11.03.2024 Editorial

Sane voices desert us (1)

Professor Kojo YankahProfessor Kojo Yankah
11.03.2024 LISTEN

In the run-up to the 2024 general election, sane voices have deserted our political landscape.

Those with megaphones of war have invaded the media space to disturb the country’s democratic dispensation.

Now, our media friends are not guided by their own ethics in their engagement with the public.

All over the world, especially in so-called civilised societies where respect for civil liberties are guaranteed, the media and the people try to uphold freedom of speech, rights protected by their legislations.

We love the Western media and some of the people in the middle class are tuned to BBC, CNN or SuperSports to watch their favourite programmes. And hardly do we find those media channels breaching the rules of the game.

We are ready to be corrected, but let any of our readers tell us whether on those platforms they see the journalists displaying dead bodies and bloodied accident victims as well as announcing deaths without the consent of the families.

Some people even applaud journalists who speculate about the cause of death of our friends and beloved ones. We no longer have regards for the sensibilities of bereaved families and ignore the pain associated with those moments.

Back in the days when in dire situations, we relied on the telegram to deliver information, those in the possession of “bad” news just do not break the information at a public gathering. It is a time-tested tradition to make sure that those affected by the bereavement, ate their meals before they are told about the demise of a loved one.

Today, there is even a competition among media practitioners about who is the first to break the death of a prominent person in society. Many times the people have speculated about the death of prominent people, including former Heads of State that turned out to be untrue.

Our media friends are among the well educated in the country today but media infractions are on the rise every day. These media people and politicians who take delight in deaths and who is next to die know that medical reports are confidential matters between the medical doctors and their patients.

In very serious circumstances, the consent of the patient is sought before even close associates such as spouses and children are informed about the reports.

The misuse of the media to gain political advantage has become more worrying in the election year. Certain journalists and media outlets have become allies in the use of the media as megaphones of war just to wrest power from the ruling NPP at the expense of the country’s peace and stability.

And in the wake of this looming danger, sane voices, including those of our Lord’s Spiritual and Temporal have gone to sleep. There is one person whose loud silence about the abuse of media freedom is a big worry to us.

One-time Director of the prestigious Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ), is a revered personality among the media confraternity, whose stewardship of a media organisation must ordinarily set minds at ease. Also, as owner of an established media university in Accra, where he would inculcate in the students the respect for media ethics and values, makes it difficult for anybody to worry about the waywardness of journalists under his watch.

We are talking about the veritable Professor Kojo Yankah, who is the Board Chair of Media General where Captain Smart practices his trade as a Morning Show host on Onua TV.

Somewhere last year, the National Media Commission (NMC) wrote a strongly-worded letter to the National Communications Authority (NCA), requesting the suspension of the authorisation of Onua TV and Onua FM over their alleged incessant attacks on personalities.

Source: Daily Guide