Journalists have been asked to help sustain the peace Ghana enjoys by consciously promoting peace in their reportage.
Melody Azinim, Peace and Governance Analyst at UNDP Ghana was addressing News Editors from selected media houses in Kumasi during a multi-stakeholder forum on peace and governance.
She stressed that peace is an essential component necessary for the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.
“This is because of its inextricable nexus with development, a reason for SDG 16 which commits countries to “promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels” she said.
She explained to the journalists that though Ghana is regarded as a beacon of peace in the West African Sub-Region, there are pockets of violent occurrences that threaten the country’s democratic and developmental gains.
“Since conflicts are not spontaneous, it is imperative that the signs and indicators that precede them are identified and managed timeously” she said and added that her outfit; the UNDP is ready to support efforts such as the Multi-Stakeholder platform on peace and governance and other actors in Ghana that seek to ensure peace as the country heads for election 2020.
The Platform brought together officials of the National Peace Council, The UNDP, WANEP, CDD Ghana and the Ghana Journalists’ Association.
For his part, Most Rev. Prof. Emmanuel Asante; Chairman of the National Peace Council advised Media Practitioners to play the role of linguists and desist from re-echoing sentiments that have the potential of disturbing the country’s peace.
He also stressed the need for the media to assert their role as gatekeepers as far as information flow is concerned and therefore take their time to research the information they put out.
The Ashanti regional Chairman of the GJA; Kingsley Hope expressed gratitude for the opportunity created for the region’s media practitioners to add to their stock of knowledge on matters of peace and governance. He stressed the need for more frequent engagements of similar character with the media in order to achieve accelerated impact as the nation heads to the polls next year.
He stressed the need for all hands to be on deck to stop political thuggery as the elections approach.
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