The Chairperson of the EC, Mrs. Jean Mensa, emphasized that such scrutiny should be conducted objectively and candidly to safeguard the nation's peace, security, and democracy.
Addressing members of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) at the 27th GJA Awards held at the Accra International Conference Centre, Mrs Mensa stressed that the EC is not beyond scrutiny but requested that criticism be devoid of insults and falsehoods.
During her keynote address on the theme, “Leveraging Media Freedom to Sustain the Democratic and Security Architecture: The Litmus Test of Election 2024,” Mrs. Mensa highlighted the significance of the upcoming election. She noted that it could either bolster or threaten the nation's peace and security.
Mrs Mensa called upon the media to recognize their pivotal role in protecting Ghana's democracy, peace, and harmony. She emphasized that the 2024 election was not merely a democratic exercise but a test of the nation's resilience.
As partners in the nation's development, she encouraged media practitioners to prioritize the country's interests over political divisions. Mrs. Mensa also pointed out the critical role journalists play as the eyes, ears, and hearts of the citizens.
Acknowledging the media's role in shaping and shepherding the nation's democracy over the years, Mrs. Mensa called for responsible journalism that goes beyond rhetoric. She urged media outlets to uphold the truth and promote transparency, truth, and accuracy, rather than becoming vehicles for propaganda and misinformation.
The EC Chairperson underscored the media's role as the Fourth Estate, stating that they are not just facets of democracy but its bedrock and beacon of truth. She called for the National Media Commission to enforce media ethics and standards to ensure adherence to truth and respect, and to penalize those who violate the rules and regulations.
Mrs. Mensa urged citizens to be discerning and demand the truth from the media, recognizing the unmatched power of the pen. She emphasized the importance of fact-checking information thoroughly to avoid misinforming the public.
The event concluded with the presentation of 34 awards to journalists and media organizations for their outstanding reporting and exceptional work. Mr Erasmus Asare Donkor, a Broadcast Journalist with the Multimedia Group, was honoured as the Journalist of the Year.