The National Media Commission (NMC) has called for intensive media coverage for the activities of the Electoral Commission(EC) and the issues involved in the electoral process, ahead of the 2016 general elections.
According to the Commission, it was about time the media, especially, the radio stations, which were more accessible to the electorates, gave prominence to educating the people on the electoral process as the country geared towards the December 7 polls.
The Executive Secretary of the Commission, George Sarpong, in a presentation on “Monitoring Report by the NMC on Media Coverage of Radio Stations programmes in Kumasi revealed that, the media had been giving much attention to political party activities as against that of the EC and its activities.
“During our monitoring process, the Commission came to the realisation that, all the radio stations monitored, concentrated more on political party activities, and paying little attention to education of the electorates on the activities of the EC,” he underlined.
He, therefore, urged every radio station to channel a lot of airtime to the coverage of programmes of the EC.
According to Mr. Sarpong, lately, there appeared to be dissonance between matters of public interest and what the media prefer to talk about, which was not in line with the standard of media professionalism.
Similarly, he lamented how there was no parity in media coverage in view of issues regarding gender in the country.
“There is a huge gender disparity in media coverage and issues that promote women and children, and it is very disheartening, issues on females should be promoted”, he noted.
The NMC’s Media Coverage Monitoring Report revealed that, one out of 10 radio stations gave little attention to issues concerning women which to the Commission “is very shameful”.
The Media Coverage Monitoring exercise was sponsored by the European Union (EU) and conducted from January to July 2016.
According to the Chairman of the NMC, Kwasi Gyan Apenteng, it was to assess the performance of the media.
He explained also that the exercise was for the Commission and all stakeholders to understand the media trends and identify which aspects of media reportage the industry was lacking so as to create a room for improvement.
From Kingsley E. Hope and Faustina Kwabea Osei, Kumasi