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General News of Thursday, 23 April 2020


Media not innocent: we’ve become extortionists – Ken Kuranchie

Ken Kuranchie, Editor of the Daily Searchlight Newspaper Ken Kuranchie, Editor of the Daily Searchlight Newspaper

Ghana has been falling steadily in the Press Freedom Index, which is an annual ranking of countries’ press freedom levels by assessing their press freedom records in the previous year.

In the last 3 years Ghana has steadily dropped from 23, 27 to the 30th place subsequently in the press freedom index.

With almost every journalist and citizen blaming Ghana’s fall in the press freedom index on government and police brutality, Ken Kuranchie, Editor of the Daily Searchlight Newspaper, has towed a thin line which many journalists will not be happy with. But may be the hard truth.

Speaking on Happy98.9FM’s ‘Epa Hoa Daben’ with Okatakyie Afrifa-Mensah, the journalist asserted that the media has also contributed to the country’s fall in the press freedom rankings over the years. He said, “The media is not innocent in our fall. We as journalists have become extortionists, blackmailers and also infringe on the rights of other people”.

According to him, it is because of incidents like the aforementioned that the media cannot do its work properly, and that regard for them has also been reduced pointing that, the media has “gagged itself” in the process.

He proceeded to appeal to Ghanaians and the government not to allow the media suffer because of its sins but rather protect it. “We have our sins but the media is the baby and asset to the country”, he added.

READ MORE: Happy FM’s Afrifa-Mensah gifts listener sewing machine and gets others jobs

The member of the National Media Commission also charged institutions established to protect journalist to be proactive. “The government, Ghana Journalist Association (GJA), Media Foundation for West Africa and the National Media Commission (NMC) should begin to think on how to make the media terrain friendlier”, by engaging Civil Society Organization’s (CSOs) and institutions with the tendency to abuse the rights of journalists before it even happens.

On his authority, individuals and organizations being criticized by journalists should refrain from attacking these journalists. “Criticism is not a bad thing, it makes you better, and if anyone, be it government or security agencies are criticized, then it is in their own interest”.

Ken Kuranchie pleaded with journalists to always remember their essence saying, “If Ghana had not met the media during the former President J.J Rawling’s regime, Ghana would’ve have suffered”, and they should be always reminded of that in executing their duties objectively.

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