The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) has solicited support from the media to drive home its mandate of creating awareness and educating the public about principles and objectives of the 1992 Constitution to enhance democracy and good governance.
The media’s role as enjoined in article 162 of the 1992 Constitution of the country is to uphold those principles and objectives by educating the public about their rights and responsibilities, and hold government accountable for actions and ensure peaceful co-existence and sustained democracy.
Mr Samson Lardy Anyenini, a Private Legal Practitioner, made these remarks at a media advocacy workshop in Kumasi, in the Ashanti Regional Capital, organised by the Commission, with support from the European Union (EU).
The annual event brought together selected media personnel from the five regions of the Northern Zone, namely Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions was on the theme; “Strengthening Civic Consciousness through Media Advocacy.”
The workshop was aimed at grooming selected journalists to fully understand and appreciate the mandate of the Commission to be empowered to give adequate publicity to activities of the Commission as well as guide their content development and reportage.
It was also targeted at training the selected media practitioners to be the Commission’s ambassadors and join in its awareness creation activities.
Mr Anyenini, who is also the Host of News File, a Current Affairs Programme on Joy FM stated that the high level of indiscipline in the Ghanaian society was a result of the media’s inability to deliver on its mandate describing it as “journalism failure”.
He said the media in Ghana needed to be pro-active, know their rights and responsibilities, and the role of the NCCE, so as to help society to understand and appreciate the principles and objectives of the constitution and make the paradigm shift from the much attention paid to political debates and commercials to civic education.
Ms Josephine Nkrumah, the Chairperson for the Commission in her welcome address stated that the NCCE and the media as independent bodies had great responsibilities to serve the people with objectivity and provide them the adequate information to make informed decisions.
Ms Nkrumah mentioned some of the flagship programmes of the Commission including; citizenship week, constitutional week, project citizen among others to inculcate the values of patriotism and nationalism as well as promote high discipline and honesty among the youth and the urged the media to join the campaign.
This she said would help reduce the rate of corruption and ensure good leadership for a better country to live in.
The Chairperson, therefore, called for synergy between the Commission and the media fraternity to build the confidence of the public through education and the watchdog role and added that it would enhance the democratic credentials of the nation.
She commended the NCCE, the media and other stakeholders for the 25 years of peaceful constitutional rule the country had enjoyed and asked the media to sacrifice for the development of the nation.
Nana Kwasi Gyan-Apenteng, the Chairman of the National Media Commission said the media as the fourth estate of the realm in any political environment must be fearless in order to do the right thing and called on the media to believe in their mandate.