Ghana: Mahama - Don't Use NCA Law to Oppress Dissenting Voice in Media

12 October 2019

The former President, John Dramani Mahama, has advised the National Communications Authority (NCA) to desist from using the law to oppress dissenting voices in the media landscape.

According to him, "if the NCA does not stop the deliberate use of the law to shut down pro-opposition stations in the country, stations will be forced to bypass them and use digital platforms to operate instead of using their frequency due to how technology is evolving.

Former President Mahama gave the advice, when executives of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) paid him a visit on Thursday to officially invite him to the association's 24th awards and 70th anniversary slated for November 23, this year.

He indicated that, although the media had fought to open the media space for journalists to express themselves freely, there were still some abuses of media oppression in the system.

Former President Mahama condemned attacks on journalists in discharging their duties and called on the association to protect them to enable the citizenry to be abreast with development.

"There is the need for continuous professional training for journalists to be cognisant with technology to make the best of it in respect of their profession, we should also look at issues of content with the media because there is a lot of fake news in the system.

"Electoral disputes are major causes of conflicts therefore getting elections right and transparent was important, poor conditions of service in the media space leads to poor output in terms of what is disseminated, the implementation of minimum wage for the media is to ensure journalists are comfortable.

Roland Affail Monney, the President of the GJA, observed that the media played a vital role in ensuring that elections were conducted fairly, freely, creditably, transparent, peacefully and successfully.

He indicated that political parties also played a vital role to ensure the success of elections and pleaded with political parties to advise their followers to keep their hands off journalists saying, "Democracy is attacked when journalists are attacked".

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