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Opinions of Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Columnist: Agyemang, Frank

Communication flaw at Information Ministry

The Ministry of Information and Media Relations is the most sensitive arm of government when it comes to informing and influencing our perceptions as Ghanaians. It is therefore prudent for anyone placed there to be very cautious the manner he or she handles affairs.

I find it too early for Mahama Ayariga, the Minister for Information and Media Relations to start making avoidable blunders. It is so obvious that the Minister did not do accurate consultation before coming out on matters regarding the relationship between Andrew Solomon and President John Mahama. In Communication, it is better to speak later with accurate and reliable information than to be in haste or be the first to speak only to end up muddying issues and creating credibility challenges.

As a Communication student, there is no way I could commend Mahama Ayariga for acknowledging such avoidable blunder because the Ministry he heads has all the facilities and means available to authenticate or confirm the information before coming out. This is simply avoidable.

His commitment as he has indicated is to provide accurate and reliable information about government and the presidency to the public. May I suggest he includes ‘timely information’ because timing is very essential in communication? In his haste to denounce the relationship between the president and Andrew Solomon, the Minister has dented his personal credibility as well as the office he occupies. Let’s not forget that people act based on perception and if that cannot be managed and controlled with integrity, winning peoples’ trust becomes a herculean task.

Frank Agyemang (agyemangfrank@gmail.com)