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27.05.2004 General News

Plans underway to connect GIJ to the Internet

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Accra, May 27, GNA - Mr Jean-Michel Berrit, France Ambassador in Ghana on Thursday said feasibility studies to connect the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ) to the main server of the University of Ghana (UG), Legon to enable the Institute have free and reliable access to the Internet was being conducted.

He said this was to promote the values of quality, diversity, democracy and pluralism among the Ghanaian media.

Mr Berrit announced this during a familiarisation tour of the Institute.

He said the teaching of French at the Institute was part of France's vision to provide professionals with skills required to be well integrated and educated.

The Ambassador said the Embassy had, therefore, supported the Institute with a computer, accessories and a Francophone satellite TV to facilitate the learning of French.

"Journalists play a central role in the strengthening and flourishing of democracy in the country and they are now sharing responsibilities with political leaders and should be assisted", he said.

Mr Berrit said France, was actively involved in the promotion of free, fair and peaceful elections and in partnership with the UNDP organised a roundtable meeting on: "The Ghana Media and Election 2004", which was attended by representatives of the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA) and the political parties.

It was to foster exchange of experience and ideas between media practitioners and the politicians on the coverage of the elections. He said it was not enough for Journalists to only publish and broadcast news but endeavour to undertake research to foster peace especially during the elections.

Mr David Newton, Director of the Institute, urged the students to take their French lessons seriously to enable them to communicate effectively with their French counterparts in international assignments. He said the Institute had made remarkable improvement in the French Language, which would be made compulsory soon. He said about 50 per cent of the first year students were offering the subject.

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