Journalists have been urged to work hard to build and sustain public confidence in the media.
This is because the public keeps losing confidence in some sections of the media, as a result of poor reportage on the part of some media personnel, and others not sticking to the ethics of the profession.
Mr Affail Monney, President of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), said this on Wednesday at a thanksgiving service, which was held in Accra to climax the GJA’s 70th-anniversary celebrations.
The GJA President lauded the efforts of journalists who pioneered the cause of journalism in the country from 1949 till this year, 2019 saying, “it has not been an easy road, but we have still prevailed.”
He noted that as a result of tireless efforts by both past and current practitioners of journalism in the country, the GJA evolved as one of the most vibrant organisations in the world.
Mr Affail Monney said considering the fact that journalism was filled with great risk, long and tedious hours of work as well as experience of harsh conditions and situations, it was important to give thanks to God periodically, for protecting journalists as they performed their duties.
He said thanksgiving services would, therefore, be a prominent feature of the GJA from now onwards.
“Our way forward is to give the GJA a firmer spiritual underpinning,” said the GJA President.
The Most. Reverend Professor (Prof) Emmanuel Asante, Chairman of the National Peace Council, said in his anniversary sermon, that the peaceful socio-political atmosphere that Ghana enjoyed, was because of the basic appreciation the populace had for God’s mercies.
He commended the leadership of the GJA for demonstrating their awareness of the mercies of God, because such awareness held seed for future grace and blessings.
Rev. Asante quoted Isaiah Chapter 11, verses six to nine and said that portions of the Bible, taught Christians that it was possible to look forward towards a brighter future, amidst a seeming discouraging and chaotic present.
He said in the face of approaching elections, which typically sparked anxiety and fear, journalists had a duty to be truthful and, responsible in their reportage, in order to ensure and promote peace and stability in the country.
Rev. Asante also urged journalists to find ways of exposing and preventing the spread of fake news, which had the potential to destabilise the country.
He said it was unfortunate that some people were prophesying doom with the approach of election 2020, adding,“there will be peace in Ghana because you still stand by the truth and would not allow yourselves to be used.”
The occasion also saw prayers being said for the three arms of government, the media and the nation as a whole.
A love offering was also made to be donated to the Accra Psychiatric Hospital.
The occasion was attended by GJA executives, heads and representatives of both state and private media organisations, members of the clergy, media personnel, and a number of state dignitaries.
Live music was provided at the occasion by a number of musical groups including the Ghana Police Band Chapter Three Eagles Band, the GBC choir and the DYC choir.