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General News | Jul 9, 2004

Producers urged to feature tolerant discussants

GNA

Ho, July 9, GNA - Mr Desmond Duametu, a media observer, on Thursday urged radio programme producers to refrain from featuring personalities with "entrenched" on their talk shows in order to avoid lopsided arguments.

Mr Duametu made the suggestion at a public lecture to mark World Press Freedom Day at Ho. It was under the theme: "Radio, prospects and challenges for nation building". He tasked radio stations to act as vehicles for illuminating the citizenry with cogent debates, "rather than become platforms for alienation."

He observed that the quality of radio programmes was declining because people who were not "cut for radio" have taken to broadcasting. Mr Ralph Avornyo, Acting Volta Regional Director of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), urged professional and technical regulators to ensure that only companies ready to employ competent people were given licences to operate radio stations. He said the current trend among some broadcasters to sound foreign in their presentations was undermining the cultural values of the nation.

Mr Avornyo said it was regrettable that some Journalists allowed their political interests to influence their professional judgements, rather than playing their roles as gatekeepers conscientiously. He said the role of radio in uniting and rallying people for development was important for national cohesion and orderliness.

Mr Avornyo called on Journalists to live by their code of ethics. They should also respect the moral norms of society and win credibility. Mr Kofi Tenasu Gbedemah, Executive Director of Community Radio Network (CORANET), an NGO with focus on rural development, suggested the establishment of a strong base for community radio broadcasting in the country.

He expressed concern about the tendency of authorities issuing licences to city and urban radio stations whose priorities were influenced largely by commercial interests rather than national development.

Mr George Adzovie, Principal Administrative Officer of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), asked Journalists to resist the temptation of using their privileged positions "to defend the indefensible."

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