Help fast track re-enactment of GNA’s Act- New Board urged

Mr Albert Kofi Owusu, the General Manager of the Ghana News Agency (GNA), has called on the newly constituted board of the Agency to fast track the re-enactment of GNA’s Act.

He said the re-enactment would reposition the Agency as a viable media organisation with a more business focus to generate significant revenue for its operations and the State.

The General Manager made the call at the inauguration of an eight-member governing board of the Agency in Accra, on Wednesday.

The Board, chaired by Mr Ransford Tetteh, a former Editor of the Daily Graphic, has Mr Peter Claver Nibepwo Sangber-Dery, Mrs Ivy Hoetu, Mr Daniel Addai and Dr N. A. Ibrahim Larteyas members.

The rest are: Dr Charles Kwening, Ms Juliet Amoah and Mr  Owusu, the General Manager.

The General Manager said the Agency had initiated plans for the launch of a business and economic news reporting project to give a sharp focus to sectors of the economy, towards projecting Ghana as the most attractive investment destination on the continent.

He said it had also rolled out digital operations on a pilot basis to take advantage of the digital revolution to expand news services covering a host of users.

The General Manager said in spite of funding challenges, the Agency was pleased with the output and responses from subscribers and quoted Mr Robert Mac Millan, a former General Manager of Reuters News Agency, as saying: “The work of a news agency is never spectacular. The details of our operations are for the most part little known to the general public. Nevertheless, we have a vital part to play in the functioning of an informed democracy. A national news agency, independent and strong outside politics, free from influence from any group or faction, is an essential element in the modern democratic society.”

Mr Owusu said the Agency was also developing scheme of service with the assistance from the Public Services Commission to align the human resource needs with the operations of the Agency and the corresponding remuneration, saying a major concern of the Agency was poor remuneration of its staff.

“This is critical as management seeks to invest more in the training of staff to take on bigger projects.Staff retention will be key to the achievement of the Agency’s goals. We hope that the new board will assist management to engage stakeholders for a review of our employees’ salaries,” he emphasised.

Mr Yaw Boadu-Ayeboafo, Chairman of the National Media Commission, said the NMC remained committed to protecting State-owned media organisations from undue political influence.

He urged collaboration between management and the new board towards the achievement of organisational goals.

He said, “We need to work collectively because it is from our collective efforts that we will be able to make gains,” and cautioned the staff against disharmony.

While advising the Agency to improve on its marketing strategy, the NMC Chairman urged it to uphold its integrity to continue to enjoy the trust of the people.

Mr George Sarpong, Executive Secretary, NMC, commended GNA for successes chalked despite the numerous operational challenges over the years and urged members of the new board to build on the work of the outgone board.

Mr Tetteh said the board would work towards ensuring that the Agency retained its internally generated funds to enhance its operations.

He assured of the board’s readiness to continue with projects the outgone board initiated with some innovations towards sustaining the Agency’s position as the reference point for media excellence.

– GNA

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