Speaker of Parliament extols Ghanaian media 

Ghana’s Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin,has extolled the Ghanaian media which he sees as vibrant and robust when it comes to promotion and protection of democracy.

The Speaker, who was interacting with media practitioners in Kumasi, as part of a three day working tour of the Ashanti Region, called on the public and the State to invest in the media and thus empower them to deliver.

He explained his position, which is premised on the fact that the media had played an effective role in promoting democracy, having also personally benefited from enhancement of his contribution to democratic governance over the years.

Mr Bagbin indicated that partnership with the media has propelled him to his present status and stressed that the partnership between the media and Parliament must be sustained, to educate the public on its processes and operations.

He said Parliament intends to institute Broadcasting, Media Relations, Public Engagements departments, as well as a Citizens Bureau to engage the media to liaise with the public and get a good mix of public interest.

The Speaker of Parliament also called for standard conditions of service for media practitioners in Ghana to enable journalists to discharge their duties effectively.

He urged the National Media Commission (NMC) to dialogue with stakeholders in the media industry and develop a framework that spells out standard remuneration for journalists in Ghana to sustain professional standards and avoid the pit of compromise.

He stressed the need for sustained standards in conditions of service for the media to facilitate its role effectively.

Mr. Bagbin saw the 2024 elections as crucial, for which Parliament has decided to reach out to all major stakeholders to ensure that the impending elections are free, fair, transparent and credible.

As a result, Parliament plans to consult the Electoral Commission to ensure that its processes and operations before, during and after the elections are free and fair.

He said while he is yet to confer with the President and some eminent chiefs to this effect, he had already discussed the issue with the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II.

Parliament, he said, would also move to partner with the Chief Justice, the National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) and the media to ensure peaceful elections.

Sharing his views on the continued payment of ex-gratia to officeholders as provided for by Article 71, the Speaker of Parliament reiterated his stance that it no longer serves its intended purpose.

According to him, there was the urgent need to review the Constitution because it has outlived its original intention to pay ex-gratia to certain public servants and political officeholders as a way of controlling corruption.

The Speaker supported the call for Amendment of Article 71 of the Constitution to abolish the payment of ex-gratia.

He, however, explained that extreme partisanship and adequate financial support have always curtailed initiatives to amend some entrenched provisions of the Constitution and called on stakeholders to prioritise amendment of the Constitution to move the nation forward.


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