By Godwill Arthur-Mensah, GNA
Accra, March 20, GNA - Mr Affail Monney, the incumbent and Presidential Candidate of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), has announced that the Association is on the process of establishing a Pension Fund to promote the welfare of members.
He said the Fund would complement the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) contributions, and members who contribute five years to the Fund before retirement would be entitled to some juicy packages.
He said the next annual general meeting of the Association would discuss and agree on the amount each member would pay and urged the members to support such a laudable cause.
Mr Affail Monney, also a media consultant, made this known in Accra when he visited the premises of the Ghana News Agency on Monday, with some members of the GJA, seeking re-election to share his vision for the Association when given the nod on the March 31 elections.
Mr Monney was accompanied by Mr Dave Agbenu, the aspiring General-Secretary and News Editor of the Ghanaian Times, Mrs Linda Asante-Agyei, the aspiring Vice President and Madam Mary Mensah, the aspirant for Public Affairs.
Commenting on the GJA Annual flagship Awards, Mr Monney said the package for the awardees would be upgraded and award winners would be awarded houses.
He said the Association was negotiating with a real estate company to sponsor the prizes.
He said the Association awarded two brand new vehicles to its award winners during last year's awards ceremony, which was unprecedented in the history of the GJA.
Commenting on capacity-building for members of the Association, Mr Monney noted that the journalism profession was dynamic and therefore demanded frequent upgrading.
In view of this, he announced that it had established an exchange programme with the Black America University in the United States, so that members of the Association could be awarded scholarships to study there.
In addition, he said, the Cultural Consulate of the Islamic Republic of Iran had struck a partnership with the Association for capacity-building programmes for journalists.
The aspiring GJA President gave the assurance that the Association would continue the cordial relationship with the US Embassy which, over the years, had been of immense help to the Association by supporting and facilitating training programmes for its members.
For his part, Mr Agbenu, said the GJA was on the process of registering members of the Association onto an insurance policy.
He said two insurance companies had presented proposals to the Association to study.
He also displayed the architectural designs and artistic impression of the multi-purpose International Press Centre, comprising a 1,500 seating-auditorium, hotel, conference hall, swimming pool, car park and other facilities.
He said the executives of the Association had briefed the Minister of Information, Mr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, who had shown interest to support the project.
Mr Agbenu indicated that the Association was at the verge of unionising and thus, awaiting the Trades Union Congress' General Council Meeting slated for June this year in order to get certification.
Mrs Asante-Agyei indicated that the Association would soon translate the revised code of ethics of the body into four languages namely, Ewe, Twi, Ga and Dagbani.
She said the Association had a Distress Fund lodged with the Fidelity Bank to support members in need, adding that part of it was used to support the family of the late Samuel Nuamah, the Ghanaian Times Presidential Correspondent who died in a motto accident involving the presidential press corps.
She said the website of the Association had been activated and members could visit the site for information and would also create a database of members to facilitate communication and feedback on its activities.
Ms Mensah, gave the assurance that the institutional chapters of the Association would be activated while the Greater Accra Regional Branch would be revived.