Fritz In Soap Opera
6/7/2012 4:02:37 PM -
Last week, Minister of Information Fritz Baffour did what politicians love to do, during a political activity in the Volta Regional capital of Ho.
For someone who is used to tickling people into laughter, as his primary occupation demands, the possibility of his veering off the serious business of manning an Information Ministry is likely when he has to talk at a public function.
Perhaps on that score, he could be pardoned for his verbal faux pas when he cited the media for being anti-government and going ahead to put forth a weird reason for the disharmony between the two segments of society.
When they pass unsavoury or even snide comments, politicians or those holding political office are quick to withdraw hastily with no tactics to cover their rear when they are exposed. In the ensuing confusion, journalists who transmit the remarks become the fall guys, painted as mischievous or even incompetent for, as it were, misquoting them. In spite of these, however, journalists have continued to soldier on against all the existing odds.
We wish to put it on record that Mr. Fritz Baffuor did say what our reporter filed, regardless of the damage control which the minister put forth when he was caught pants down.
He told his audience in Ho that the disharmony between journalists and government is attributable to the latter's inability to raise the necessary funding to buy off the media. Whatever that means did not come out when Fritz tried to re-present what he told his audience.
It is not only amazing but preposterous that a minister who is barely a year in his appointment would draw such a conclusion. When he was cornered about the remark, he did not only describe the report as false but explained that money is needed to organize interactions with the media et cetera to win them over, by implication. We wonder what he was really talking about. Perhaps, Fritz would have to attempt further explanation.
We are waiting to see how he works to resolve the frosty relationship between government and the media as he sees it, especially as he promised during his vetting that he would work at that.
It is always difficult to determine when persons like Fritz are serious or just churning out jokes. It appeared however that the Ho remarks came from the bottom of his heart, off the soap opera. Be that as it may, it would be good to see how he mends fences between the media and the Mills government, since he has discovered that the relationship is anything but harmonious.
Given his decision that government, in the face of the frosty relationship, would have to rely on the youth for the propagation of policy, it is hard to see how he would go about the Herculean task.
His observation is flawed because given the sentry role of the media in a democracy, journalists should not only publicise government policy, but expose their shortcomings and acts of economic and political misdemeanor. Anything short of this would be untoward and a variation of standard procedure in civil democracies. So Fritz, hold your fire; the media are only doing what is required of them.