GII Schools Media On Business Integrity Reporting
The Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), the local chapter of Transparency International, last Tuesday organised a capacity building and training workshop for the media, on business integrity reporting in Kumasi.
For two decades now, the GII has been at the forefront of implementing various programmes in the fight to improve citizens’ awareness on the impact of corruption on their lives, strengthening anti-corruption institutions and systems, among others, all aimed at curbing the corruption menace.
Mrs. Mary Awelana Addah, Programmes Manager at the GII explained that the training workshop was to enhance the capacities of the selected media practitioners in financial and business investigations and business integrity reporting and also help to keep the anti-corruption agenda at the forefront of the media discourse, especially for those journalists specialising in business, financial and governance issues.
She said Transparency International believed that business corruption has a negative effect on societies and economies because it erodes confidence in public institutions, harms prosperity, deny equal access to resources and infringes freedom and safety.
Mrs. Addah mentioned some negative impacts of business corruption as tax avoidance and illicit financial flows through establishing subsidiaries in tax havens and laundering the proceeds of such activities through opaque corporate ownership structures which eventually undermine investment and access to critical services like healthcare and education.
The Programmes Manager stated that several issues bordered on integrity of business and contractual arrangements which do not look well in the eyes of the international community hence journalists must play a role as major stakeholders in promoting transparency and integrity in the business space.
Mr. Michael Okai of GII, who did a presentation on ‘understanding corruption’ categorised corruption as; bribery, embezzlement, fraud, collusion, extortion and patronage, and stated that the vision of GII is to promote “a corruption-free society where all people and institutions act accountably and transparently and with integrity.”
He emphasized that corruption hindered the fight against poverty and was also able to bring about instability because people who dubiously amassed wealth are able to manipulate the system which sometimes resulted into social unrests.
A media practitioner, Mr. Kofi Adu Domfeh, who was a facilitator explained the role of journalists in promoting business integrity as similar to the “dos and don’ts” in the code of ethics for the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA).
From Thomas Agbenyegah Adzey, Kumasi