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Opinions of Monday, 17 December 2012

Columnist: Nuhu, Kashaa

The Supreme Media House In Ghana

The most authoritative news network with distinction clearly demonstrated in the general elections is the Multimedia group Limited, headed by Joy fm. This media house extensively covered the length and breadth of this country just to unravel nothing but the most accurate, informative, and educative news to its listeners. Again, the human resource behind the consul and every department are highly professional and abreast with circumstances around the world and therefore, automatically reigns supreme among other media houses in Ghana. In plain language, Multimedia group is second to none as far as information, education and entertainment are concerned in the broadcasting business.

Multimedia group Limited with an already credible image had added yet another name to the existing outstanding class it has engraved for itself by the accurate prediction of the 2012 polls. This media house during the elections had over 275 correspondents scattered all over the country to cover proceedings. These men and women on the field went through professional training on election related topics just to equip them with the pre-requisite knowledge on election reportage for the purposes of accuracy. Therefore, it will be unimaginably preposterous for any person or group of persons or other media houses to cast sneer at the diligent work of the multimedia group Limited.

Some media houses in Kumasi purportedly to be pro NPP doubt the conduct of Joy FM/news how it was able to disembark accurately on the figure by the EC. I find these vituperations by these media houses very ridiculous and prattle. For instance, the host of the morning show, “maakye” of Kessben FM, Omanhene Yaw Adu Boakye taken an entrenched position why a media house (Multimedia) is allowed to show the results live on Television and on radio. He retorted that, if a political party is accused of inciting supporters by declaring results, then the live coverage of the election on Television is tantamount to the same offense. This remark was made to somehow justify the usurpation of the EC mandate by the NPP.

Another station in Kumasi known as Angel FM with a reputable morning show host in the person of Kwame Adinkra also chide media houses telecasting live the election results as perpetrating what he called unlawful declaration of results in consonance with the prank of supporters by the NPP scribe. Panelists in the studio all accepted this erroneous impression created by this supposed multifaceted host who is well admired by many to educate the public. Little did these men behind the consul in Ashanti region know how Multimedia reporters starved themselves a comfortable sleep in the hostile environment to garner the news and results to their cherished listeners and viewers out of assiduousness?

Ashh Fm, a surrogate station to Oman Fm both owned by the loquacious MP, Kennedy Ohene Agyapong is worse than the station in Rwanda that triggered the Rwandan genocide in 1998. This station and its “mercenaries” led by Lord Inusah Lansah the host, blatantly during the elections were stirring and calling on supporters to lynch people they suspect to snatch ballot boxes. They palpably declared the elections in favor of the opposition NPP and urged their supporters to arm themselves if it was not announced in their favor. It is no surprise to hear these unprofessional remarks churned out on radio by charlatans who were given opportunities without the pre-requisite skills for the job they are asked to do because they were doing exactly what their pay masters tasked them to.

Radio stations in Ashanti region are so much disingenuous to the people by the misinformation and deceit of the public with phony allegations. The core responsibility of the media is to inform, educate and entertain. The latter is perfectly exhausted on radio stations in this part of the country at the expense of the former two. Media commission must get on its toes to check some of these stations which engaged in these unethical practices in our radio stations across the length and breadth of the country. The average Ghanaian shows lackadaisical attitude towards reading, with the gullible public usually depend on these radio stations for information and education with recourse to accuracy and authenticity without being quizzical.

Now I want to drum home to my friends in Kumasi radio stations who were unfathomable about how Joy FM/News had their figures accurately. The Multimedia group has done a vey thorough work as mentioned earlier. Their reporters were in all the 275 constituencies in the country visiting and monitoring polling stations by polling stations for accurate information. These reporters more importantly at the end of polls go to the collation centers where details of polling stations results are collated for the entire constituency.

Every polling station has a polling agent who signed to endorse the free and fair nature of the results in the polling station. These results are reported by polling agents to agents of their political parties at the collation centers where the results are sent by the presiding officer and pulled together and certified by the returning officer and forward them to the electoral commission head office after declaring the winner of the Parliamentary candidate. This is where Multimedia reporters get accurate results to furnish their media houses to broadcast to the general public. These results sent to the stations by their reporters are crossed checked and double checked to verify the provisional nature of them. Before these results are put together at the head office, representatives of the parties in the strong room authenticate them from the collation centers to ascertain the exactitude of the numbers.

Basically, every solemn media house must be able to embark on this tedious job if they really want to be taken serious. The issue of crying wolf on declaring results before the EC is neither here nor there. Every media establishment has the duty and responsibility to mirror the society to the public. They have the right to bring the necessary information to the consumption of the people just as their mandate to break news to the public. Joy FM/News has been doing this over the previous elections and had demonstrated their worth with unyielding image no matter the attempt to discredit or negate their performance.

By the indications to accentuate the points on how to acquire accurate news for media houses, it is now imperative on these idiosyncratic radio stations to upgrade their human resource base through in-service training or organizing seminars for the real players to equip themselves with the required skills to broadcast quality information, education and entertainment as a duty of a media house to the general public who are more prone and gullible.

These violent reports in the region can be attributed to the information the people possess from the various media houses especially the radio stations which made them descend on the susceptible folks with mug. Ghanaians were able to remain peaceful before and during the elections but need extra restraints to stand sturdier against the outcome of these elections. We cannot afford to lose the hard earned reputation in the conduct of elections in Ghana by these few scuffles recorded after successful polls that have the propensity to escalate. Ghana needs PEACE for development. Let us harness our energies into economic gains for a BETTER GHANA.

Kashaa Nuhu