GJA to celebrate 2015 World Press Freedom Day

The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), will lead the Ghanaian media to celebrate World Press Freedom Day, which falls on May 3, with three major events.

They are two public lectures, a symposium and a flag-raising ceremony.

In a statement signed by the President of GJA, Mr. Affail Monney, the association said, as part of the GJA’s efforts at encouraging the use of the media to promote freedom, peace, democracy, national unity and cohesion, it will use the celebration to focus on the need for both traditional and social media to help instil in the Ghanaian body polity, the spirit of defence of the truth, dialogue, tolerance, civility, gender equality, mutual respect and understanding.  

It said the celebration which is being sponsored by the United Nations Education Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), Accra Brewery Limited and Voltic Ghana Limited will start with a public lecture at its headquarters, the Ghana International Press Centre (GiPC), on Thursday, April 30, 2015, at 3 p.m.

The lecture will be delivered by Professor Audrey Gadzekpo of the Women’s Manifesto Coalition.  She is also Director of the School of Communication Studies, University of Ghana, Legon.

Her topic is the global theme for the celebration which is: “Towards Better Reporting, Gender Equality, & Media Safety in the Digital Age”.

The statement noted that 2015 also marked the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action which concerns gender equality in society and the media.

The Association, it said, in its perception of gender, had always believed that women were co-equals of men and had been dependable partners.

“They have made positive and significant difference in all fields of endeavour, including the media industry, when they have been given the chance.”

“The GJA on this auspicious occasion wishes to congratulate Ghanaian women journalists and other media personnel, both past and present, who have helped to bring about positive developments in the Ghanaian media.”

“The Association wishes to recognise in particular, Mrs. Gifty Affenyi-Dadzie, Mrs. Frances Ademola, Ms. Ajoa Yeboah-Afari, Ms. Harriet Techie-Menson Ms. Lucy Brown, Ms. Afia Konadu, to mention, but a few,” it said.

There will be a second public lecture on Monday, May 4, 2015, at the GIPC at 3 p.m. It will be delivered by the Convener of the Coalition on the Right to Information, Professor Kwame Karikari of the School of Communication Studies, University of Ghana, Legon. His topic is “Delay of the Right to Information Law:  Undermining the People’s Right to Know and Devaluing Press Freedom”.

The climax of the celebration will be the traditional symposium and flag-raising at the GiPC, on Tuesday, May 5, 2015, at 10 a.m. There will be free health screening for interested media personnel, who arrive early to attend this event.

World Press Freedom Day; the day proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in 1993, is the anniversary of the Declaration of Windhoek which acknowledges that media pluralism and press freedom are essential to development.

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