A media workshop on the negative effects of alcohol is currently has been organised in Accra on Wednesday .
The one day event which is under the auspices of the Alcohol Policy Alliance - Ghana (Ghana Pa) is under the theme "The Role of the Media in Preventing/Reducing Alcohol-Related Harms in Ghana."
The maiden workshop for 2020, brought together participants from the media, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) regulatory bodies such as the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), the World Health Organisation (WHO) amongst others.
In his remarks, the chairperson for GhanaPa, Mr. Benjamin Anabila described alcohol as a major issue contributing to Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) globally.
He said even though Ghana has developed an alcohol policy document, much needs to be done to ensure that the document reaches its envisaged objective.
According to him, his outfit which was launched in July 2019, has been called upon by regulatory bodies to push for the Alcohol Policy Document to reach its finality.
Mr. Anabila indicated that the objective for the workshop was to actively engage the media to help achieve their goals. "We recognise the media as a powerful force in the discharge of our duties as a Civil Society Organisation (CSO)."
On his part, Mr. Adumako Agyekum of the FDA, assured of his outfit's readiness to partner GHANAAPA in carrying out its mandate.
The FDA is happy to partner with the Alliance and that we are ever ready to support the Alliance to protect the people especially young people, lactating mothers and the vulnerable ones from all alcoholic abuse use in Ghana.
He charged the media to always request for FDA's letter of registration and approval from people or entities that contracts them to carry out advertisements on products before carrying out such advertisements.
Responding to a question on how physically prepared is the FDA in monitoring manufacturing industries, Mr. Adumako Agyekum who heads the FDA's Food and Evaluation Unit, admitted that the FDA is not physically present in every manufacturing industry.
"It is the duty of the manufacturing industries to ensure the products been manufactured are safe for consumption before FDA comes in to inspect if all the required measures have been carried out", he explained.
Participants also called on the FDA to increase its inspection and monitoring duties within the manufacturing industries.
Among the topics tackled were Alcohol Regulations from the regulator viewpoint, challenges of effective alcohol control in media coverage, alcohol control versus industry interference.
Other topics to be tackled also were, an overview of alcohol prevention and control, the global perspective as well as alcohol control and the sustainable development goals and key issues in alcohol control: Myths and Realities.
Alcohol Policy Alliance - Ghana (GHANA PA) is a CSO that focuses on alcohol and its related issues.