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General News of Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Source: Daniel Kaku

GJA and CSO's collaborate with Star Ghana to enhance local governance

The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) in collaboration with selected Civil Society Organizations (CSO's) have teamed up with Star Ghana, to drive support for implementation of initiatives aimed at enhancing local governance in the country.

The role of CSO's including media in promoting activities geared towards improving and sustaining local governance through an enhanced campaign, the partners say, can not be overemphasized following similar effort made in sustaining democracy in the country.

On Monday January 14th 2019, selected journalists from Western and Central Regions benefited from an ongoing nationwide capacity building workshops been organized by the GJA and funded by Star Ghana.

The ultimate objective is to actualize the dream of empowering media practitioners to have a better understanding on all issues holding back local governance that ought to be addressed by Ghanaians and state authorities.

The GJA for instance noted that significant results could be achieved through an effective campaign to influence positive change.

Public Affairs Officer of GJA, Mary Mensah who addressed participants on behalf of President of GJA Affail Monney said "This workshop is aimed at deepening our understanding of the key issues for the imminent decentralization reforms".

She explained that the workshop was the fifth of such zonal workshops organized nationwide.

"Similar workshops had been organized early on for zone one comprising Greater Accra and Eastern Regions, Zone two comprising the Upper West, Upper East, and Northern Regions, Zone Three comprising Volta Region and Zone Four comprising the Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions. The feedback from these workshops indicate that they were very successful", she said.

She further explained that unresolved major issues in the local governance front should be the primary concern of journalists to inform electorates and duty bearers on what ought to be done to improve local governance. "Our job is to deliver on this mandate"

Kojo Impraim, Project Manager, GJA-Star Ghana Project,took participants through various areas of local governance including practices,hits,misses, prospects, key lessons, partnership, case study and civic journalism explained that it was necessary for journalists to understand issues better in order to adequately inform electorates to hold policy makers and public office holders accountable.

The Project Officer, Rebecca Ekpe who opened the workshop appealed to media practitioners to develop interest in local governance. "Lets be change agents in local governance".

Central Regional Chairperson of GJA, Alice Tettey who welcomed participants to the workshop acknowledged the significant role journalists play in shaping society.

She nonetheless cautioned journalists against spin doctrine to please duty bearers or public office holders.