Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia says the government is committed to ensuring the safety of journalists in the country.
Ghana has come under severe criticism in relation to media freedom following countless attacks on journalists in the line of duty.
The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has admitted that the lack of stringent punishment for perpetrators of crimes against journalists, only emboldens others to engage in similar crimes.
Speaking however at the 24th GJA awards, Dr. Bawumia indicated that government is working with the Association to institute a coordinated mechanism to ensure the safety of journalists as well as a capacity enhancement programme for media personnel.
“The need to have a coordinated mechanism, for the safety of journalists has gained prime importance in the world over as attacks on journalists have been on the rise globally. Additionally, the need to have media function exceptionally in our democracy has birthed the capacity enhancement program. I am informed that your leadership has been working closely with the government through the Ministry of Information in designing these interventions. It is my expectation that these interventions will serve us all very well.”
Meanwhile, President of the GJA, Roland Affail Monney called on all and sundry to help fight against the impunity, which he says is downplaying the work of journalists in Ghana.
Ghana’s media ranking on a low
There have been several incidents of physical attack and abuse of journalists in Ghana in the course of their work.
The death of TigerEye PI's Ahmed Suale in January 2019 following the team's production of the football corruption documentary sparked global outrage, leaving a blot on Ghana's reputation as a safe space for journalists.
An index on World Press Freedom by Reporters Without Borders, saw Ghana losing its spot as one of the best-ranked countries for press freedom.
The county dropped from 23 in 2018 to 27 in 2019.
A significant number of the recent assault on journalists have happened at political events.