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04.02.2009 Sports News

(Me and my big mouth)When the media is sidelined


When those tasked to feed the public with news are denied access to it, then it is just like denying the patient medical treatment.

The headline was what actually happened when the media thronged to the Kotoka International Airport to provide coverage for the triumphant Black Satellites who arrived from Rwanda on a Kenya Airways flight yesterday.

The media, expected to bring to the fore what happened was pushed to the background by some security personnel at the VIP Lounge for reasons best known to them.

A similar incident nearly happened at the Glo CAF Awards held in Ghana some few years ago, when security personnel tried to prevent the media from speaking with the winner, Chelsea's Didier Drogba.

However, Drogba, who knew the importance of the media, prevented the security men by saying, “I wouldn't have gotten this far without the media.”

It took the influence of former Black Stars defender Tony Baffoe to help Maha Ayew, mother of Satellite's skipper Andre Dede Ayew's, to the VIP Lounge.

Amazingly, there were more than necessary “Big men” dressed in suits, as well as supporters groups who had gained entry to welcome the victorious team.

And immediately, what raced through my mind was one of my favourite saying -“When second things are done first, chaos is inevitable.”

“Can you imagine the absence of the media during crucial moments such as the general elections?” a senior colleague, Nat Laryea, Head of Sports for TV 3 remarked.

I believe their crucial role in society was what made them to gain the enviable accord of “The fourth estate of the realm.”

But for the media, society would have been denied a lot by way of news, information and education.

As we struggled in vain to force our way through the crowd to cover the event, some GFA officials also walked in, unconcerned about how the press will gain entry.

I think the team's arrival was poorly organized and I lay part of the blame at the doorstep of the GFA scribe, Mr. Kofi Nsiah.

Imagine the Satellites arriving home yesterday without any media coverage, nobody would have known or heard about it, and that is why the media should be accorded some “respect.”, at least.

It's high time bodies such as the Sports Writers Association of Ghana (SWAG), Association of Sports Broadcasters, Ghana (ASBOG) begin to flex their muscle to receive the needed attention.

When the media decide to go on strike for just a day, can you imagine the kind of society that we will have?

Certainly, it will be like a world without music.