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25.11.2008 General News

Ghana ranked 2nd best in press freedom

By myjoyonline

Ghana has been adjudged the second best country in Africa in terms of press freedom.

The country has been ranked second on only to Namibia on the continent by an international group of journalists – Journalists Without Borders.

The Press Freedom Index measures the extent to which the political atmosphere in countries permits journalists to go about their business without any dangers to their lives.

Ghana is also ranked 29 worldwide on the index.

A lecturer at the School of Communication Studies at the University of Ghana, Legon, Dr. Audrey Gadzekpo says the Journalists Without Borders is a credible organisation.

She told Joy News' Evans Mensah there was no reason to think the ranking is not a true reflection of the situation on the ground.

She said even those who grumble sometimes about the political environment do admit there is media freedom in the country.

“There are no arbitrary arrests of journalists, there are not imprisonments of journalists, and journalists are able to operate in an atmosphere of freedom,” she noted.

That she said accounts for the situation where journalism is the fastest growing profession in Ghana.

“We also have a very liberalised media environment with lots of newspapers, lots of radio stations, and a multiplicity of television stations, this will not happen if the political environment was hostile to journalists,” Dr. Gadzekpo emphasised.

The Deputy Information and National Orientation Minister, Mr. Frank Agyekum said the ranking was a confirmation of the government's commitment to allowing the media to operate freely.

He, however, believes there is lot more journalists can do in the pursuance of their careers.

Story by Malik Abass Daabu