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Opinions of Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Columnist: Rockson Adofo

Can we successfully wage a war on corruption without the media’s involvement?

The fight against corruption as desired by His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is an uphill battle. It demands that all discerning Ghanaians get involved before the desired success can be achieved.

Without the media helping to positively disseminate the information and the reasons why we should wage a war against corruption, the bane of the socio-economic development of Ghana, the determination by the President to rid Ghana of corruption will be a mere talk devoid of substance.

Most often when we talk about corruption, the first people that come into mind are the nation’s politicians. Yes, most of the politicians are corrupt. They embezzle public funds and assets. This is a known fact. However, are they the only corrupt persons in Ghana? No! The judges and lawyers are as equally corrupt as the politicians. Our traditional chiefs are also corrupt if not worse. The chiefs sell the same building plot to two or three people. Once they have collected their money, there ensues litigation between the buyers as who is the real owner of the said building plot. Is this not corruption?

Corruption is not only about embezzlement of State funds and assets but principally, about the “illegal, bad, or dishonest behaviour, especially by people in positions of power”. If a chief feels he is an overlord and can reap from where he has not sown with impunity, disregard the laws of the land as though he is an Omnipotent, Omniscient and Omnipresent as seen to be the belief and attitude by Asantehene Osei Tutu II, it is corruption of the highest order.

When our media houses refuse to tackle these persons of all categories by deliberately or otherwise not airing any revealed adverse information about them, then they are not helping the course of fighting corruption. Yes, some of the media houses can equally be corrupt, don’t get me wrong. As they are in business to seek money, they may accept financial or other forms of inducements to directly or indirectly throw their weight behind our corrupt leaders.

Some Heads or almost all the Heads of the Public Services in Ghana are corrupt. It is the media that can help wage a successful war on corruption if they so desire. Therefore, I challenge the media to eschew any quest by them to protect certain corrupt persons by not publishing adverse but true, information on them because of the virtue of their position or because he/she has bought them.

Without the media’s active participation, our fight against corruption will simply be a mere “mouth talk” without any substance. Ghana media, you are an effective weapon to wield against corruption if you will allow yourselves to be used. Don’t feel intimidated. Let us fight with a concerted effort and we shall prevail over the corrupt entities be they politicians, chiefs, heads of the civil services or whatnot.

I hope from today forward, the Ghana media will cease being selective, comparatively lackadaisical but be up and doing.

I shall in the coming days visit the studio of Source radio & TV in London as a guest with some confidential documents on a chief to be aired. Those interested to know what the documents are about, of which some pages will surely be published, should please tune in to Sources radio from time to time to hear me read the contents of the document after D. J. Sources has ascertained the veracity of the document.