lands
and Natural Resources for donating GH¢50,000.00 towards the organisation of the
He also expressed deep concern about Mr Hassan
Ayariga, the Founder and Leader of the All People’s Congress (APC) attach on a
Ghana News Agency’s (GNA) Reporter –Jerry Azanduna, and appealed to the
authorities to ensure that he was brought to book.
Mr Ayariga has been accused of allegedly
hiring thugs to beat up Mr Jerry Azanduna, a Senior Reporter of GNA in Bawku in
the Upper East Region.
The GJA President said no one was above the
laws of the country.
Reverend Emmanuel Asante, the Chairman of the
National Peace Council, said the journalist had the responsibility to hold
public officers to accountability, but this must be done with all fairness;
adding that, there was a thin line between privacy and public interest.
He said part of the problems that journalists
faced in the country was the lack of information; he therefore, appealed to the
Government to ensure that the Right To Information (RTI) Bill was passed in
order to help journalists in their line of duty.
Dr Emmanuel Akwetey, the Executive Director,
Institute of Democratic Governance (IDEG), who formally performed the launch of
the awards event, said media exposés on illegal mining had not led to the
successful prosecution of any Ghanaian involved.
He urged journalists to ensure that after the
exposé, they follow up to make sure that there was a successful prosecution of
all wrong doers.
Mr Ransford Tetteh, the Managing Director,
Graphic Communications Group Limited, also urged the media to continue to work
hard to ensure that people were punished for their wrong doings.
He appealed to the current Leadership of the
GJA to continue to knock on the door of the government to ensure that the RTI
He also appealed to Corporate Ghana to support
the GJA Awards; stating that the success of the GJA would go a long way to
benefit Corporate Ghana.
Madam Cornelia Zschunke, Executive Assistant
Manager, Kempinski Hotel, said they were very proud and honoured to be part of
the 23rd GJA Awards.
Officials of the Ministry of Lands and Natural
Resources, Ashfoam Company Limited and Vokacom were at the event to present
The event was attended by veteran journalists
and corporate partners.