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Opinions of Monday, 4 July 2022

Columnist: Zambaga Rufai Saminu

The new GJA president: Members expectations & exhortation

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In the history of Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), the name of
Albert Kwabena Dwumfour would definitely be written in gold and the reason is not far fetched.

The entrepreneurial media practitioner, has succeeded in becoming the youngest journalist to lead the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) following his historic victory chalked during the GJA elections on 24th June 2022 and subsequent swearing in of all elected regional and national executive on 30th June 2022.

Apparently, the charismatic President, known for holding a huge social capital in the country, also becomes the first private individual, an employer, entrepreneur to lead this sophisticated organization, considered by many Ghanaians as the most discerning establishment expected at all times to hold duty bearers accountable.

As the first person to have secured all these impeccable records, in all of these, heading the organization, made up of intellectuals, academics, knowledgeable batch of critics, obviously mean that, he must have prepared adequately, and definitely possessed the political will, nous needed to break more than a decade of misunderstanding between the private media and public sector media organizations.


The first hundred days of his administration, would therefore favor quick delivery of reachable goals embedded in promises made during the campaign and within the spectrum of backing his words with action.

Within this incisive period, Albert Kwabena Dwumfuor's Presidency again, would usher in an era of a united GJA, in which the welfare of Ghanaian journalists would reign supreme.

This is because, he polled high during the execution of this year's elections and his resonated welfare campaign message, was embraced by majority of voters hence the overwhelming victory chalked.

He was admired by the voters and not mired by a last minute calculated rancor, planted dubiously by opponents through an unfounded allegations hinged on bribery and corruption.

This, spectacular dramatic spectacle, created by Moses Dotse Aklorbortu, though dark and deadly, was sharply diffused and detonated in his face as the servant diabolic, immediately after all and sundry, within the media space realized it was fundamentally cooked and served hot to mar the peaceful electoral process, and to disturb the comfortable foreseeable fortunes of the leading candidate, Albert Kwabena Dwumfuor.


Now that we are moving into the next phase of GJA development and growth, which Albert Kwabena Dwumfuor is set to accelerate, it would be untenable not to guarantee members of a determined social transformation.

It is incumbent to have everyone on board as key stakeholders taking part and contributing towards an even more inclusive growth and a more united GJA.

However, quality leadership to guarantee good performance of the Association, would not just happen miraculously without Tom Dick and Harry playing a part.

It would take time and perseverance, along with the implementation of sound structural reforms, and well targeted public and private investments within a stable and planned development framework.

The GJA, is on a long and painful road to recovery following despicable leadership offered by successive executive and many years of control by a known cabal.

The deadlock, that greeted all activities of the Association by this cabal, created a mess out of every step towards the conduct of the just ended elections.

A simple election, hitherto to determine the wayfoward of the organization, did not only attract unpopular, unwarranted and unwanted public uproar, but caused disturbing obfuscations.

The only Association in Ghana to have defaulted in organization of its national and regional elections just because of not having a clean voter register to grant members in good standing an opportunity to vote.

Many discerning minds felt this was a negligible problem, that simply could have been avoided with proper data collection, management.

For many observers, the issues could have been resolved years before the period of the elections, but for the selfish interest of few individuals who were bent on destroying the Association to satisfy their whims and caprices despite series of measures from notable, responsible and respected figures to help deal with the destructions, disruptions and obstructions.


Having re-established its authority over its members with the conduct of this free, fair and peaceful reconciliatory elections, the GJA must once again focus on its priorities which are capacity building (education) for its members, equal access to opportunities within the organization, welfare programs for all members, credible organization of annual awards and the traditional role of rekindling the healthy relationship previously existing between the organization and all its working partners.

These institutions, including foreign Embassies in Ghana, civil society organizations, departments within United Nations, African Union, European Union, ECOWAS, among others, are the bulwark in terms of collaborations.

Now that a peaceful election has been conducted, to ward off all crises, members of this noble organization must work hard to ensure transitioning continuity.

There must be an amplifying program to guarantee that the confidence of members would be restored, and strengthened, ahead of impending development goals.

In line with this, all disgruntled members of the Association currently sitting on the fence, must be brought back to join mainstream activities and contribute their qouta to development of the group.

In doing so, all the mistakes made, which regrettably had caused the group these present challenges, must be tackled robustly to avoid cyclical repetition of same mistakes in order to make the Association professionally attractive, goal oriented, and the pace setter in mobilizing civil society to promote good governance, national cohesion and ultimately development.