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10.09.2004 General News

NDC spokesman bashes GBC board chairman

By jfm

The Director of Communication of the National Democratic Congress, John Mahama, says the refusal of the board and management of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation to carry out a National Media Commission directive is most unfortunate.

Professor Stephen Addei has rebuffed an NMC directive asking the management of GBC to unconditionally reinstate five workers of the corporation who were interdicted some two weeks ago.

The board chairman says the NMC is interfering in what he terms an internal management issue and that the NMC's action runs at variance with some corporate management principles.

But Mr. John Mahama said that GBC is a state-owned media entity and as such the NMC's action is supported by constitutional provisions. He said GBC is not a normal corporate organisation, as such the board chairman cannot say the NMC's directive amounts to interference and also against corporate governance principles.

“The place is not a normal corporate body which you can run with normal corporate principles. GBC's staff and editors are protected by constitutional provisions and as such the NMC's action is in order” he said.

The NMC last night failed to reach a concrete decision on the impasse at the national broadcaster at an emergency meeting over the issue. The commission is expected to hold another meeting to look into the issues again for a definitive action.

But Mahama said that the NMC must descend more heavily on the GBC board and management. “The NMC must take a more stronger action on the board and management than it is doing now. It must descend on them and insist that the right thing is done to protect the journalists there”, he said.

The board and management of the corporation have recalled four of the five interdicted staff.

The director of TV, Charles Kofi Bucknor remains on leave.

The recalled staff will be reassigned and also given warning letters cautioning them on the roles they played in a Ghana Airways story that was aired on national TV which the authorities say was embarrassing to both the government and the airline.

The action runs contrary to the NMC's directive, which said the five be reinstated to their former positions unconditionally.

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