19th GJA Awards Launched

David AgbenuThe 19th Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) Awards was launched in Accra yesterday with the most Promising Young Journalist Award named after Ace journalist, Komla Dumor.

The ceremony slated for August 30 at the Banquet Hall in Accra would honour 49 journalists and media houses whose work stood tall in 2013 with Prof P.A.V Ansah, the prestigious Award, to be handed over to the journalist of the year.    

This year’s award on the theme, ‘Using development journalism to discern and defend national interest’ saw the rolling of new category of awards. They are Local governance and decentralisation, best talk show and forestry.

Launching it, the President of GJA, Mr. Affail Monney said the role of journalist cannot be overemphasised as far as national development was concerned.

He said whether in the area of politics, economy, business, agriculture, health, energy, environment, science or sports among others, pursuing a development agenda was the best way forward for the Ghanaian media.

‘We believe that through development journalism we stand a better chance of not only informing and educating the citizenry but monitoring national programmes and projects and providing the relevance media platform for debate and consensus building,’ he said.

The awards ceremony, he said, should be seen as part of the overall efforts to promote high journalistic standards and as a barometer for measuring periodically, the performance of the Ghanaian media and journalist in particular.

Mr. Monney said the constitution of the Association stipulates that such awards were organised annually with the maiden award held in 1985.

He said the GJA saw the awards as encouraging public-private, corporateindividuals, governmental and non-governmental partnership in the development of the Ghanaian media.

The GJA President urged corporate institutions, individuals and organisations to support the ceremony saying as an association, they welcome efforts especially when it promotes a sense of shared responsibility and the idea that ‘we all hold a stake in the development of the media’.

The Chairperson of last year’s Awards Committee, Mrs Charity Binkah said the awards ceremony was one of the recognise events not only in Ghana but worldwide and urged journalists to be particular when they are submitting their entries. By Francis Asamoah Tuffour & Sandra Aklikpe-Ose

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